NEWS: Labour labels Tory ads ‘disaster’ from results of research

The Conservative Party’s pounds 1 million campaign to recreate the ‘feelgood factor’ has backfired, according to private polling by Labour.

The Conservative Party’s pounds 1 million campaign to recreate the

‘feelgood factor’ has backfired, according to private polling by Labour.



An overwhelming majority of the former Tory supporters who took part in

group discussions told Labour researchers that M&C Saatchi’s slogan -

‘Yes it hurt. Yes it worked’ - only reminded them of their continuing

economic insecurity. Many voters said the poster blitz merely made them

recall the job losses that were still affecting their families, friends

and neighbours.



Labour officials claimed the former Tories were unimpressed by the

apologetic tone of the ads. ‘People see it as arrogant and not as an

apology,’ one Labour source said. ‘We have tested the campaign

thoroughly and we can only view it as a disaster.’



The only crumb of comfort for the Tories was that the campaign appeared

to have a high recognition. Many voters, shown a copy of the poster by

Labour researchers, had already seen or heard about it.



Sources at M&C Saatchi and the Tory party dismissed Labour’s attack as

‘pure propaganda’ and insisted the campaign had achieved its objective.

‘Our own research shows that people did not say they would vote Tory

tomorrow, but we did not expect that,’ one insider said. ‘The important

thing is that they have got the message. This is only the first stage of

a long haul.’



Brian Mawhinney, the Tory party chairman, told M&C Saatchi he is

delighted with the campaign. However, some Tory MPs expressed initial

reservations about reminding people of the ‘hurt’.



Tory officials said the advertising would proceed as planned. A national

press campaign, bought by Optimedia, will break shortly using the same

slogan - written by M&C Saatchi’s freelancer, Peers Carter, who also

devised the poster.



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