Magazine article Marketing

Editor's Comment: Turkey Brand Is Taking a Risk

Magazine article Marketing

Editor's Comment: Turkey Brand Is Taking a Risk

Article excerpt

Bernard Matthews is spending pounds 3m on a cam-paign that pushes its heritage and portrays its staff as proud employees. It draws inspiration from other 'turnaround' brands, notably McDonald's.

In theory, using McDonald's as inspiration is a great idea. Not so long ago, the fast-food company was using corporate muscle to fend off consumers who criticised its farming methods, but it now has an open dialogue with the very organisations it would once have slammed the door on. Although not everyone has been won over, the brand provides a great example of how a company can change negative perceptions rapidly.

However, it may still be too soon for Bernard Matthews to embark on such a campaign. Last year, headlines levelled accusations of cruelty at the company. It is still dogged by YouTube clips of workers using live turkeys as baseballs and footballs, but it was the outbreak of the H5N1 strain of bird flu at one of its farms, and the subsequent mass cull, that finally drove consumers away. …

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