Mastercard ad

Look at these coronavirus TV ads!

Take a look at this clever compilation of current American TV ads, with brands attempting to show solidarity in a COVID-19 environment. It vividly illustrates how they’re all pretty much the same - down to the exact phrases and even near identical music! I think most are well-intentioned and would be fine on their own. They're seeking to show empathy rather than deliver a hard sell. But, viewed alongside ...


Send-up of PM – with serious point

I’ve just seen this Twitter clip from Matt Lucas, sending up PM Boris Johnson’s last coronavirus directive to the British people. Lucas mimics Johnson well — and, in the space of 17 seconds, hits an important point square on the head. The PM’s first lockdown address, backed by the ‘Stay Home, Protect the NHS, Save lives’ slogan, deserves credit for being ...


COVID-19: time to change your tune

My last post looked at whether you should cut or continue your marketing because of the COVID-19 pandemic. I said some should cut back or stop, while it’s wise for most to press on or increase their marketing. But if you are continuing your marketing, one thing's certain: this can't mean carrying on exactly as before. These are extraordinary times. Everything is being seen through a coronavirus lens — and your focus and message need to ...


Time to axe your marketing?

When tough times hit, marketing is one of the first activities some companies cut. Is that wise? And is it the right thing to do now — to survive the turbulence of the coronavirus pandemic? Every company’s situation is different, but I think the answers are ...


Coronavirus crisis communications

Your coronavirus communications – 7 questions to ask yourself

British businesses are quickly waking up to the reality that the coronavirus is no longer just ‘something happening in China’ but about to become a UK crisis, too. Firms are scrambling to put operational measures in place but — judging from conversations I’ve had in recent days — some are struggling with the crisis communications aspects, while they realise it's vital to protect their reputations and maintain confidence during any disruption ...


Brewdog - offensive ad

Boldness of the UnderDog

I see Brewdog’s latest billboard ad — for its alcohol-free beer — has been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority for being offensive. It wasn’t helped by being outside a primary school. It reminds me of the Scottish brewer’s previous run-in with ...


Place marketing: how inspirational is your location brand?

I wrote a little while ago about how there’s been a recent resurgence in location marketing and why UK towns and cities are right to grasp the nettle. I said I’d come back to how relevant bodies can undertake smart marketing to boost their area's economic ...


Dead in 48 hours — how quickly a crisis can kill your business

We’ve just advised a company in a case that shows how fast you sometimes need to act to address a reputational crisis – and the devastation that can follow if you don’t. I won’t name the company so as not to pile on more misery, but this was a relatively new leisure firm running a UK-wide roadshow of family events. Problems arose when it had to cancel ...


Place branding: the time to start is now

It’s funny how certain fields of marketing demonstrate sudden surges in interest. One field showing this lately is place marketing. By this I mean the ...


Is B2B marketing all about millennials?

This was the topic I was talking to a journalist about this week. It’s the idea that shifts are under way in B2B marketing because ‘digital natives’ in their 20s and 30s are being promoted into purchase decision positions. Here’s what I think – and some interesting ...