I saw an interesting article in today’s copy of the Metro in Manchester. (I am sure the London readers saw it too!) In a study of about 400 ten and eleven year olds were shown alcohol adverts and campaigns for soft drinks and cereals as part of the research. Three out of four recognised the fictional Fosters Lager characters – Brad and Dan. Less than half could link the drumming gorilla with Cadburys. (I really think that the drumming gorilla appeared later on in the evening so children would not necessarily seen the ad. It is all down to — was it really an audience that Cadburys was targeting with that ad?). The Ben and Jerry’s logo was familiar to three out of four children. Alcohol Concern commissioned the study and said that advertisers should be forced to stop linking drinking with glamorous images. I think Alcohol Concern need a drink if they think Brad and Dan are glamorous!
Well continuing on with the Unleash your Power of PR book today I read about surveys funnily enough which makes the article I read even more interesting. Research tools for effective PR measurement include – Surveys, News Content Analysis and Statistical Modelling. Your survey sample or participants need to accurately match your programs target audience. Broad based profiles are almost meaningless. Well looking at todays article – the survey was of 400 – 10-11 year olds. I would think the perfect demographic to ask (especially if they were boys )if they watched sport with their dads? If I were an advertising agency for an alcohol company I would consider football or rugby fans as a demographic for advertising my branded products. Children going along to the football possibly with their dads would be exposed to those ads and therefore be a lot more familiar with those brands if asked to identify them with a line up of logos. Hmm no beer ads at sport! It would be easier to ban the advertising industry. 😉
Being able to manipulate research for publicity seems a bit odd when you think about it. Fair enough if it is genuine but looking closer at todays article we don’t know where the people where surveyed – from the results Alcohol Concern want to”force” advertisers to stop linking drinking with glamorous images. I suppose that is one way of looking at it – Another angle could be that Alcohol Concern want to “force” dads and sons not to watch sport together as the sons will be exposed to images of glamorous alcohol logos. More meaningful PR could go a long way for Alcohol Concern. Pity about todays article though as you read it and think so what! I suppose there is a PR agency somewhere out there saying we got you coverage in the Metro though!