Honors Theses

Date of Award

Spring 5-9-2020

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Integrated Marketing Communication

First Advisor

Christina Sparks

Second Advisor

Robin Street

Third Advisor

Robert Magee

Relational Format



The purpose of this thesis is to determine how consumers, specifically in the millennial generation, perceive brand activism. Additionally, the study will give recommendations to marketing and public relations professionals creating activist-minded marketing campaigns. As brand activism can be incredibly divisive and controversial, this research is essential in order to understand how best to resonate with, instead of alienate, millennial consumers. The aim of the thesis is to answer the following research questions: (1) How do millennial consumers perceive brands that engage in brand activism and (2) How can marketing and public relations professionals ensure brand activism resonates with millennial consumers?

To answer the research questions, the thesis will begin by offering a definition of the terms “brand” and “brand activism,” as well as additional relevant terms based upon the analysis of existing definitions. To answer the first research question, an analysis of secondary research on the topic will be completed and the results of a survey administered by the researcher to millennials regarding their feelings on brand activism will be presented. Lastly, two sections of the thesis will be dedicated to answering the final question: case studies and interviews with business professionals. The insight gathered while conducting this research will allow the researcher to develop recommendations for business professionals creating activist-minded campaigns for corporate brands.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



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