Hague slams poster ads as Tories move to reduce adspend

William Hague has attacked poster advertising as a waste of money and warned that the agency that wins the Conservative Party account will have a slimline budget at the next general election.

William Hague has attacked poster advertising as a waste of money

and warned that the agency that wins the Conservative Party account will

have a slimline budget at the next general election.



The Tory leader said his party had learned lessons from last year’s

European Parliament elections, when it won an unexpected victory over

Labour despite running virtually no advertising.



’We did better without plastering the whole country with expensive

posters. We actually concentrated on getting the message right,’ Hague

said.



’We didn’t put up 10,000 posters saying that but we did have a message

that people agreed with, that they believed in, that we believed in and

that’s why we won. Now that is what we will do at the next general

election.’



Tory strategists say the agency chosen to take over from M&C Saatchi

will get the money to run a newspaper campaign, but poster spending will

be cut. One line of attack will be to counter an expected Labour theme

of ’better the devil you know, don’t take a chance on the Tories.’ The

Tories will claim that Tony Blair could be replaced by Chancellor Gordon

Brown during the next Parliament if Labour wins.



The Tories have invited five agencies to pitch - Banks Hoggins

O’Shea/FCB, Bell Pottinger, Hype, Yellow M, and the Immediate Sales

Company, a subsidiary of M&C Saatchi.



At the 1997 general election, the Tories spent pounds 13 million on

advertising and Labour and the Referendum Party spent pounds 7 million

each.



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