packaged goods

Brawny Celebrates 'Amer-I-CAN' Spirit

No holiday represents American strength and spirit like Independence Day, and considering those are the attributes Georgia-Pacific’s Brawny paper towel brand is trying to convey, it makes sense the company is using the holiday to send out a special message. 

The brand has launched a series of videos, featuring three people who have overcome obstacles to achieve great things. The campaign celebrates the “I-Can” spirit (that’s also reflected in the last four letters of “American.”) 

“With everything we do, we try to inspire consumers to face life’s challenges with strength and resilience,” Joel Potts, senior associate brand manager for Brawny, tells Marketing Daily. “We want people to find the inspiration to overcome whatever obstacles they might face.”

The videos, featuring Sallie Mae Teacher of the Year Brad Cohen (who also has Tourette’s Syndrome); Destyni Tyree, a once-homeless teen who managed to graduate high school at 16 with a 4.0 grade-point average; and entrepreneur Jason Saltzman, who failed at 20 different startups before finding success with shared office-space company Alley, are featured on a website,

The company is also running an anthem video on digital channels that reinforces the mantra “It’s not American’t, it’s American.” The video features an oversized representation of the Brawny Man character doing all-American things (standing next to the Statue of Liberty, helping build a house, attending a little league game), while a voiceover explains how being an American is “about more than just the country you live in. It’s a value system, a belief that if we get knocked down, we get back up.”

The campaign is an extension of Brawny’s “Stay Giant” campaign, which highlights Americans who have triumphed over adversity, Potts says.

In addition to the videos, which will run throughout July, Georgia-Pacific has partnered with One World Observatory atop One World Trade Center in New York to offer a select number of complementary admissions to the attraction on July 4.  

“[One World] is a great place to activate because it’s a great representation of the resilience and strength within our country,” Potts says. 

The brand is also encouraging consumers to share their own stories (via short stories, images or videos) through the microsite, and is offering consumers who leave their e-mail a chance to win a trip for to Washington, D.C.

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