Brand of the Day: Whirlpool and Upworthy Tell Stories of the ‘Sandwich Generation’

Caretakers of both aging parents and young children

Headshot of Kristina Monllos

Whirlpool has been around since 1911, but that doesn't mean the appliance brand's view of today's family is stuck there.

In a new collaboration with viral content site Upworthy (with creative led by digital shop DigitasLBi), Whirlpool has launched a "Perceptions of Care" video series to showcase how three generations of a family often live under the same roof—with the middle one, caring for their parents and their children, known as the "sandwich generation."

Showing a variety of families makes a lot of sense for the brand, as it has been expanding globally and seeing solid growth. And while partnering with Upworthy might seem like an odd choice, given consumers' recent aversion to clickbait, when you consider the target demographic—your aunts, uncles and parents, who are likely to share the work on Facebook—it seems like a smart move. 

Social Media Profile (as of 11/12/14)

Facebook Likes: 229,476

Twitter Followers: 12,400

Instagram Followers: 779

"Perceptions of Care" is part of an ongoing "Every Day, Care" campaign, which the company is pushing in various social media platforms to connect with consumers and get their stories. 

Recent Advertising

Above is the anthem spot, released in early October, from the "Every Day, Care" campaign. The brand explains: "The small acts of care we provide our families every day may seem insignificant and often feel like a chore. But at their core, every act of care we give helps the people we love become people who love—and that helps make our world a better place. It’s time we acknowledge the value of caring for the ones we love."

Fast Facts

  • Whirlpool started as the Upton Machine Company in 1911. Lou Upton and his uncle Emory nabbed a capital investment from Lowell Bassford to create electric motor driven wringer washers. 
  • In 1916 the company began a long-time partnership with Sears Roebuck & Co. In fact, in 1921 Sears lent the company $87,500 to expand its plant but when World War II struck the U.S. economy tanked and left Upton unable to loan. Since the companies already had a relationship, Sears canceled the loan in exchange for company stock. 
  • As Sears' need for washers grows, this forces the Upton Machine Company to merge with the Nineteen Hundred Washer Company in 1929. 
  • In 1949, the Nineteen Hundred Corporation launches Whirlpool's first campaign. A year later, the Nineteen Hundred Corporation rebrands as Whirlpool.

@KristinaMonllos Kristina Monllos is a senior editor for Adweek.