Responsible marketing – the good, the bad and the ugly TV advertising today – Heinz, Islas Canarias and John Lewis

This month, my awards for the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, through a responsible marketing lens, go to the following brands for their current TV campaigns

GOOD award goes to HEINZ beans, for their fabulous new fridge pack – a resealable tub of beans that is 1kg (2.5 tins) but lasts up to 5 days once opened.  Their campaign is all about economic savvy by not wasting beans, and fitting around busy families that eat at different times of day. And it implicitly builds the message that beans are an everyday staple. But it’s also ‘Sustainably Sensible’ as it helps reduce food wastage – of which we waste 1/3 of what we buy. Spot on, clap clap.

BAD award goes to Islas Canarias, for a campaign ‘to beat the winter blues’ – which features a polar bear enjoying the sunshine and beach. Nothing like totally nullifying all efforts from the climate change community to get the message across that p0lar bears will die if the artic warms up. Polar bears need the cold! Doh!

UGLY award goes to John Lewis – for their 60 second Christmas ad, which finishes off a beautiful array of Christmas present planning scenes with a small boy running outside to his dog left sat in the snow by an outdor kennel and leaving him a Christmas stocking. Although JL’s PR team say that the dog is a deerhound which often does live outside, and all standards were adhered to during production, this is a classical example of just not stepping back and looking at the big picture – do we really want to give the impression that leaving dogs outside in cold and snowy weather is the responsible thing to do? We have enough abandoned dogs at Christmas as it is. Quite shocking that no-one at John Lewis caught this, especially given their strong CSR and brand values around responsible citizenship, animal welfare, and socially responsible marketing.

Just a reminder that sometimes, for brand teams, the road to hell is paved with good intentions… and perhaps a Stop Look Listen sensecheck is required….