Salvation Army uses #TheDress in campaign against violence


Not every time something goes viral on the web will your company be able to piggyback on it for tons of free PR. But sometimes you can and the Salvation Army is reaping the benefits of the black-and-blue dress vs. the white-and gold dress phenomenon as part of its campaign against domestic abuse.

In a couple of days, this 150-year-old organization turned the world-wide conversation about individuals’ perception of the color of a dress into society’s perception of domestic violence. Why are some us, even whole societies, unwilling to see and act to end violence against women?

“Why is it so hard to see black and blue? One in 6 women are victims of abuse,” is included on the photograph below of a women dressed in a white and gold dress and covered in black and blue bruises.

The Salvation Army posted an image of a woman in a white and gold dress with black and blue bruises and turned the conversation about dress color to one about domestic abuse in a matter of days.
The Salvation Army posted an image of a woman in a white and gold dress with black and blue bruises.

The image above appeared Thursday, posted by the Salvation Army’s South Africa branch, directing people to call a domestic abuse hotline in Cape Town. The one below was posted Friday.

This image of a different woman applying “white and gold” make-up on her face was posted Thursday with the question: Why is it so hard to see black&blue?
This image is of a different woman applying “white and gold” make-up  was posted Thursday with the question: Why is it so hard to see black&blue?

The Salvation Army is a worldwide Christian denominational church and charitable organization with more than 1.5 million members. It definitely is not a small business. Neither are Dominoes Pizza, which took to Twitter to  capitalize on NBC’s live broadcasts of “The Sound of Music” and “Peter Pan” or Oreo cookies that used  the 2013 Super Bowl blackout to bring attention to their brand by Tweeting “You can still dunk in the dark.”

But that also doesn’t mean your business shouldn’t be on the lookout for trending web topics and use them to bring attention to your business. Just make sure what you post is not tacky or tasteless. That will do more harm than good.

To see the Salvation Army’s tweets about The Blue Dress, click here. 

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