CMA probes ‘unfair’ Apple app terms
Apple is being investigated by the competitions watchdog for imposing “unfair” and “anti-competitive” rules on app developers.
The Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA) says the probe was prompted after several developers reported Apple’s terms and conditions as being “unfair and could break competition law”.
Apps available on the App Store have to be approved by the smartphone manufacturing giant which requires compliance to Apple’s terms.
Developers say to offer in-app features, add-ons or upgrades requires Apple’s payment system, rather than an alternative and cheaper method. Apple charges a commission of 30% on the value of transactions.
The investigation will consider whether Apple has a “dominant position” in the distribution of apps on Apple devices in the UK.
CMA chief executive Andrea Coscelli says the case warrants close “scrutiny” as millions of people who use apps every day could be losing out, if Apple is setting unfair terms or restricting competition and choice.
“Our ongoing examination into digital markets has already uncovered some worrying trends. We know that businesses, as well as consumers, may suffer real harm if anti-competitive practices by big tech go unchecked,” says Coscelli.
The European Commission is also reportedly mounting its own charge against Apple for anti-competitive behaviour for the first time.
Budweiser pumps £117m into breweries as it eyes further growth
Budweiser is investing £117m at its breweries in Monmouthshire and Lancashire as it eyes further growth after reporting record sales last year.
The company says it is expanding capacity with the target to produce 3.6 million hectolitres of alcohol, which is 630 million litres. It reported a growth of 19.6% in Q3 last year and a rise of 23.4% in Q4.
Budweiser Brewing Group UK and Ireland president Paula Lindenberg says the company is focused on strong economic recovery and investing into new roles and technology will set it up for future growth.
“We know the beer industry is hugely valuable to the UK economy, and we believe our investments in our UK operations will be a catalyst for the recovery post-Covid,” says Lindenberg.
Budweiser will split the money between the two sites, with £72m being invested in its Welsh site in Magor to create 32 jobs, and £45m going to its Samlesbury brewery to open 23 jobs.
Deliveroo chooses London for IPO
Food delivery service Deliveroo names London for a future IPO listing, as it outlines plans to secure its place at the top of the food delivery market in the UK.
The company says 2020 was a year for growth in which it saw six months of profits at the operating level.
This year Deliveroo says it is “focused on ambitious plans” to accelerate growth. It will expand its Editions delivery-only kitchens; on demand grocery; Plus subscription service; expand its service to new locations; and offer its signature service which enables customers to order via restaurant websites.
New tools will be developed to support restaurants to provide riders with more work and extended choice for customers.
In a potential float, Deliveroo will adopt a time-limited dual-class share structure to provide founder and CEO Will Shu “stability” to take decisions for the company to continue with its long-term plans and create shareholder value.
The company was founded in 2013 by its first rider and chief executive Shu, who began operations in Chelsea, West London.
Deliveroo has created 46,700 jobs in the UK including 38,300 in the restaurant sector since its launch, according to research consultancy firm Capital Economics.
Chief executive Shu says: “Deliveroo was born in London. This is where I founded the company and delivered our first order. London is a great place to live, work, do business and eat. That’s why I’m so proud and excited about a potential listing here.”
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak adds: “The UK is one of the best places in the world to start, grow and list a business – and we’re determined to build on this reputation now we’ve left the EU. That’s why we are looking at reforms to encourage even more high growth, dynamic businesses to list in the UK.
M&S Bank shutters branches
M&S Bank will close 29 branches and associated current accounts this summer after online services “accelerated” during the pandemic.
The shift comes as customers adapted to online banking throughout last year, customers with affected accounts will be contacted immediately in the coming weeks for their options. M&S Bank says it will move to a solely online and telephony servicing. The number of jobs potentially to on the block was not detailed.
To accelerate its digital offering the bank will unveil a new credit card product for a more “integrated end-to-end shopping and payment experience”.
M&S Bank CEO Paul Spencer says the focus on its digital strategy is “regrettably” at the expense of the branches and accounts.
“We’re now firmly focused on supporting both our customers and colleagues through this change, and the delivery of our transformation plans, which will create new and rewarding payment solutions for M&S shoppers, both in-store and online.”
Jack Dorsey acquires majority stake in Jay Z’s Tidal
Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey has bought a “significant majority ownership stake” in Jay-Z’s music streaming service Tidal for $297m (£213m), through his mobile payments company Square.
Under the deal, existing shareholders, such as Daft Punk, Beyonce and Madonna, will remain stakeholders, and Tidal will operate independently of Square alongside the Seller and Cash App ecosystems.
Jay-Z will join Square’s board of directors after the deal closes, which is subject to regulatory approval.
The deal follows the hip-hop artist selling half of his Armand de Brignac champagne company which operates under the brand Ace of Spades, to luxury goods company LVMH.
“I said from the beginning that Tidal was about more than just streaming music, and six years later, it has remained a platform that supports artists at every point in their careers,” says Jay-Z.
“Artists deserve better tools to assist them in their creative journey. Jack and I have had many discussions about Tidal’s endless possibilities that have made me even more inspired about its future. This shared vision makes me even more excited to join the Square board. This partnership will be a game-changer for many.”
Dorsey adds in a tweet: “It comes down to a simple idea: finding new ways for artists to support their work. New ideas are found at intersections, and we believe there is a compelling one between music and the economy.”
UK scraps EU cap on Covid grants
The UK has scrapped a European Union cap on Covid-19 state aid for businesses, meaning claimants can now apply for triple the original amount.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy says large companies will be able to claim up to £10.9m, up from the capped figure of £3.45m.
The announcement follows retailers complaining of being frozen out of claiming grants during the UK’s third lockdown because the maximum amount had already been allocated.
The British Retail Consortium called for the cap to be removed last month, saying “bureaucratic restrictions” were stopping business receiving vital funds.
Industry group UK Hospitality CEO Kate Nicholls says the move is a “big step” to providing certainty for businesses but the government can “go further” to ensure businesses do not miss out on needed money.
Thursday, 4 March
Google will not replace third-party cookies for privacy-first web
Google will not be developing any technology to replace third-party cookies, which its Chrome browser will no longer support by 2022. The tech giant says it will move away from technologies that track users across the web to target advertising.
David Temkin, Google director of product management, ads, privacy and trust, says that such technology has led to an erosion of trust.
“Today, we’re making explicit that once third-party cookies are phased out, we will not build alternate identifiers to track individuals as they browse across the web, nor will we use them in our products,” he adds.
Temkin says that other providers may offer products that provide a degree of identification, but Google will not. “We don’t believe these solutions will meet rising consumer expectations for privacy, nor will they stand up to rapidly evolving regulatory restrictions,” says Temkin.
According to Google, people should not have to accept being tracked in order to benefit from relevant advertising.
Temkin says aggregation, anonymisation, on-device processing and other developments should be able to replace the process of identifying individual people.
Amazon brings till-free shopping to the UK
Amazon has opened a checkout-free grocery store in London, allowing customers to walk out immediately after shopping with payment taken by a smartphone app. It is the brand’s first such store outside the US.
Called Amazon Fresh, the Ealing store sells own label items as well as branded goods. Amazon has existing ties with supermarkets Morrisons and Booths, which are also supplying some items.
The store seeks to offer a ‘frictionless’ shopping experience. Shoppers don’t need to scan items, but can simply place them in a bag.
“When you’re finished, you’re free to walk out,” says Amazon Fresh Stores director Matt Birch. He says that further London stores are planned.
The development could shake up the competitive convenience store market by making visits easier and faster.
Disney and Philips partner on healthcare experience programme for children
Health technology brand Royal Philips has partnered with The Walt Disney Company to test the effects of custom-made animation to help nervous patients.
The scheme will investigate how Philips Ambient Experience can use a series of animated stories, featuring familiar Disney characters, can improve patient experience during MRI scans. Content from Disney animators, for use with clinical guidance by Philips, has been created specifically to reduce the fear and anxiety children can experience during the scans. Characters include Yoda from Star Wars and Mickey Mouse.
“A visit to the hospital can be quite intimidating for people, and especially children, where a more patient-friendly, patient-centric environment could help improve the patient experience and help drive first-time-right imaging for improved outcomes,” says Kees Wesdorp, chief business leader of precision diagnosis at Philips.
“With this pilot study, we will investigate the impact of Philips Ambient Experience including Disney’s specially developed themes to empower children with a positive experience to help them throughout the medical procedure.”
Disney has a long history of work in children’s hospitals. In 2018 it committed $100m for hospitals around the world as part of its global social purpose programme.
Research reveals public trusts CEOs more than politicians
The Edelman Trust Barometer 2021 has found a dramatic drop in public trust in the government and media during the second half of last year, leaving business as the most trusted institution globally and in the UK.
Of the 33,000 respondents in 28 countries, 54% said they believe journalists are trying to deliberately mislead them, 56% that most news organisations have a political agenda and 69% that the media is “not doing well at being objective”.
When asked whether the onus is now on CEOs “to step in when the government does not fix societal problems”, 59% agreed that it was and 60% that CEOs should take the lead on change, rather than waiting for government to impose change on them. A total of 80% believe CEOs should speak out publicly over societal issues.
However, that apparent mandate for brands and businesses to dive in and fill a void left by government and media may not be quite so straightforward.
As journalist, broadcaster and chairman of forthcoming television channel GB News, Andrew Neil, pointed out during a panel discussion to mark the report’s publication, most CEOs might feel a bit uneasy stepping too far out of their comfort zones.
“Do not get carried away by the fact that business seems to be a bit more popular now than it was,” the former Sunday Times editor said. “The moment business starts to get involved in political and public issues is when it becomes unpopular.
“The moment a chief executive thinks they should be doing more than running their company is when they need to come in front of people like me, and by and large they hate doing that and they’re not very good at it either.”
Pinterest Premiere seeks to bring in advertisers with video
Pinterest is launching a new video ad system, Pinterest Premiere, that will capitalise on the growing use of video by ‘pinners,’ giving brands exclusive video placement on the home feed of specific demographics, interests or categories for designated time frames.
Pinterest users are currently viewing nearly 1bn videos per day on the platform. The Premiere service will launch tiered packages for advertisers in the UK, US, Germany, France and Canada. It was announced in the UK through an online event that featured guests including Emmy Award-winning actor and producer Dan Levy, WPP UK country manager Karen Blackett OBE and Trouva founder Alex Loizou.
The drive to increase its profile with brands comes amid reports Pinterest was the subject of a $51bn bid by Microsoft. The Financial Times reports that Pinterest wishes to retain its independence and has seen increased users since the Covid-19 lockdown. The platform attracts more than 450 million users every month.
Wednesday, 3 March
Disney targets 50% ad revenue from programmatic by 2024
Disney expects programmatic to make up to 50% of its total ad revenue by 2024, as it targets an 80% revenue increase in automated advertising this year.
The entertainment giant says it has added 1,000 new advertisers over the past year, prompted by brands shifting from long-term TV ad commitments to programmatic buying as the pandemic disrupted the broadcast of live events.
To drive this shift to programmatic, the company is rolling out the Disney Real-Time Ad Exchange (DRAX) to help advertisers view and buy streaming ads. According to Business Insider, Disney plans to sell linear TV ads via the ad exchange to enable brands to take advantage of viewership spikes.
The company is learning from tests within the Hulu service, which Disney acquired in 2019 and is part of the Disney+ platform. The self-service DRAX platform is being rolled out following tests with Hulu advertisers. Disney is also said to be adopting Hulu’s measurement tool that tracks what people do after seeing an ad and integrating Hulu’s first-party viewership data into its own first-party data marketplace.
Disney’s data platform now includes more than 1,000 audiences based on household characteristics, purchase intent and psychographics, which brands can then use to target ads.
“The makeup and mix of a Disney deal now looks very different,” says Disney executive vice-president of client and brand solutions, Lisa Valentino.
Yum! Brands acquires AI consumer insights business
Yum! Brands has acquired AI-powered insights business Kvantum as it looks to use consumer insights and data analytics to drive “marketing spend optimisation”.
The Pizza Hut parent company plans to integrate the algorithms and artificial intelligence models developed by the consumer insights and marketing performance analytics firm to help better understand consumer behaviour and make “informed” media choices.
Yum! Brands is also hoping to tap into Kvantum’s machine learning and econometric modelling capability to measure the impact of marketing in different locations across owned, paid and earned channels. The acquisition ladders up to the company’s overarching digital commerce strategy.
According to Yum! Brands chief digital and technology officer Clay Johnson, the business wants to use the acquisition of Kvantum to roll out a “disciplined marketing sciences programme at scale” and fast-track its data and analytics strategy.
“Technology strategies that elevate the customer and employee experience and lead to smart, data-driven marketing decisions are critical to keeping our brands R.E.D. (relevant, easy to access and distinctive) and delivering growth for our franchisees and shareholders,” adds CEO David Gibbs.
“We’re excited about the opportunity this acquisition presents and the potential to scale Kvantum’s proven technologies across our system to strengthen our data and advanced analytics capabilities and elevate our world-class marketing competencies globally.”
Yum! Brands plans to combine Kvantum’s artificial intelligence and machine learning approach with the work of anthropologists and sociologists at Collider Lab, a culture-based consumer insights and marketing consultancy the company acquired in 2015.
O2 campaign exposes the UK’s digital divide
O2 is rolling out a new campaign highlighting the extent of the UK’s digital divide, as seven million people – almost a tenth of the population – are still unable to access a web-connected device.
Launching today, the three-week ‘Community Calling’ digital campaign will span a series of online and social media takeovers of video-sharing platforms, news sites and dating apps, designed to highlight the impact tech poverty has on everything from home schooling and applying for jobs, to accessing essential support.
Taking a creative concept inspired by a computer error message, the campaign aims to promote O2’s ongoing partnership with charity Hubbub, through which the telecoms company aims to donate 10,000 unused smartphones to the most vulnerable, digitally disconnected people in the UK.
O2 is donating a web-connected handset and 12 months of free connectivity to all Community Calling beneficiaries, which will include unlimited minutes, unlimited texts and 6GB of data per month for a full year. Consumers are also being encouraged to donate their old smartphones online, which will be refurbished, have their data-wiped and sanitised, before being sent to their new home.
“At O2 we know how vital connectivity has been to millions of people this past year, whether that’s enabling them to work effectively from home, keeping in touch with loved ones or even just helping them to unwind with some online entertainment,” says O2 CMO, Nina Bibby.
“We have also seen the devastating impact digital exclusion can have on the most vulnerable people, from loneliness to lack of access to essential services and we’re determined to raise awareness of this with our new digital campaign.”
Ralph Lauren rolls out subscription service
Ralph Lauren is introducing a subscription rental service, a move the luxury fashion brand is pitching as a means of gaining a “deeper understanding of the consumer”.
The Lauren Look service allows customers to rent pieces from the Lauren Ralph Lauren range for a fee of $125 (£90) per month. Rolling out first in North America, the service enables members to curate a wardrobe of looks from the most recent Lauren Ralph Lauren collection and prioritise their favourite pieces. After wearing the garments, members can either exchange them for new pieces or purchase the clothes with member discounts.
Once the clothes have reached their rental cap they will be donated to Delivering Good, a not-for-profit organisation providing people impacted by poverty with new and nearly new clothing.
Describing itself as the first luxury brand to “pioneer a fully articulated rental model”, Ralph Lauren says the service offers consumers a new channel to experience and reflects how shoppers are evolving to the digital retail landscape.
“The Lauren Look allows us to explore an entirely new model tapping into the growing focus on the sharing economy and revolutionising how we look at fashion consumption,” says chief innovation and branding officer, David Lauren.
“Launching with Lauren, our most widely distributed and accessible brand, is a testament to the growth we see in this space and will help us further anticipate the evolving needs and makeup of our consumers’ future closet.”
UK spend on entertainment hits record high
The lockdown drove UK spending on films, music and gaming to reach a record high in 2020, eclipsing the wider leisure sector which shrunk by 29.1%.
Retail spending on entertainment increased by 18.3% to a record £9.26bn, a figure some £210m larger than expected and the fastest rate of growth ever recorded. While in-home leisure spending rose 2.3% last year to £77.7bn, expenditure on eating out, events and holidays fell by 38.6% to £154.1bn.
The entertainment sector’s success was driven in large part by streaming, with video emerging as the fastest growing digital sector in 2020. Powered by the growth of subscription services such as Netflix and Disney+, sales in this sector rose by 37.7% to £2.9bn.
Within entertainment, gaming represents the biggest single sub-sector, accounting for 48% of total sales. Sales of console games rose by 7.7% to £638.5m, driven by the launches of the Playstation 5 and Xbox Series. While sales of CDs and DVDs declined, LPs saw their 12th successive year of growth generate £110m in sales.
“The entertainment market was already growing without coronavirus, but with much of the leisure sector shuttered due to lockdown, music, video and games were in the right place at the right time,” says Entertainment Retailers Association CEO, Kim Bayley.
Tuesday, 2 March
Diageo launches menopause guidelines as part of inclusion commitment
Diageo has launched menopause awareness guidelines as part of its commitment to creating an inclusive and diverse workforce.
Through the introduction of its ‘Thriving Through Menopause’ guidelines, the global drinks giant hopes to improve understanding given more than 1 billion women will be experiencing the menopause by 2025, which is equivalent to 12% of the world’s population.
Diageo will be providing employees and line managers, who might be experiencing the menopause either directly or indirectly, with the resources they need understand how it might impact women in the workplace and how to offer support.
Women will be offered counselling and mindfulness sessions, as well as increased flexibility, with the option to change working patterns if necessary, and be given access to sick pay entitlements to deal with symptoms where appropriate.
Diageo’s global talent director, Louise Prashad, says: “We are committed to creating a fully inclusive and diverse workforce and as part of this to championing open and empowering conversations, particularly in subjects that can often be difficult or taboo.
“With today’s launch of Diageo’s menopause guidelines we are actively encouraging all of our employees to build their understanding of how the menopause impacts women in the workplace and in our personal lives, as well as providing strengthened support and flexibility during what many women can find a challenging time in their professional careers.”
UK shoppers spent an extra £15.2bn on groceries
Grocery sales increased by 15.1% over the past month, the fastest rate of growth since June 2020, as the latest lockdown limits spend at restaurants and pubs.
Online sales again performed well, according to the latest data from Kantar, accounting for 15.4% of grocery sales during the four weeks to 21 February, up from 8.7% last year and marking a new record share.
In means nearly a quarter of all households bought groceries online during the past month.
Ocado had a particularly good run, with its sales up 35.3% over the past 12 week period, nudging its share up 0.3 percentage points to 1.7%.
Since the pandemic began, UK shoppers have spent £15.2bn more on groceries, an average of £4,800 per household, which is an increase of £500 compared to the previous year. People have eaten 7 billion more meals at home since the pandemic began, and drank an additional 2 billion cups of tea.
Kantar’s head of retail and consumer insight, Fraser McKevitt, says: “It’s been an extraordinary 12 months for online and 3 million tonnes of food alone have been delivered to people’s homes over the past year.
“It’s a habit that seems to be sticking among British consumers and internet orders now make up an average of 65% of grocery spending each month for people who do shop online. Grocers should take note of the customer satisfaction gap between online and in store -people that buy on the internet are typically 7 percentage points happier with their shopping trip than shoppers at bricks and mortar stores.”
Zoom’s profits rocket 2,994%
Zoom’s sales increased 326% to $2.6bn in 2020 as people were forced to work from home, with profits rocketing from $21.7m in 2019 to $671.5m, an increase of 2,994%.
The video conferencing firm, which charges businesses for its software, while offering more limited use for free to the general public, says it has benefitted from “an unprecedented year”.
But Zoom boss Eric Yuan says the company’s work has “only just begun”.
“The future is here with the rise of remote and work from anywhere trends,” he adds. “We recognise this new reality and are helping to empower our own employees and those of our customers to work and thrive in a distributed manner.”
The firm expects sales to rise more than 40% this year to reach more than $3.77bn (£2.66bn).
Barnardo’s launches ad highlighting young people’s mental health crisis
Children’s charity Barnardo’s has launched a direct response TV ad to shine a spotlight on the mental health crisis facing children and young people.
The charity says one in three young people have experienced mental health and wellbeing issues recently, fuelled by the pandemic, with stress, worry and loneliness the main concerns.
The ‘How I Felt’ campaign by Good Agency shares the real story of a girl whose father died forcing her into care homes before she ended up sleeping rough. The ad highlights the girl’s feelings of being “ripped apart”, “unwanted” and “alone” and shows how the charity has helped her through her struggles to get her back on her feet.
The ad, the second launched as part of the ‘How I Felt’ campaign, is designed to drive acquisition of new donors to a regular giving programme.
Barnardo’s director of brand, marketing and fundraising calls the ad “heart-rending” but says this approach is needed to “help viewers understand how it feels to be a young person going through issues such as this and what Barnardo’s is doing to help”.
Cadbury launches campaign to mark return of Twirl Orange
Cadbury is adding Twirl Orange to its permanent chocolate bar line-up and marking the occasion with a campaign celebrating the ‘unlimited edition’.
The tongue-in-cheek campaign by VCCP pokes fun at the culture of exclusive, limited edition deals, telling consumers the Twirl Orange is back for good so is ‘available for an unlimited time only’ and ‘it’s now or whenever’.
The campaign also include a film highlighting local shopkeepers and their stores, which will be selling the bar, and is part of an integrated marketing campaign that includes out-of-home, digital, social, in-store, PR and media partnerships.
Twirl Orange was originally launched as a limited edition last year, with the presale of the 69p chocolate bar selling out in less than five minutes.
Radhika Pai, brand manager for Cadbury Twirl at Mondelez, says: “We wanted to celebrate the return of a fan favourite in a special and safe way as well as heroing the shopkeepers who helped make it a success.”
Monday, 1 March
£5bn scheme for Covid-hit high street
With the Budget taking place on Wednesday, the chancellor Rishi Sunak is overseeing a grant scheme worth £5bn to help English retailers as they look to reopen after lockdown.
Under the programme, companies will be able to claim up to £18,000 towards the costs of reopening their businesses.
Sunak told the BBC “it is the right thing to do now” and that the grants would provide the “support they need to get [businesses] through, get them back on their feet”.
Nearly 700,000 shops, restaurants, hotels, hair salons, gyms and other businesses will be eligible for the “restart grants”, which will be distributed by local authorities from next month.
The funding takes the total spent on direct grants to businesses during the pandemic to £25bn, the Treasury said.
However, British Retail Consortium CEO Helen Dickinson says the move will “only provide temporary relief”.
Television and video viewing boosted by lockdown
All forms of television viewing enjoyed growth last year, according to research from Thinkbox, the marketing body for commercial TV in the UK.
Broadcast television grew 5% year on year, the equivalent of an extra 10 minutes viewing per person per day. The average viewer watched 3 hours and 22 minutes of broadcast television a day.
Subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services like Netflix and Disney+ boasted 50% growth year on year, the equivalent of an extra 11 minutes viewing time per day per person, with the average viewer watching 35.5 minutes of SVOD content a day.
When expanded to include watching content on social media apps, the total video time grew to 40 minutes per person per day.
In its first year, TikTok accounted for 3.5% of all video time across the year, while YouTube increased its share from 12.5% in 2019 to 13% in 2020 and Facebook dipped from 1.2% to 0.9%.
YouTube enjoyed 5.6% of all video advertising, while TikTok took 1.4%. Broadcast television accounted for a whopping 91%.
The report suggests YouTube’s relatively low rating for ad-watching is partly due to so much of its advertising being skippable and an inconsistency across its service regarding where and how ads are shown.
TSB ups data-driven marketing to ‘better connect’ with customers
TSB is looking to “better connect” with consumers through a highly targeted campaign on Channel 4.
The British bank will be using 4Sales’ data matching product Brandm4tch to deliver its ‘Life Made More’ campaign on All 4 throughout March.
By overlaying TSB’s first-party data with Channel 4’s 24 million All 4 viewers, the brand will be able to refine audience targeting and determine the number of households who have been exposed to an ad that go on to purchase the product.
“At TSB we are continually striving to improve data-driven marketing and the broader customer experience,” says TSB Bank head of performance marketing Morgan Reavey.
“It’s about using the very best in digital and data to better connect with our customers and non-customers. This partnership demonstrates that commitment, by delivering the right proposition and the right service at the right time and we are excited to see the results.”
The deal between TSB, Channel 4 and and software platform InfoSum was brokered by the7stars.
British Red Cross campaign aims to tackle vaccine hesitancy
The British Red Cross is hoping to address Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy, in particular among black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) communities, with a 90-second slot backed up by out-of-home, digital and social.
‘Get your facts straight to keep your family safe’ is based on research by the charity that highlights the importance of family as a source of both information and misinformation.
According to the research, people from BAME communities are nearly twice as likely to get information about the vaccine from friends and family.
The advert is based on the voices of real people who have been helped through the vaccination process by British Red Cross volunteers. The charity has also produced three radio slots, again using material from real conversations, which will go live from 4 March.
“By listening directly to people from BAME backgrounds and commissioning insight into the issue, we believe that kind, informed family conversations are key to addressing vaccine hesitancy within different communities,” says British Red Cross trustee Lewis Iwu.
“We have put this insight into action through our outdoor advertising, radio adverts and media activity, to equip people with facts, so that they can have compassionate conversations about the vaccine.”
Biden steps in to dispute over Amazon unions
President Joe Biden has warned against intimidation of staff forming a union, stopping short of mentioning Amazon by name but talking of “workers in Alabama”, a clear reference to the tech brand, where employees in the southern state are voting on whether to unionise.
Amazon, the second-largest private employer in the US, has no unionised labour in the country, and workers at its Bessemer, Alabama fulfilment centre would be its first, potentially leading to other similar developments elsewhere within the company.
Reacting to reports of intimidation tactics used by Amazon to dissuade such a vote, Biden insisted “unions lift up workers, both union and non-union, but especially black and brown workers”.
“There should be no intimidation, no coercion, no threats, no anti-union propaganda. No supervisor should confront employees about their union preferences.”
The last attempt by Amazon staff in the US to unionise was in 2014.