The Marketing Week

Welcome to The Marketing Week, your guide to the good, the bad and the ugly in the marketing industry over the last seven days.



In a week dominated by the terrible tragedy unfolding in the Philippines, the British Red Cross’ latest campaign took on a greater sense of poignancy. The charity is running an immersive theatre experience this month to mark its 150-year anniversary as it looks to recruit the next generation of volunteers. Visitors are treated to a series of scenes from the 1950s to the present day, with actors picked from refugee communities used to highlight the distress of people that have been displaced. The move aims to showcase a different side of the British Red Cross brand in the hope of attracting new volunteers and donors.  



New rules that make it easier for people to switch their bank account led to a rush of customers heading to Nationwide. It says it opened more than 214,000 new current accounts in its first-half, up 16 per cent year on year, with 54,000 of those switching their main accounts to the group.

Nationwide is crediting its marketing campaign with persuading unhappy current account customers to make the switch. The ‘you don’t need a bank’ ads tapped into distrust of traditional high street banks such as Natwest, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland following the financial crisis and LIBOR rate-rigging scandal. Profits are also up, more than doubling to £332m and its share of the current account market rose from 5.2 per cent to 6 per cent.


Starbucks must pay Kraft almost $3bn after terminating its deal with the US food producer.

Starbucks was hit with a $2.7bn (£1.7bn) fine for cutting short its grocery deal with Kraft Foods. The two firms had been in dispute since 2011, when the coffee company “prematurely terminated” its contract with Kraft to sell bags of Starbucks-branded coffee in stores. The fine shrinks Starbuck’s previously reported net profit of $1.7bn (£1.06bn) for the year to September to $8m. However, it also reduces its global tax bill from $832m to a credit of $239m.Starbucks has come under fire from politicians and the public for the amount of tax it pays in the UK. It maintains it has done nothing wrong but it has seen its brand reputation dented by the scrutiny.


ASOS eyes Eastern promise

ASOS truly became a global player this week with the launch of its Chinese ecommerce site adding to its already-existing seven portals taking in the UK, Europe, Russia and the USA. The site contains localised pricing and localised editorial.

Pandora pitches user data

US online radio company is pitching advertisers ad slots, with the added benefit of mining its user data to profile its listeners. The development has come about because of how its users access the service on mobile devices where the use of cookies, the primary method of online ad targeting on desktop, are largely redundant. 

ONE TO WATCH: Bluetooth’s return

Marketing Week covered how UK retailers were in exploratory talks to trial Apple’s iBeacon technology to improve in-store marketing, generate a ‘single customer view’ and ultimately combat ‘showrooming’. This technology works on the Bluetooth 4.0 technology and poses a potential threat to the (still nascent) NFC technology as a mobile marketing platform, given Apple’s refusal to support the latter.


@reiinamoto  – chief creative officer at AKQA offering sage advice
“Business ideas from the least expected players will disrupt your brand faster than advertising can save it”

@WeveUK – the mobile operator joint venture’s new data platform
”Today we stood up our strategic data platform where lots of magic is going to happen in the future. Like starting the ignition on a Ferrari.

@paulbmobile  – former Mobile Marketing Association CMO and now CEO of mCordis tweeting from the MMA EMEA Forum event
”Consumers don’t believe brands when everyone claims the same thing: trust is broken as consumers are lied to every day @adisave #MMAF2013”

@RealJaffaCakes – Jaffa Cake’s social media manager having a bit of Friday fun                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               ”.@CostaCoffee @mumoftwotiggers @tescomobile @YorkshireTea We’ve always wondered – does Antony Costa get a free latte whenever he visits you?”

  • 9 November – ITV will be revealing earnings from its third quarter as the broadcaster looks to reassure advertisers of its resilience amid the shift to online viewing.
  • 22 November – Pernod Ricard is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its Havana Club International joint-venture with the Cuba government.
  • 22 November – Microsoft launches the Xbox One with a marketing campaign backed by music stars such as Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.

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