NEW YORK — Peppercomm has launched a new test designed to help brands identify and mitigate the risk of “purpose-washing,” and the backlash that comes with it. The StandSmart Purpose Stress Test includes an end-to-end assessment of a company’s stated purpose, and factors that could undermine its credibility. Employment and business practices, brand voice, governance and public affairs are among the areas evaluated. The offering includes working with a brand’s leaders to rectify areas of a company’s operation that are not in line with its purpose. Jackie Kolek (pictured), Peppercomm senior partner and New York general manager, said the offering was created in response to an increasing number of companies addressing societal issues in marketing campaigns — leading to an uptick in accusations of them being disingenuous.

NEW YORK — MWWPR has partnered with American University’s School of Communications to launch a program that enables agency clients to connect with young consumers that make up Generation Z. The program, called MWWPR Z-Suite, includes the agency providing up to 10 students monthly creative briefs, who will, in turn, submit proposals for strategically addressing the client need. Participants receive feedback, counseling and mentoring from MWWPR staff. They also receive a $300/monthly stipend.

NEW YORK — Porter Novelli/Cone has released its 2019 Gen Z Purpose Study, which looked at Gen Z’s stands on issues, propensity for activism and what role they see companies playing in advancing their agenda. The finds:

  • 90% of Gen Z are tired of how negative and divided our country has become.

  • 86% say events like the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting have made them care more about issues affecting them.

  • 90% believe companies must act to help social and environmental issues.

  • The percentage of Gen Z'ers who saw gun control and LGBTQ+ rights as priority issues for companies to engage around both grew roughly 15% from 2017 (from 69% to 80% for gun control and 65% to 74% for LGBTQ+ rights).

  • 80% feel they can have an impact on issues by using social media.