The Marketing Week

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


Carlsberg revamps Happy Hour for the social age

The Danish brewer has come up with a quirky way to let drinkers extend the “Happy Hour” period. Fans who upload pictures to Instagram with the name of the participating venue and the #HappyBeerTime hashtag are able to keep buying Carlsberg or Tuborg beer at half price. Carlsberg says the campaign alleviates the pressure to drink excessive amounts within a short period, although you do wonder what alcohol awareness charities might think – given it could be seen as motivation to drink more.


Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research Logo

Without having to lift a finger, Cancer Research UK has managed to raise £2m in just 48 hours. The increase in donations, particularly from mobile, followed the success of a viral campaign on Facebook that asked women to post a picture of themselves without wearing make-up with the hashtag #nomakeupselfie and donate money to the charity.

Cancer Research says the increased interest has led to a “huge spike” in the number of unique visitors to its site, smashing its daily record. It is now promoting the campaign itself through emails to supporters and on its social media channels as it looks to build on the interest.


UK brands


Bad news for UK-based brands after Forrester’s first Customer Experience report found that no brand offered “excellent” customer service to consumers. Amazon’s UK business scored best but even the ecommerce giant didn’t manage to satisfy the needs of increasingly demanding customers.

Forrester says UK brands are still in “repair” mode when it comes to customer experience, looking to fix broken experiences rather than provide consumers with something new and innovative. It will be interesting to see next year’s results and which brands, if any, have managed to crack the excellent threshold.


ING customers unready for advertising’s future

Dutch bank ING was left with egg on its face this week when it was forced to pull a trial that would have seen it allow brands to target its customers based on their payment history.

The bank stopped short of admitting it has scored a massive own goal with one of its executives reportedly claiming the move is a “logical step towards the future of targeted advertising” but it did concede it had “not been clear enough about the sensitive topic of customer data”.

GAP eyes consistent positioning


Gap hired Wieden + Kennedy as its global advertising agency earlier this week as it looks to develop a more consistent positioning around the world. The retailer reportedly spent around $58m (£35.7m) on advertising in the US alone in 2012 and $37m (£22.4m) in the first nine months of 2013. Ogilvy & Mather previously handled the account until Gap ended the tie-up in 2012.

Beer brands shun NYC St Patrick’s Day parade


Beer brands Guinness, Heineken and Sam Adams took a stand for gay rights in America when they pulled their sponsorship of the St Patrick’s Day New York City parade. The brewers slammed organisers’ ban on openly gay marchers and claimed they did not want to be associated with an event that was seen to be oppressing freedom of speech.


Google Chromecast 

Google’s new smart TV offering, the £30 Chromecast HDMI plug-in dongle, launched in the UK earlier this week.  It allows users to turn their TV’s into internet TVs and access services such as YouTube, iPlayer and Google Chrome. It also features a number of branded apps from the likes of Red Bull and Washington Post.   Google recently opened Chromecast up to developers, with more than 3,000 registered, meaning there may be further branded content apps launching on the service in the coming months. 

Huffington Post 

Jimmy Maymann, Huffington Post CEO, told Marketing Week this week that the website is set to bring its mobile native advertising solution from the US to the UK this year – shifting native on from just the desktop and allowing marketers to book cross-platform content marketing activity.  Maymann also revealed that Huff Post Live, the 12-hour a day, 5-days a week online video show it launched in the US 18 months ago, will also roll out internationally. He hinted that the UK will be the next market it launches in – although it may be under a different branded guise.


@davidjonesOYW – global CEO of Havas quoting Larry Page’s keynote at Ted “Most people think companies are evil – & that’s kind of correct – ”We need revolutionary change not evolutionary change” Larry Page at #ted.”

@JoshFeldberg – co-founder of Future First Networks, Rentify and social network analyst at Doremus on the Dasani water scandal – ”Brought to you by the company that bottled tap water “@CocaCola: Join #WorldWaterDay celebrations! Raise a toast, take a pic #ToastToWater.”

@StefBard – managing partner and head of digital at MediaCom on Google’s launch of Chromecast earlier this week – ”Real winner in Chromecast UK launch is Red Bull.”

@Charlie_Boss – head of marketing at ESPN UK on whether all newspaper publishers should adopt paywalls“If paywall = revenue + better user experience + better data to help sell advertising, why aren’t all publishers using @NewsUK_Sales model?”


  • Tuesday 25 HTC is lifting the lid on its new flagship smartphone at a series of co-ordinated reveal events around the globe
  • Wednesday 26 Ryanair is holding an “experience event” at London’s Design Museum. The event will be hosted by new marketing chief Kenny Jacobs and CEO Michael O’Leary. 
  • Thursday 27 Budget fashion retailer H&M will be reporting its first quarter results, which takes in the Christmas trading period. H&M’s fourth quarter results fell short of analysts’ forecasts, so the retailer will be hoping demand for its festive ranges boosted sales during the three months to February.



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