BRAND SPEND ANALYSIS: ScottishPower diversifies with cross-utility strategy and e-business interests

ScottishPower, like many of its contemporaries, has grown and diversified in the recent past.

ScottishPower, like many of its contemporaries, has grown and

diversified in the recent past.

No longer content to supply just the electrical needs of a national

customer base, it now also supplies gas and water and has a controlling

interest in Thus - formerly Scottish Telecom. The group also includes

Manweb and Southern Water.

In November last year, the company had its merger bid for PacifiCorp -

the US electric utility - approved, making it the first overseas company

to own a US utility. Moreover, it maintains an e-interest through its

ownership of the Demon internet service provider, acquired in May


With its head office in Glasgow, the ScottishPower group employs around

24,000 people.

Agencies ScottishPower’s media buying and planning is mostly handled by

Feather Brooksbank and Starcom Motive.

The creative work for the company is almost all provided by Bartle Bogle


Total spend and the media mix Overall spend across all the major

advertising media for the 12 months to April 2000 was just over pounds 7

million. Of this, press and TV advertising took the lion’s share - with

some direct mail and outdoor activity plus a dusting of radio ads making

up the difference.

pounds 3.7 million was spent on TV advertising and pounds 2.7 million on

the press.

Spend details Press advertising was consistent throughout the 12-month

period. But November and December last year and April 2000 saw the

greatest spend on press drives: pounds 610,000, pounds 708,000 and

pounds 536,000 respectively.

The tabloids and the mid-market titles picked up most of the

ScottishPower’s advertising spend on this medium, with The Mirror, Daily

Record and Daily Mail leading the pack.

TV advertising kicked off in October and the level of spend was

maintained up to April. Spend in April was pounds 262,000 due to an

outdoor promotional push. Direct mail activity could best be described

as sporadic.

Conclusion With the increasing diversification of the energy industry’s

major players and the mounting levels of competition this engenders, any

company wishing to thrive will have to be bullish with its


ScottishPower seems to recognise this.

In April, the company launched a six-figure online ad campaign - the

first for ScottishPower. It followed this, in May, by announcing a

one-third increase to its marketing team, with the aim of splitting this

team to focus on individual services within the sector.

This dynamic approach could be the key to success in a coming year that

is bound to be a hot time for the energy industry.

Research by AC Nielsen MMS tel: 01344-627553