Keep the brand builders out of the ballot box

Any attempt to remedy a lack of interest in voting by increasing the involvement of marketers would, I fear, make matters worse (MW last week).

Widespread disengagement from the electoral process is largely a result of the increasing use of marketing techniques by political parties. By adopting the slick methods of the advertising world, politicians have inadvertently turned themselves into the same depersonalised products that those techniques were initially designed to sell.

By adopting the behaviour of brands, politicians and their parties have forced themselves into a straitjacket of homogeneity, over-simplification and safety. When people wonder where the passion has gone in modern politics, or ask why people cannot tell it straight any more, what they are effectively saying is that our politicians are more worried about style than substance.

It is all very well having a recognisable logo, image and message, but the price of image is detail: we get a polished product, but we also get vacuity.

Marketers in politics are a fact of life, and in some senses a welcome one: it would be futile and wrong to complain about that. But the answer to apathy is fewer marketing techniques, not more.

Richard Mollet

Associate director

Fleishman Hillard Public Affairs

London WC2E

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here