Head & Shoulders seizes awkward moment between Trump and Macron

The company’s social media team responded to commentary and jokes after the president brushed what he called dandruff off the French president’s suit. Was it worth the effort?

It’s not every day a dandruff shampoo makes headlines.

Head & Shoulders jumped at the chance to promote its products after an interaction between President Donald Trump and France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, went viral.

The exchange was part of a state visit and dinner that Trump hosted for Macron, who today is addressing members of Congress.

The Washington Post reported:

Standing in the Oval Office on Tuesday, and with the cameras rolling, President Trump announced to the world that the president of France, Emmanuel Macron, has a flaky scalp.

“We do have a very special relationship,” Trump said, with the French president at his side. “In fact, I’ll get that little piece of dandruff off. You have a little piece.”

Trump brushed a finger on Macron’s lapel. The Frenchman looked puzzled, then mustered a laugh. A moment later, Macron looked down and brushed off his jacket.

The Hill reported:

Macron went on to tell reporters that the gesture from Trump “wasn’t innocent,” but declined to criticize Trump further.

“One must show that you won’t make small concessions, even symbolic ones, but also not over-publicize things, either,” he told Le Journal du Dimanche in May.

Trump’s interactions with diplomatic leaders have made headlines before. The Guardian even outlined the types of handshakes and gestures Trump has made, including the exchange with Macron, in an article titled, “The art of the feel: Why Trump is the master of the awkward greeting.”

Social media users took to Twitter to ridicule the interaction, with some saying the move played out like a Head & Shoulders commercial. Proctor & Gamble, the dandruff shampoo’s parent company, didn’t miss the chance to seize the marketing opportunity.

Head & Shoulders’ social media team tweeted the following video, which depicts a box full of its shampoo and conditioner addressed to the French Embassy:

Though social media users’ responses to the snarky marketing stunt are mixed, the tweet has earned Head & Shoulders online engagement—along with additional news headlines and social media mentions.

What do you think of the move?

(Image via)

Topics: PR


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