Magazine article Marketing


Magazine article Marketing


Article excerpt

Public displays broad mistrust

Robin Maynard, senior communications consultant, The Forster Company, London SE1

The Superbrands Organisation survey quoted in your feature, 'Brands: the new politics' (Marketing, July 26), claims that most people would prefer Richard Branson as PM to Tony Blair. This makes headline-grabbing copy, but reflects a non-choice. Rather more surveys suggest the public trusts neither politicians nor corporates to rule the world.

A US Business Week survey revealed that more than 50% of respondents didn't believe "what was good for business was good for Americans". And Edelman PR found in 2000 that only 5% saw either government or companies as 'making the world a better place' .This deficit of trust in governments and corporates has begun to widen the appeal of the anti-globalisation messages.

Yet the public has aspirations for 'good business'. A MORI poll conducted for The Forster Company in January found that one-third of respondents wanted companies to put their house in order on social and ethical issues. During the general election, a Business in the Community survey found that 94% of all respondents wanted large firms to adopt social and environmental reporting by the next election.

Like a politician seeking election, a corporate seeking public approval must convince 'the electorate' of its personal beliefs. It needs to demonstrate it is taking a stance in the greater good, beyond mere self-promotion. The rewards? It depends if you believe companies should have a more developed set of objectives than simply making money.

Why the credit card 0% APR phenomenon doesn't make sense

Charles Turner, client development director, BPM, London W1

After years of ripping us off with exorbitant interest rate charges it's a pleasant change to see that credit card marketers have brought a whole new meaning to the word 'charity'. Going from 26% APR on outstanding balances to 0% in the space of a few years is a first, but what about the business sense?

A sector caught up in a frenzied attack on market share is offering willing consumers interest-free deals for six months, but with no lock-in clauses. …

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