Lockdown boost to TV ad exposure measured in ASA analysis
Increased television viewing, fuelled by reduced opportunities for people to leave their homes during the early stages of the Covid-19 outbreak, saw unprecedented changes in exposure to TV ads, according to a new analysis from the Advertising Standards Authority.
It found that during the first seven weeks of the UK’s lockdown, exposure to TV ads rose by 15.6%, as television viewing levels increased by more than a fifth. The increase equates to an average of 340 additional impacts per person, per week.
There was a reduction in exposure to ads for sectors which were adversely affected by the pandemic. Ads for cinemas, bars and restaurants, and travel brands were seen far less than before the outbreak. Exposure to ads for cinemas, for example, fell from 5.9 ads per adult to 1.5.
But in contrast there was increased exposure to government and social campaigns, from 8.5 ads to 25.2 ads per adult, and 2.1 to 5.6 for children. Exposure to food-related brand-building ads also increased exponentially, from 5.9 to 23.7 per adult.
Children aged 10-15 saw the highest increase in TV viewing levels during the crisis, with particular increases during the daytime and after 9pm. A comparison of weeks 1-11 of 2020 (prior to lockdown) and weeks 12-18 shows ad exposure among 10-15 year olds rose by 19.5%, almost double the increase among all individuals of 10.1%.
The ASA research was based on data from the Broadcasters Audience Research Board (BARB). It focuses on broadcast television and does not include subscription services.
Diversity in Advertising competition returns from TfL
Transport for London has launched this year’s Diversity in Advertising competition, in conjunction with City Hall and its advertising partners.
Brands are encouraged to submit innovative creative campaigns, with the winner set to receive advertising space across the TfL network up to the value of £500,000. This is the third year TfL has staged the contest.
This year the competition challenges brands to authentically portray people over the age of 55. In previous years advertisers have been encouraged to better represent women and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities in their work. Last year’s winner was hosiery brand Nubian Skin.
The UK’s ageing population means that 17.7% of people are aged over 65, yet this group features in just 6.17% of advertising, according to research from Lloyds Bank
“We are responsible for the one of the most valuable advertising estates in one of the most diverse cities in the world. This is why it is vital that we play our part in making sure campaigns are truly reflective of London’s diversity,” says TfL director of customer revenue, Chris Macleod.
“We are excited to be running this competition again, which will hopefully both challenge brands to think how they can better represent older people in their advertising and help them better realise the unique possibilities that our estate can offer in terms of reaching a diverse, attentive audience.”
Buy, print, drop message from Royal Mail
Royal Mail has launched an integrated campaign to drive awareness of its Click & Drop online postage service, which is designed to make the sending of parcels easier at a time when consumers and small businesses are completing more transactions online.
The ‘Postage that fits around you’ campaign was developed with creative agency MBA and Arena Media, and is aimed at consumers, marketplace sellers and SMEs. The ads emphasise the practical benefits of the service, which include being able to pay online, print labels anywhere and drop parcels at 14,000 locations.
The umbrella message of ‘Buy, Print, Drop’ will be conveyed by radio and national press slots, supported by digital displays, podcasts and social media.
“We have worked hard to respond to consumer and SME demand when it comes to parcel delivery, and this has become even more significant given that so many of us are spending more time at home now,” says Royal Mail marketing and digital director Natalie Thomas.
“We’re delighted to be launching this campaign and we hope it will encourage many more consumers and SMES to take advantage of this fast, easy-to-use service.”
Tim Hortons banks on drive-through appeal for UK expansion
Canadian coffee shop brand Tim Hortons plans to expand in the UK, despite a recent collapse in sales due to Covid-19.
Tim Hortons is owned by Restaurant Brands International, which uses a franchise model. The brand has 23 branches in the UK, where it first opened in 2017. It now plans outlets in every major town and city, and hopes to capitalise on the increased popularity of drive-through dining, the BBC reports. The first new branch is scheduled to open in Milton Keynes.
Globally, Tim Hortons has a total of 4,900 branches, 937 of them outside Canada. It has a target to run 40,000 branches. Despite admitting that the chain cannot predict exactly when “the dust will settle” from the pandemic, chief executive Jose Cil is confident Tim Hortons is “well positioned to capitalise on opportunities for growth as we emerge from the crisis.”
Dune London launches charity range to support YoungMinds
Footwear and accessories brand Dune London is supporting charity partner YoungMinds this weekend, to recognise World Mental Health Day on 10 October.
A range of charitable accessories will be available in Dune London stores and online. Unisex items include a reusable canvas tote bag and a choice of face masks, from which 100% of profits will be donated to YoungMinds.
Actor Gillian Anderson is taking an ambassador role for Dune London in support of the charity.
YoungMinds is a charity committed to improving the wellbeing and mental health of children and young adults in the UK. During the Covid-19 pandemic it has seen rising cases of loneliness, anxiety and depression.
Thursday, 8 October
HSBC UK celebrates ‘The New Different’
HSBC UK has again enlisted the help of comedian and television presenter Richard Ayoade as the face of its latest campaign, ‘The New Different’.
The 30-second ad aims to prompt a conversation about what long-term, positive change can look like, and encourages audiences to stop waiting for normal to return and instead use this opportunity to build a better world.
The spot, created by Wunderman Thompson UK, is supported by a national outdoor and print campaign.
“As a bank, our purpose has been to help people navigate the winds of change for more than 155 years,” says HSBC UK’s head of brand marketing Sarah Mayall.
“Now more than ever, we want to demonstrate to the people, businesses and communities of the UK that we are here to support them. This new campaign is our way of saying ‘We’re ready when you are, to take on this change and build the new different together.’”
HSBC UK has also extended its support of British Cycling for 12 months through the re-scheduled Olympics and Paralympics, and has raised more than £2.4m for charities supporting those impacted by the pandemic. It has also further developed its partnerships with Shelter and Children in Need.
Westfield launches a podcast to inspire students
The retail group Westfield has launched ‘How I Got Here’, a podcast series sharing the stories of retail entrepreneurs to inspire students and their future careers.
Each of the eight podcast episodes, presented by BBC 1xtra’s Reece Parkinson, is in conversation with a different business founder about their career journeys, how they got to where they have and useful business advice. The episodes highlight the different types of jobs and roles across a range of sectors from food and fitness to music and the arts.
The launch coincides with Westfield’s annual Student Event Week, running until 9 October, which gives young people exclusive discounts and offers at both Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City.
Student Lounges have opened at both London venues, with attendees receiving a goody bag with exclusive offers from Footasylum, MAC, All Saints, Tommy Hilfiger and more.
“As we can’t host our full-scale Student Event in person this year we wanted to reach our younger visitors in a new way,” says Westfield Stratford City general manager Alyson Hodkinson.
“The How I Got Here podcast is a great way to share the stories of the entrepreneurs and retailers from our centres with students. We still have some fantastic exclusive offers at the Student Lounges to give a great experience, bringing those new to London into our centres safely.”
UK retail footfall growth goes into reverse
Footfall in UK retail dropped by 28.2% in the five weeks between 30 August and 3 October 2020, according to data from retail intelligence suppliers Springboard.
Year-on-year footfall declined by 34.6% in high streets, 31.5% in shopping centres and 10.8% in retail parks. Footfall continued to strengthen in September, although the improvement slowed, dropping by 28.2%, compared with 30.8% in August.
Footfall shifted downward from 25% in the first week of the month to 28.7% by the third week as the school term started, and by the last week footfall declined by 31.4%, when greater restrictions on movement were introduced.
The greatest impact of the introduction of the compulsory 10pm closure was felt by high streets, which has the majority of hospitality outlets, with footfall moving from -34.3% to -39.4% in the second half of the month.
Retail parks have consistently outperformed high streets and shopping centres, and in September footfall during day time trading hours in retail parks was just 7.3% lower than in 2019.
DMA publishes dyslexia employer guide
The Data and Marketing Association (DMA) has produced a guide to help raise awareness during Dyslexia Awareness Week 2020.
DMA Talent: Dyslexia Employer Guide has been produced to assist the creative, data, and marketing industries, much of the content is pertinent for organisations and sectors across the UK.
Using expert insights from neurodiversity consultants and feedback from dyslexic professionals, the guide will help employers to understand dyslexia and what they can do to make their workplace more inclusive.
It provides comprehensive guidance and recommendations on reasonable adjustments that employers can make to recruitment processes, the workplace environment, support networks, and most importantly, how to treat employees as individuals.
It is estimated that one in 10 people have dyslexia, but symptoms will likely range significantly between each person.
“Although awareness has increased in recent years, dyslexia remains misunderstood and businesses must do more to become inclusive workplaces,” says DMA Talent general manager Kate Burnett, a co-author of the guide. “Our new employer guide addresses this by helping employers to understand what they can do to support a diverse workforce.
“Our Dyslexia Employer Guide is the latest instalment in our neurodiversity guidance series, offering organisations free advice on how to create a positive, supportive, and flexible workplace culture that permeates all levels of the business.”
Media Smart teaches young audience about online advertising
UK advertising’s non-profit education programme Media Smart has launched a resource aiming to help young people better understand online advertising.
Produced in collaboration with the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA), the education pack explains interest-based advertising, why it exists and how young people can best manage it.
‘How to manage your online advert experience’ features a three-minute animated film and various classroom resources. It also introduces an ‘AdChoices Icon’, with users able to click on the logo to learn more.
“We are really excited about the launch of this new film-based resource educating young people on how to manage the adverts they see online,” says Media Smart director Rachel Barber-Mack.
“The animation is a fun and innovative way to teach, I’ve learnt an awful lot about the subject myself in creating these materials and would urge everyone to watch the film regardless of what age they are.”
Wednesday, 7 October
Virgin chief brand officer Lisa Thomas steps down
Chief brand officer Lisa Thomas is leaving the Virgin Group amid a wider leadership restructure that will mean her role is not replaced once she departs at the end of the month.
Instead, Virgin will bring its Virgin Red rewards programme closer to the masterbrand by appointing Virgin Red CEO Andrew Swaffield as chief commercial officer in addition to his current role, Adweek reports. In September, the company rebranded Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Club air miles to Virgin Points, a rewards currency that works across all Virgin companies.
Holly Branson, the daughter of Virgin founder Richard Branson, is being appointed chief purpose and vision officer, in addition to her current role as chair of Virgin Group’s non-profit foundation Virgin Unite. The restructure also sees chief communications officer Nick Fox leave the company after 13 years.
Virgin Group CEO Josh Bayliss credited Thomas for her work in building the “Virgin brand into a force for good”, and highlighted her contribution not only to brand strategy, but across various gender diversity initiatives.
Thomas joined the Virgin Group in 2016 after 20 years as founder, CEO and chairman of creative comms agency Lida. Prior to that she was group CEO of M&C Saatchi London.
“On a personal note, I am very sad to say goodbye,” said Thomas. “I have loved my time at Virgin, but I am very excited about what the future might hold. I’m looking forward to a bit of time off and then moving onto my next challenge.”
Tesco sales up 6.6% as 1.1 million customers now ‘more loyal’ than pre-Covid
Tesco group sales rose by 6.6% year on year to £26.7bn in the half year to 29 August, as the supermarket sought to increase customer loyalty amid the Covid-19 crisis.
The UK and Ireland contributed the majority of sales, up 8.6% to £24.3bn, while revenue rose by 0.7% to £28.7bn. The supermarket recorded a pre-tax profit of £551m, up 28.7%.
Adapting to what it described as “major shifts in customer buying habits”, Tesco saw UK food sales rise by 9.2%, although sales fell for both clothing (down 17.2%) and general merchandise (down 0.3%). Online delivery capacity more than doubled during the period to reach 1.5 million slots a week.
The supermarket now claims that 90% of shoppers rate store safety highly and more than 1.1 million customers are “more loyal to Tesco” than pre-pandemic. Citing the ‘Brand of the Year’ recognition at the Marketing Week Masters Awards last month, Tesco said that its brand net promoter score (NPS) is up two points.
After launching the ‘Aldi Price Match’ programme in March, the retailer has since extended this pricing to more than 500 lines, enabling Tesco to “switch gains from Aldi for the first time in a decade”. The supermarket also noted how it has rewarded Clubcard customers with exclusive deals through the extension of Clubcard Prices to around 2,000 products.
CEO Ken Murphy, who only took up his role six days ago, described the first half of 2020 as having tested the business “in ways we had never imagined” and credited Tesco employees for rising to the challenge.
“We are absolutely committed to continuing to invest in value for customers and safety for all in these uncertain times,” he added. “Tesco is a great business with many strategic advantages. I’m excited by the range of opportunities we have to use those advantages to create further value for our customers and, in doing so, create value for all of our other stakeholders.”
Ikea to open record 50 stores worldwide
Ikea is to open a record 50 new stores worldwide after experiencing “tremendous interest” in its products since the onset of the pandemic.
The Swedish furniture giant and its franchisees will open 30 new stores in the next 12 months alone, including the completion of the new Ikea site in London’s Hammersmith scheduled to open in the spring. The roll out of new stores will add to Ikea’s 445 current locations worldwide.
The business has benefitted from a post-lockdown push from consumers towards improving their homes and while sales did dip 4% to €39.6bn (£36bn) in the year to August, these results are better than expected during the early days of the crisis.
“We were expecting a gradual ramp-up in our business [when our stores began to reopen around the world], but we like many others were absolutely wrong,” says Jesper Brodin, boss of Ingka Group, a franchise company that operates the majority of Ikea stores.
He told the Today programme that, from day one of reopening, Ikea has experienced “tremendous interest” from shoppers coming back to its stores.
US tech firms told they hold ‘too much power’
Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple have been told they hold “too much power” and face breaking up, according to a new report backed by US Democratic lawmakers.
Democrats working on the 16-month congressional investigation said the power of these firms “must be reined in”, although Republicans involved in the probe did not agree with the recommendations.
The report alleges that the US tech giants charge high fees, forcing smaller customers into unfavourable contracts and engage in “killer acquisitions” to take ownership of the market.
“To put it simply, companies that once were scrappy, underdog startups that challenged the status quo have become the kinds of monopolies we last saw in the era of oil barons and railroad tycoons,” the report stated.
Recommendations to come out of the investigation include the stronger enforcement of existing competition law in the US, alongside limitations to prevent companies operating in areas where they are the dominant provider of infrastructure, such as a company like Amazon which acts as both a marketplace and a seller of products.
In a statement, Amazon argued that the fact third parties are able to sell alongside a retailer is the “very competition” that most benefits consumers and has made the marketplace model so successful.
ASA cracks down on weight loss brands
The Advertising Standards Authority has clamped down on three separate brands promoting weight loss solutions via social media during lockdown.
The ASA upheld a complaint against Skinny Revolution for promoting products “guaranteed” to help the user lose a stone in two to four weeks, as well as for posting a ‘before’ image of a slim Barbie doll and an ‘after’ image of an overweight Barbie doll, alongside the caption “Me in Quarantine”.
The regulator ruled that Skinny Revolution broke the code by making claims people could lose a precise amount of weight within a stated period, told the brand not promote prescription-only medicines to the general public and to ensure its ads do not “irresponsibly exploit people’s insecurities around body image”.
Fellow weight loss brand Skinny Clinic was reprimanded for a series of social media ads, including one featuring glamour model Jema Gilsenan claiming she would come out of lockdown “half the size” thanks to the brand’s Skinny Pen appetite suppressant.
The ASA told Skinny Clinic not to make claims that people could lose a precise amount of weight within a stated period and to ensure that its ads do not “irresponsibly imply” its products could be used by people who were not overweight, or suggest uses outside the product characteristics for a licenced medicine.
Lastly, the regulator upheld a complaint against weight loss company Skinny Jab for a number of social posts, including an Instagram story showing Towie star Gemma Collins discussing how she was working on her “summer body whilst in isolation” with the help of Skinny Jab. The company’s website also promoted “average weight loss is 12-20lbs within the first four-week course”.
Both Skinny Jab and Collins were warned that their posts must be “obviously identifiable as marketing communications” by adding #ad and the brand was told not to imply its products can be used by people who are “not overweight”, or make claims about the precise amount of weight that can be lost within a stated period.
Tuesday, 6 October
Coca-Cola axes Zico as part of brand cull
Coca-Cola is axing its Zico coconut water brand and looking at getting rid of some of its less popular versions of Coke and Diet Coke as part of plans to cut the number of products it offers amid the coronavirus pandemic.
A spokeswoman for the company told the Wall Street Journal the decision comes as Coca-Cola is “hyper focused on delivering on our consumers’ wants and needs”. To do that, it is focusing on those brands that can achieve a large scale, she added.
Other products under review include Diet Coke Feisty Cherry, Coke Life and regional US brands such as Northern Neck Ginger Ale and Delaware Punch. It has already closed its Odwalla juice and smoothie business.
Coca-Cola currently has more than 500 brands but is aiming to cut that number by more than half as part of a wider restructuring that includes a new marketing strategy and redundancies.
Marketers’ slow increase to planned ad spend hints at recovery
Marketers at some of the biggest global companies are beginning to increase their ad spend, although not to pre-pandemic levels.
A survey by the World Federation of Advertisers finds that 54% are no longer deferring campaigns. However, spend remains lower than originally planned for the first three quarters of this year, with only online display (up 6%) and online video (9%) experiencing higher levels of investment.
Marketers responding to the survey said they were shifting spend to digital, including a greater focus on ecommerce, virtual activations and events, and channel-agnostic video planning. The ‘traditional’ channels are experiencing a pick-up in spend but TV is still down 25% for the first nine months of the year compared to planned spend, while outdoor is down 39% and point-of-sale 20%. Worst hit was events and experiential, down 60%, and radio at 35%, both of which are facing mounting declines.
WFA CEO Stephan Loerke says: “We are starting to see some green shoots of recovery with more than half our members no longer holding their campaigns back as a result of the pandemic. There is still a lot of uncertainty though and it’s unlikely we’ll be moving to ‘business as usual’ anytime soon. We are also seeing an acceleration of the shift to digital channels but it remains to be seen if this will be permanent.”
PureGym apologies over ‘unacceptable’ Facebook post about slavery
PureGym has apologised after one of its gyms in Luton and Dunstable posted an “unacceptable” update on Facebook about slavery.
The post, about a workout designed to celebrate Black History Month, said “slavery was hard and so is this”. Entitled ’12 Years of Slave’ after the film of a similar name, the workout included 12 different moves such as push ups and box jumps.
The Facebook update was widely criticised on social media, with many call it “insensitive” and “offensive”. Each PureGym location runs its own social media account, with the company saying it did not “approve or endorse” the post and was removed as soon as it was brought to its attention.
PureGym adds: “Each of our 271 gyms has its own social media channels, which are run locally. We take this matter extremely seriously and are urgently investigating how and why this post was made.”
ITV launches week-long campaign for World Mental Health Day
ITV is moving its ‘Britain Get Talking’ marketing campaign into fundraising with a week of activity leading up to World Mental Health Day.
The broadcaster says anxiety and depression have soared during the pandemic, with calls to mental health helplines increasing and the calls lasting longer. With that in mind, ITV’s campaign will pledge to ‘Help our Helplines’ with the ring of an unanswered call interrupting programming during popular shows on ITV.
ITV is also focusing its content on mental health, with Good Morning Britain revealing the results of a poll exploring how the nation is coping since lockdown, Lorraine featuring an interview with Dr Alex George who lost his younger brother to suicide and This Morning speaking to CALM CEO Simon Gunnings about the next iteration of Project 84, which shines a light on male suicide.
The aim is to get people thinking about the impact calls to mental health helplines can have, and get them to donate so no call is left unanswered.
ITV CEO Carolyn McCall says: “ITV is very proud of Britain Get Talking, our campaign to encourage us all to look after our mental health. In this national emergency, when the nation is under such pressure, talking and connecting with others is vital. Sadly not everyone has someone to talk to or somewhere to turn for help. Our mental health helplines have never been more important, so we’re raising money to help make sure no call goes unanswered.”
Retail footfall hit by 10pm curfew
UK retail footfall fell by 3.5% last week compared with the week before as the 10pm curfew and wet weather impacted people going out, according to data from Springboard.
Footfall was down 7.1% on high streets, while shopping centre footfall was flat and retail parks up slightly by 0.8%. All of the decline was in the second part of the week as the weather worsened, while the decline between 7pm and 7am was worse than that between 7am and 7pm.
Footfall remains 31.4% lower than last year overall, with the high street faring worst with a 39.4% decline. Footfall in shopping centres is down 33.7% year on year and in retail parks is down 11.8%.
Springboard insights director Diane Wehrle says: “For the second consecutive week, and only the third week since the beginning of May, footfall across retail destinations declined last week from the week before.
“The 10pm curfew is clearly having an impact; while shopping centres and retail parks with only minimal evening economy activity are holding their own, high streets – where the majority of evening economy activity occurs – are feeling the effect. Inevitably the gap in activity from last year widened further, particularly in high streets, where footfall is now more than a third lower than it was in 2019.”
Elsewhere in the economy, UK car registrations fell 4.4% year on year – the worst decline in 20 years in what is usually the industry’s second most important month. There were just 328,041 new registrations in September, according to the the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Nevertheless, business activity slowed less than thought in September despite fresh lockdown restrictions and the end of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme. IHS Markit and CIPS’ purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the services sector dropped to 56.1 in September from 58.8 in August, but this was more than the expected value of 55.1%.
The composite PMI, which includes manufacturing, came in at 56.5, again lower than August but better than expected. Anything above 50 indicates a growth in activity.
Monday, 5 October
McDonald’s and Unilever join call for tougher deforestation rules
A number of the UK’s biggest food brands are calling on the government to toughen rules on deforestation.
Ministers are planning a new law forbidding big firms from using produce from illegally deforested land. But the companies say the law should apply to all deforestation, whether it is legal or illegal.
The 21 signatories, which include McDonald’s, Unilever, Tesco, Lidl, Nando’s and Nestle, say more needs to be done because of the effect on the climate whether trees are felled legally or not.
The companies have written a letter to the government on the closing day of its consultation on forest protection.
It says: “Restricting action to illegal deforestation would not achieve halting the loss of natural ecosystems, especially when governments have discretion to decide what is legal.”
Currently, the government’s plans refer only to major companies, but the signatories say this would allow medium-sized firms to continue importing large amounts of commodities from previously forested land. They are pressing for a level playing field so smaller operators don’t gain a competitive advantage.
UK director of campaign group Mighty Earth, Robin Willoughby, says: “The proposed legislation would continue to allow rampant deforestation in hotspots such as Indonesia and Brazil.”
Vice creates first global CMO role
Vice Media Group has hired Nadja Bellan-White to the newly created role of global CMO. She has previously worked at Ogilvy and has more than two decades of experience working with brands including American Express and Coca-Cola.
Bellan-White will lead Vice’s brand storytelling efforts globally, starting at the end of October, and will report to CEO Nancy Dubuc. With Bellan-White’s appointment, current Vice Media CMO Guy Slattery is leaving the company after nearly five years.
Dubuc says: “Quite simply, it doesn’t get better than Nadja. Her work in transforming some of the biggest brands on the planet is industry-defining and her ability to find ways to uniquely connect content, audience and commerce globally in the marketplace is unparalleled.”
As the youth media company’s first CMO, Bellan-White will helm the company’s marketing, brand and communications teams internationally across its businesses. These include Vice News, Vice.com, Vice Studios production unit, the Vice TV cable channel, in-house ad agency Virtue and women-focused brand Refinery29.
Black Pound Day campaign aims to boost black-owned businesses
Black Pound Day Day is launching a campaign to highlight black businesses.
The People Behind the Label, which was created pro bono by a collection of agencies, aims to raise visibility of the blackpoundday.uk directory where people can discover black businesses to shop and to also amplify the black-owned businesses featured in the campaign. The campaign will feature five businesses: Afro Pop Socks, 222 Vegan Cuisine, Kay Davis Art , Vitae London and Afrocenchix.
Black Pound Day, which takes place on the first Saturday of the month, encourages consumers to switch their usual shopping destinations to local and online black-owned businesses. It was established as a solution-based approach to support the growth of the UK black economy and came as a response to the systematic racism that creates inequality for the black community in the UK.
The campaign aims to encourage people of all backgrounds to promote and support black-owned businesses and spread knowledge on how this can help the growth of the British economy.
Founder of Black Pound Day, DJ Swiss, says: “The Black Pound Day team were delighted to be in partnership with Ogilvy Roots. They are a group of dedicated individuals, who were tone conscious and attentive to what we needed. Combining our creative and strategic ideas allowed us to accomplish a campaign we were happy with.”
The campaign will run online throughout Black History Month. Supporters that buy from black-owned businesses can upload their receipt directly to the Black Pound Day website so the organisation can calculate a monthly total. In August, the Black Pound Day initiative raised £24,031 for black-owned businesses.
Cineworld to close all UK and US venues putting thousands of jobs at risk
Cineworld is to temporarily close its UK sites over the coming weeks as it is hit by ongoing restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The company has written to prime minister Boris Johnson and culture secretary Oliver Dowden to say the industry is now “unviable”.
It says it has been hit by delays in the release of big-budget films, putting 5,500 jobs at risk The premiere of the James Bond film No Time To Die has been postponed twice and is now due for release in April 2021.
Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger says: “This is not a decision we made lightly, and we did everything in our power to support safe and sustainable reopenings in all of our markets – including meeting, and often exceeding, local health and safety guidelines in our theatres and working constructively with regulators and industry bodies to restore public confidence in our industry.
“We are especially grateful for and proud of the hard work our employees put in to adapt our theatres to the new protocols and cannot underscore enough how difficult this decision was. Cineworld will continue to monitor the situation closely and will communicate any future plans to resume operations in these markets at the appropriate time, when key markets have more concrete guidance on their reopening status and, in turn, studios are able to bring their pipeline of major releases back to the big screen.”
The chain is hoping that cinemas will be able to reopen next year, with staff being asked to accept redundancy in the hope of rejoining the company when theatres open again.
Samsung launches new brand platform
Samsung is launching a creative platform that aims to flip camera storytelling on its head.
‘Inspired by a True Photo’, created by Mother London, champions real-life consumer photos to celebrate the myriad of ways in which a real-life moment, captured in a single photo, can inspire diverse cultural art forms.
Samsung’s Electronics UK & Ireland marketing director, Sharon Hegarty, says: “This new platform is a completely original way to talk about smartphone photography and will open us up to a totally new audience. Camera technology has evolved rapidly over the past few years, but the way people use those photos has evolved even faster, morphing into its own form of instant communication.”
The first piece of content is based on a real-life photo of a sack of onions taken on a Samsung smartphone that is then taken on a creative journey. It is being launched in tandem with the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE
Hegarty adds: “Everyone can claim to have a great camera in their pocket but it’s not just about the megapixels or the perfect framing; we believe it’s what you do with the photo that counts. We want this new concept to focus in on the people behind the camera, because at Samsung, we believe they are the next big upgrade.”
Samsung is encouraging its customers to upload their real-life photos by using #withGalaxy, for the chance to have their image chosen, and the subject of their photograph influencing unusual creations in arts and culture.