Marketing Matters Mar/Apr 2017 ISSUE 55. Thank you for your continued support, you can find more articles on

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Marketing Matters is a free eZine, published every two months, which we think you will find a useful and informative resource.

Google's stupidity in accepting extremist content on YouTube and placing ads alongside it has resulted in more than 250 concerned advertisers withdrawing their support, including Audi, the BBC, BT, Coca-Cola, the Co-op, Dominos, HSBC, Lloyds, Marks and Spencer, McDonalds, Mercedes Benz, L'Oreal, O2, RBS and Waitrose.

A commission of £6.15 for every 1,000 views is paid by Google from the advertising revenue to the suppliers of the content. This means that the firms advertising have been unintentionally funding neo-Nazi organisations and terrorist groups. According to marketing experts these groups have made £250,000 from Google's advertisers.

The Solicitor General has warned that Google could face prosecution under the Terrorism Act.

Mark Brittin, Google's impressive European boss told delegates at a recent advertising conference that the money his employer makes from the arrangement with dangerous extremists is "pennies, not pounds" so that's all right then.


Press revelations of low ethical standards at Capita, the outsourcing firm the BBC pay to collect TV licenses have resulted in damage to the image of the BBC an undermining of public confidence and calls for the outdated fee to be abolished.

It is not known whether the BBC were aware that TV Licensing inspectors employed by Capita targeted elderly and vulnerable people to hit targets and earn substantial commissions. Director General Lord Hall was quick to distance his employer from Capita's grubby ethos when the revelations that the BBC's choice of outsourcing firm had hounded an ex-RAF officer with dementia and a young woman in a refuge.

Capita chief executive, Andy Parker will be leaving his employer this summer but denies that his moving on from his £2.7 million a year job is connected to the scandal.


It is said that those working on the editorial, as opposed to the advertising side of newspapers and magazines should not have any financial links with those they write about, and that this is to ensure editorial integrity.

On this basis the appointment of George Osborne as editor of London's Evening Standard newspaper comes across as a ludicrous folly, given the former chancellor's considerable income from speaking engagements with banks, income he has received because of his grooming of himself as the banker's friend. Osborne sacked the head of the Financial Services Authority Martin Wheatley, reviled by the banks but admired by the public for his welcome and over-due tough stance, and Osborne has watered down a tough new legal responsibility regime that frightened senior bankers as well as altering the annual bank levy to make it more palatable for his good friends.

As a free-sheet the Evening Standard is financially dependent on keeping advertisers happy. To critics of his choice of editor its owner, Evgeny Leberdev, has advised "Wait and see his paper before judging". So we will have to wait until Osborne steps into the job in May to see if his contribution will be to make it banker-friendly with positive banker PR, and drag in some much-needed advertising from his paymasters.

And, if so, whether it will then be worth reading...


BT have been ordered to cut at least £5 a month off the £18.99 a month it charges customers who only buy a land line from them.

The cut, ordered by telephone watchdog Ofcom, will affect more than 2 million BT customers, who will see their bills drop by at least £60 a year. Ofcom say that many of these are elderly or vulnerable people who have remained loyal to BT for decades.

BT's mobile phone company, EE, have also been censured by Ofcom and fined £2.7 million for charging customers £1.20 a minute for calls that should have cost 19 pence. In 2015 EE were fined £1 million for the way it mishandled complaints.

BT are also facing an accounting scandal in its Italian arm, which it says will cost it £530 million, and calls for its internet arm Openreach to be split away from the main business. The company was recently given the Money Mail Wooden Spoon award after being voted the company with the worst customer service by 27% of voting readers.


One positive aspect of travel in the 70's was return flights to the USA for less than £100, courtesy of the pioneering Sir Freddie Laker, who took on BA and won, for a while.

Now, nearly 50 years on, Ryanair and BA owners IAG have both announced budget flights across the pond. Ryanair are teaming up with Norwegian to offer return flights from Edinburgh to Stewart International (60 miles from New York) for around £140 and IAG will have flights from Barcelona to Los Angeles and San Francisco for around £170 return, flying on its new airline, Level.

The price war has been triggered by the drop in demand for trips to the USA, which has become a lot more expensive with the current low value of the pound against the dollar.


Those who don't have the time, or the inclination, to check their receipts in supermarkets are not always getting the attractive offers shown on the shelves. This is because the offers have expired and staff haven't removed the promotional graphics, so shoppers who put things on promotion into their trolley are being charged the full price.

A recent survey by trading standards in 50 Tesco stores over a three month period showed that 33 were regularly misleading customers in this way, with some products being charged at 80% more than the promotional price. In one Tesco Express in Birmingham an out of date offer was still on the shelf one month after staff had been advised.

Best advice? Make a note of promotional items you are buying in all supermarkets and challenge the price at the till if wrong, as they are legally bound to sell at the promoted price.


Asda have withdrawn a range of Slimzone diet meals they promoted as being suitable for one of Slimming World's diet plans, after the weight loss organisation accused Asda of using their name to sell the products, which were 50 pence cheaper than Slimming World's own products, sold in Iceland. Slimming World are seeking a legal injunction against Asda to stop the supermarket using its name.

Meanwhile Slimming World have also been in conflict with G. White and Co, makers of Porky Light sausages which Slimming World originally endorsed as only containing 2.5 grammes of fat and 78 calories per sausage. Then the diet club claimed that the Porky Lights were much higher in fat, and calories than they had thought, following tests that G. Whites said were carried out by a competitor. Tests by the independent United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) have shown that the Porky Lights have indeed 2.5 grammes of fat and 78 calories per sausage.

According to a sausage taste test carried out by the Daily Mail on ten diet bangers the Porky Lights vied only with Waitrose Reduced Fat Extra Lean Gourmet Sausages ( 6.65 grammes of fat, 116 calories) for a 5/5 score.


The Advertising Standards Authority (AS) have banned an ad by Jaguar cars that promoted a vehicle's hands-free mobile technology with the promise that its user could "stay in touch on the move" and "use the phone via the car".

The AS ruled that the ad, placed in the Guardian newspaper was irresponsible as it was likely to encourage unsafe driving practices.



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For the suppliers this will be a low-cost proposition of a total £85 for up to 100 words of text published in six issues over twelve months, which can include details of the venue/product, the discount offered and contact details. Suppliers that are also charities can have this flagged up and can book for £65. 



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The views of the editor are not necessarily those of the publishers.

Peter Cotterell
Tel: 01767 312986

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