One of the many changes that occurred after Travis Kalanicks removal from the CEO position was a full refitting of the executive board functions and personnel. Bozoma Saint John, one of the new and Ubers first chief brand officer, began her new campaign directing Uber into the hearts of American pop culture; Sports.
This new campaign titled "Rolling with Champions" is an NBA themed campaign, taking NBA pros such as Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball and training them to be Uber drivers.
After Uber went through a very hard time starting with sexual harassment allegations and two anti-Uber campaigns, the new Branding executive is going to have her hands full as she steers public opinion away from dislike to intense association with the brand. Her first targets are pop culture and sports.
When asked why she chose these two sectors, Bozoma replied that concentrating on a new image rather than trying to explain away the old image is not how you win hearts. It is important to concentrate on the new, to create a clear vision for people to associate their hopes and desire with. Remember the past is good for maintaining memories, but not for moving forward. You cannot create a desire out of explanations, but you can from introducing something new. Uber is not a name of a company; it is a verb, it is like saying "I am going to Uber over there, or Uber here."
Another reason we do not discuss controversies is the fact that they are personal issues, they are not corporate. The media likes to apply sexual harassment to Uber, but Uber is not a person, it is a company, it employs people and some of the people were bad and had been cut out. By stating that Uber is sexually harassing you are stating that every employee and anyone associated with Uber is sexually harassing, and that is incorrect. That is the nexus of racism and sexism, to associate one person's actions onto a group, and we are not a group, we are a company made up of individuals. The bad seeds have been removed, and now Uber is clean of their effect. So, we will not discuss their problems as if it were an Uber issue; we are dealing with sexual harassment and violence on a corporate level, by offering internal seminars and courses, creating policies and generating processes to deal with issues as and when they arise.
When asked about pop culture and Uber's story, Bozoma replied that pop culture association is adding another layer to Uber. Look at Campbell's soup before and after Andy Warhol. The same goes for Uber; we need to paint it a new picture, a new association. Create a new generation, an Uber generation where everyone is a part of the new corporate identity. This is not about one man or one board; it is about every employee, every driver, and every customer. It is about everyone associating with the new Uber brand and accepting it into their homes, their minds and their hearts.
Sports is another global and national pastime that is accepted by everyone. Each individual has a personal attraction to a specific sport. By starting with the major sports, and bringing Uber to the game. The stadiums are all single sites associated with sports, but sports are in the house and in the minds of everyone. We don't just want to be a sponsor; we want to bring sports into the car where passengers interact with our message on a daily basis.
Another facet of Uber is their natural resource, the driver. Uber has so many individuals driving for it, and each driver represents a whole world of ideas, a history ups, and downs. Each individual has his or her pains and stresses as well as happiness and elation. Each driver has a thousand stories to tell, multiply those stories by the number of drivers we have, and you are mind blown away.
Regarding music, Bozoma has been deep into the music world, and she is considering all the angles of how to introduce the right rhythm and beat into her branding sphere. Music is a great motivator and mover of emotions, music can move a million people to cry or to shout with joy, and with Uber cars being so prolific, as well as the internet, it is easy to find ways to disseminate music through the branding process. Add to this the places and the people Uber drives, and you have a natural machine, a complete logistical operation that can reach the public's hearts daily, a million times a day.