Unilever: ‘UK still top for marketing brainpower’

Unilever’s global communications planning director Geoff Seeley says the UK is still leading the way in “communications thinking”, as the company posted an increase in sales for the third quarter.

/c/r/a/CornettoUnilever.jpg

Speaking at MediaPro 2011 yesterday (2 November), Seeley said the UK homes the world’s marketing thought leaders, although developing markets are doing “a great job” of executing campaigns, specifically in new media such as mobile and digital.

“We have invested heavily at the centre [in the UK] to transform the way we are undertaking marketing in developing markets. We have a strong CMO in Keith Weed and a mandate from the CEO to [concentrate on growing the brand in emerging economies],” he added.

Unilever CEO Paul Polman forecasts that 80 to 90% of Unilever’s future business will come from developing markets.

Third quarter results announced today (3 November) reported that a 13.1% rise in sales in developing markets such as India and Brazil offset slower growth from developed markets.

Seeley said yesterday that Unilever has produced “pockets of fantastic work” in developing markets, particularly in China where the company recently produced a branded TV programme for its anti-dandruff shampoo brand Clear. Unilever claims the programme and corresponding marketing activity reached one third of the Chinese population and achieved media value of 7.4 times the marketing spend.

Seeley added: “[The UK] still has the [marketing] brainpower and is leading the way we think about communications.”

Unilever reported a 7.8% increase in sales for the third quarter, which it said was driven by increased prices and growth from emerging markets.

The Flora and Dove maker raised prices by 5.8% in the three months to 30 September.

A 2.9% drop in Western European sales were offset by a 2.4% increase in prices. The UK, the company adds, saw “good growth and share gains”.

Rival Procter & Gamble reported a 4% increase in organic sales last week.

Latest from Marketing Week

PLEASE SIGN IN OR REGISTER. IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

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

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

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 will be your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

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

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

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