The Marketing Week – 10/5/2013

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


BT Sport

BT Sport

The new broadcaster kicked off its marketing blitz against Sky earlier this week with the launch of the first advertising campaign to trumpet its sports channels. Ads have appeared in a select amount of out of home spots, carrying the strapline “Great sport happens here”.

The campaign features the likes of Manchester United striker Robin van Persie, PFA Player of the Year, Gareth Bale and Arsenal youngster Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain who also appear in the channels’ commercials.

BT hopes its “Willy Wonka”-esque marketing campaign will ultimately encourage people to swicth broadband provider to BT to take advantage of the free subscription offer. It claims the offer is the first time since the formation of the Premier League in 1991 that the games have been free to view.


The tobacco industry

The unveiling of proposed new laws for the next Parliament set out by the Queen at the state opening of Parliament was notable as much for what was omitted than what was included. Chief among the measures conspicuous by their absence was any plan to introduce plain packaging for cigarettes.

Although ministers were at pains to point out that plain pack plans have not been shelved forever, it is difficult to argue the development is anything but a victory for the tobacco lobby.

Chief among the big tobacco activists pleading the case for the industry, JTI UK, declared it a victory for “evidence based policy”. Cancer Research were less impressed.


The Co-operative Bank


The healthy brand ratings the Co-operative Bank enjoys could be at risk following suggestions its mounting debts mean it might have to accept state aid. Ratings agency Moody’s has downgraded the bank’s debt rating and suggested the Co-op might need “external support” from taxpayers after expressing doubts it can manage future losses.

The mutual wasted no time in mounting its defence, citing the “excellent levels of customer service and advocacy” it enjoys as proof it has a stable future.

It is true the Co-operative’s ethical and community focussed positioning has led to a lofty position in the affections of consumers, particularly since the 2008 financial crisis. It is also true stories of financial difficulties can hit perception hard.


Germany Rocks!

The German National Tourist Office has today (10 May) unveiled its Germany Rocks campaign in conjunction with airline Lufthansa and the Hamburg Tourist Board.

The campaign will target British audiences, encouraging them to visit the country’s various music festivals, including Wacken Open Air Festival, Reeperbahn Festival and Nature One, with spots appearing online, The Guardian and radio station Xfm.  

Emirates inks French Open deal

UAE-based airline Emirates has signed a five-year deal to become the official partner the French Open tennis tournament, adding to its sponsorship of the Italian and US Open. Tim Clark, president of Emirates, says: “Watched by millions around the globe this acclaimed clay court championship is the perfect platform with which to align our brand.”


Online paid-for content

YouTube this week confirmed long-standing rumours of it launching paid-for TV channels, with Sesame Street topping a list of brands to take a punt on monetising their previously free content via the Google-owned service. Subscription prices range from $0.99 to $2.99 per month with every channel launching with a free 14 day trial. With Apple and Spotify two of the few examples of making the paid-for content model work online, will the mostly ad-funded Google be able to join this list and inject a new and potentially lucrative channel into its revenue stream?


Thembela Mgudlwa in response to Mountain Dew dropping brand ambassador Lil Wayne for his “offensive” lyrics


“JR” on BT Sport’s “Willy Wonka”-like launch marketing campaign


Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey


Paul Fabretti, Telefonica Europe’s digital and social media lead



13 May The Emirates stadium hosts The Marketing Academy’s gala party for mentors, coaches, scholars, sponsors and partners.

14 May Channel 4 publishes its annual report, likely to trumpet the success of its Paralympics coverage and its lauded Public Enemy-soundtracked ad campaign.

16 May The IAB holds its annual Mobile Engage conference. Speakers include Marketing Week columnist and American Express international digital acquisition director Alex Tait; Facebook director of vertical business partnerships Christian Hernandez and comedian Marcus Brigstocke.



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