At least one company isn’t going anywhere. The Superior Gold Group is a proud Fox News Channel advertiser – something it claims that it has nothing to do with politics. And it’s keeping its advertising on whether the host at the moment is Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity or Bill O’Reilly.
The company deals in precious metals and items based on them, such as the Gold Affiliate Program, Gold Backed IRAs, and the Accession Slate Program. It says that as Beck has come under attack, so have they, and their looking into the possibility of legal retaliation.
SGG says its products are what they are and do not have a political or ideological affiliation. They are equally interested in selling to conservatives, moderates and liberals and respect all of those viewpoints. That said, the company recognizes that the company’s core clientele happen to be fiscally conservative.
There is still no hint that Beck’s problems have spilled over to his Premiere radio program. At FNC, the last tally placed the advertiser Beckxodus at 57.
RBR/TVBR observation: SGG admits that although it is essentially apolitical, it does just happen to serve individuals who are concerned about safe investing, and who tend to be conservative. So advertising on Fox makes sense, and Beck is well within SGG’s range of tolerance.
The danger facing a free speaker like Beck is moving so far to one side of the spectrum that he is only palatable to that side.
Speaking in advertising terms, Jay Leno, not some free-speaking liberal, is the exact opposite of Beck. Leno is careful about what he says and generally keeps his remarks toward the middle of the road. If one of his zingers happens to splatter somebody on the left, you can be sure there’s another one in the pipeline that’s going to equally muss somebody up on the right.
Jay is able to carry on a polite conversation with John McCain without alienating the supporters of Barack Obama. That is not how supporters of Barack Obama feel about Beck’s comments.
An advertiser who sincerely does thrive on volume sales would love access to the 2M-3M viewers Beck might draw on a good evening. But not if it means shunning the tens of millions of Americans who voted for Obama.
The reality is that we Americans have had freedom of speech for a long time, we’re used to it, we’re proud of it, we treasure it, and we give our Talkers a very, very long leash when it comes to speaking their minds. Controversial remarks are made on all sides without advertisers being held accountable.
Boycotts are called by small fringe groups all the time, but rarely get any traction. That’s been the amazing thing about this one – it has legs.
Chances are Beck will tone it down a little – although so far he is not – or enough time will pass that people will just stop thinking about it and the advertisers will slip back into the mix. Or maybe not. This one has yet to play out to the end.