5 things you need to know this week

With Habitat back on television screens, the Lib Dem’s pledging a ban on junk food ads and evidence of rising marketing budgets, it was a busy week. Here is the biggest news in the marketing industry over the last seven days.

1. Age UK takes a stab at Facebook as it raises awareness of rising loneliness among OAPs

Age UK - No Friends - JWT

This week, Age UK launched a new outdoor advertising campaign, which used a stark juxtaposition to respond to the current Facebook ‘Friends’ poster campaign.

The adverts, designed by J. Walter Thompson, feature the words ‘No Friends’ over portraits of solitary elderly people as the charity aims to raise awareness of the one million older people in the UK it says go more than a month at a time without seeing or speaking to anyone.

Russell Ramsey, executive creative director at the campaign’s creator J. Walter Thompson London, said the creative campaign is a great way of reminding the public that not everyone lives in Facebook’s connected world.

2. Snapchat discontinues ‘Brand Stories’ as it looks to redevelop the ad platform

snapchat

Snapchat has discontinued its first ad service ‘Brand Stories’ for the time being, as it confirmed it was redeveloping the platform, which launched only six months ago.

Unilever and Lynx were some of the first UK brands to use the ad platform, which delivers opt-in ads to users as shareable photo ‘stories’. The ads would last for up to 24 hours and were accessible through a users’ friends list for multiple viewing.

However, speaking to Marketing Week, a Snapchat spokesperson confirmed the service is currently in re-development and the app in a state of “fine tuning” to ensure it delivers the best possible experience to its users.

3. Liberal Democrats’ manifesto features pledge to introduce pre-watershed ban on junk food ads

Nick Clegg

Nick Clegg’s party manifesto would have worried marketers most this week, with the Lib Dems revealing it will push to restrict pre-9pm advertising of unhealthy food and drink products.

Its party manifesto also featured a promise to clamp down on e-cigarette advertising and to further encourage the traffic light system on food packaging to make sugar and fat content more obvious to consumers.

The several advertising pledges could very well be impactful to marketers, with Britain’s current third biggest party (based on MP numbers) likely to have the chance to form another coalition government post-7 May.

4. Marketing budget spend picks up as optimism grows, according to latest Bellwether report

FEJEJ

Marketers can rejoice as marketing spend grew at an accelerated pace in the first quarter of 2015, according to the latest IPA Bellwether Report.

Marketing budgets grew by 11.8% in the first three months of 2015, up from 6.1% in the final quarter of 2014, the tenth successive quarter of growth.

The largest growth in the quarter was seen in Internet, particularly search and SEO. Internet spend was up by 8.4%, marking its 23rd successive quarter of growth.

“While many commentators await to see what form Britain’s post-election economic landscape takes, marketing executives seems to be shrugging off any uncertainty,” said Paul Smith, senior economist at Markit and author of the Bellwether Report.

5. ‘We want to be the comeback story of 2015′ says Habitat as it launches first ever TV campaign

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Struggling to exist four years ago, Habitat launched its first ever television campaign this week as it revealed to Marketing Week that it is on course to double its stores in the UK to 80 in 2015.

The homeware brand launched the first of two television adverts to reinforce its design credentials. The first features a couple passionately kissing, but a voyeuristic camera instead choosing to focus on their ‘Hendrick’s’ sofa to represent Habitat’ customers greater interest in design.

The playful ‘We all look but only some of us see’ campaign will be followed in September.

“We think there’s still a real affinity for our brand so it’s about making people realise we’re back and using this campaign to ensure we are the biggest comeback story of 2015,” said Habitat’s head of marketing Jocelyn Dowden.

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