As reported by AdAge today, even in the face of a social media campaign calling for a boycott, FedEx has not cut its ties with the NRA and will continue to provide discounts to NRA members through the NRA Business Alliance program. FedEx is not following the actions of several other companies who have announced since the tragic school shooting in Florida that they are no longer doing business with the NRA.
Calls for boycotts have appeared on both sides of this divisive issue: both gun control advocates and pro NRA supporters are putting pressure on businesses to take a stand. While some companies may be comfortable taking a position on gun control, others are surely not happy to find themselves in the middle of of this debate. While pollsters report that stricter gun laws are supported by more Americans than oppose them, the pro-gun lobby is sufficiently strong to undoubtedly give pause to those companies willing to cut their ties with the NRA.
With consumers increasingly using the power of the pocketbook (or, the power of social media) to express their political views, brands will have some tough decisions to make: try hard to stay out of the fray (if possible) or alienate at least some of their base. Makes decisions about whether to use a celebrity mention in a social media post without permission look easy!
The courier said it "has never set or changed rates for any of our millions of customers around the world in response to their politics, beliefs or positions on issues." The NRA is one of hundreds of organizations in its alliance programs, FedEx said Monday in its first public comment on the matter.