Marketing and consumer behavior experts Amna Kirmani and Henry C. (Hank) Boyd III at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School are available to expand on her comments, below, explaining what’s at stake for brands that speak out against the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol and continued threat of violence directed at the Biden inauguration.”

Kirmani  is editor of the Journal of Consumer Research and former Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Consumer Psychology. She studies how consumers interact with brands based on their corporate social responsibility actions.

Kirmani says:

“For some time now, consumers have been saying that they will buy more from brands that take an active stand for causes consumers care about. And that they will avoid brands (or actively boycott) brands that take a stand against relevant causes.

“This is showing up in the latest political crisis. Trump opponents want brands to take stands on the following issues: 1) condemning the Capitol insurrection; 2) calling to impeach Trump; 3) withdrawing money from the Trump brand.

“The companies that have already taken such actions are gaining reputation benefits from Trump opponents but risking backlash from Trump supporters. Companies have to assess their own morals as well as the risks involved given the views of their target markets.”

Boyd’s expertise covers marketing strategy, advertising, consumer behavior and political marketing. He has consulted for the NFL, as well as for the likes of ExxonMobil and Verizon and is licensed to practice law in Maryland and Wisconsin.