Editor's Comment: Corporate visibility makes sense

By Noelle McElhatton, marketingmagazine.co.uk, Tuesday, 29 March 2011 09:00AM

Do we, as consumers, really care who makes the products and services we buy?

Noelle McElhatton

Noelle McElhatton

The short answer is yes. Procter & Gamble is aware of this, which is why it's embarking on its first-ever UK corporate branding exercise in a TV campaign launching this weekend.

Building up good will and awareness with its core audience, in this case mums, will stand P&G in good stead. Arch-rival Unilever has already gone down the corporate ad route, as has Reckitt Benckiser, after the latter discovered in 2009 that only 3% of UK consumers were familiar with its brand name.

Corporate campaigns are important not just for the current health of brands, but for the long-term future of the corporations behind them.

That's because in recent years, consumers have become aware that brands are not some spontaneously generated aspect of commerce. While not familiar with the details of the process, the man in the street knows that brands are created, researched, nurtured and promoted by big corporations.

If a company misbehaves, one highly effective way to attack it is by protesting with your purse and taking your custom elsewhere.

Conversely, brands and the companies that own them can benefit from a positive position on issues of the moment - whether it's supporting charities, schools and sporting events or combating discrimination and negative portrayals of advertising.

Moreover, the bigger the issue, the more effectively it will be tackled by the pooled resources of the corporation - as was recently demonstrated by the £1m-plus contributions made to Comic Relief by Sainsbury's, TK Maxx and BA.

By highlighting in its ad the role played by mums, there's no reason why the P&G corporate brand shouldn't be as famous as its products.

Noelle.McElhatton@haymarket.com

This article was first published on marketingmagazine.co.uk

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