Advertising Association aims to put industry on front foot

The Advertising Association has set up a foundation to help argue the benefits and merits of advertising to the wider world as marketing comes under the threat of increased regulation and attack from lobbyists.

Tim Lefroy

The initiative, called Front Foot, has been launched after research found that only 15% of adults “generally trust advertising”.

It will start early next year and will aim to be “the single contemporary authoritative objective source for the values and pitfalls of advertising, commercial and social communications”.

Tim Lefroy, chief executive of the Advertisign Association (pictured) said that it would be funded by all parts of the industry “in rough proportion”, including clients, agencies and trade bodies.

He announced the initiative at the Media Guardian Changing Advertising Summit today (19 October) and said that it was very worrying that this lack of trust was occurring at a time of long-term structural change for the industry combined with the recession.

Lefroy said that if the current trend continues people “against” advertising will soon outnumber those who support it.

He added: “Advertising is a force for good in society provided it is done responsibly and the UK has the best independent, self-funded regulatory system in the world.”

Lefroy pointed out that there have been 125 new pieces of legislation controlling advertising and marketing freedoms in the last five years.

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