Retailers’ price cuts are hard to avoid

The pressure from supermarkets to cut prices throws into question the value consumers place in brands. Sainsbury’s Justin King played down his rivals’ price cutting tactics as a “skirmish” but our research found that 85 per cent of people now prioritise cost over ethics when they shop, and only 13 per cent buy products for their brand status. Bargains are becoming a driving force and brands and retailers alike have a bigger job to do to keep consumers close. 

Rupert Cook, director, g2 Field Marketing


Research isn’t guesswork

I’m always game to challenge a sacred cow but I’m not game to say that back-of-the-napkin counting is ‘research’. It’s observation and hypothesis generation. Market research companies that follow the codes of their industry organisations are careful to include the caveats of their research findings and how to better interpret the results as a consequence. When data is shared without the expertise and guidance of a skilled researcher, it’s simply a collection of interesting numbers. The moral of the story is first trust the person delivering the data, then trust the data.

Annie Pettit, chief research officer, Peanut Labs


Brewdog has some bottle

The “gigantic faceless brands” Brewdog mentions in its response to the Portman Group, may well have been treating beer drinkers like brain dead zombies, but Brewdog is not so different. I see the same message being delivered over and over again, each time presented with unimaginative and frankly immature delivery.

The need to grow and reinvent is the essence of all genuine creativity and runs deeper than the posturing use of a few swearwords and a secondhand 1970s marketing concept. I know Fraserburgh is pretty far north but can it really have taken this long for Punk to get there and still seem remotely relevant and edgy? In my opinion, Brewdog delivers little more than a variation of what it claims to be fighting against.

Brendan Vallar


Facebook’s mobile appeal

I can see the attraction of Facebook’s mobile ad network for marketers – its data pool for one, but marketers can already access consumers at so many touch points online.

Delivering a strong brand message on a mobile device is only possible through mobile rich media formats, so if the network focuses less on traditional banner formats and more on custom native advertising solutions – which means more engagement and interaction – then there’s no reason why it shouldn’t appeal to both app developers and marketers alike.

Paps Shaikh, European general manager, Say Media


Do our data duty

While it’s encouraging to hear that younger audiences are more relaxed about opting in to data sharing, brands mustn’t lose sight of the contrasting attitude among older people. Nick Banbury is right that brands “need to start thinking differently about customer data and realise that access to it is a privilege, not a right”. The data repository of any business contains a wealth of information about its customers and while this is useful to the brand, it is equally useful to unscrupulous third parties. Individual companies hold the key to their customer intelligence and it’s vital that it is not lost.

Ian Stockley, managing director, Indicia



Virgin Delta experiential pop up Canary Wharf

Virgin Atlantic and Delta launch first joint marketing push

Lara O'Reilly

Virgin Atlantic and Delta have launched their first joint marketing push since forming a partnership to market each other’s transatlantic flights, highlighting the brands’ focus on customer service as their point of differentiation from other “marriage of convenience” airline joint ventures.

Good energy cover

The power of disruption

Mindi Chahal

Small and shrewd emerging brands are taking on big names and shaking up markets that seemed set in stone. But can established companies use these newcomer tactics to their own advantage?