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Good and Bad PR: And the bad PR award does NOT go to Phillip Schofield! The UK Government wins it again!

What a week in the world of communications. Government scandal (shocker), celebrity scandal (obvious), music scandal (boring) and corporate scandal (yawn). Let’s get about it.

Bad PR

The Government

Food costs

The Government has had another really tough week and Rishi just can’t seem to break the negative news cycle. This week it got hammered for considering price caps on food. In my opinion, it was rightly pilloried.

The real issue that needs looking at are the supply chain costs for food manufacturers, with a specific focus on the energy companies. We have several food and product manufacturing clients which got trapped in long-term energy price contracts when the prices started to rocket after the invasion of Ukraine.

Some of these contracts meant that companies needed to sell 40% more of their product just to stay alive, let alone try and grow. Very few companies, large or small, can hold their RRP at the pre-war price given all the supply chain cost increases and this is where the Government needs to focus its attention, and for once, not at the supermarkets.

OFGEM has issued several soft warnings that it is not happy that industrial and domestic energy prices have not returned to pre-war levels. I think now is the time for it to start taking enforcement or investigation action.

WhatsApp-gate

The second war of words that Downing Street got embroiled in is the seeming “Rebekah Vardy” approach to keeping WhatsApp messages. Boris Johnson said he was more than happy for his WhatsApp messages to be handed over to the Covid inquiry bods.

The Government, initially via Downing St, said it did not have the messages (presumably they too are in Davey Jones’s locker) and then it pivoted its stance. It came out and said it should not have to hand over “irrelevant” material concerning Government staff.

Given the furore over the leaking of Matt Hancock’s messages, you can see why it may want to keep Boris’s messages out of the public eye. I can only imagine the sheer volume of high-brow sexting from Bozza to Carrie. I am going to hazard a guess it was one-way, and was better phrased than Peter Crouch’s recent revelation that he just sends a beaver emoji to Abbey Clancy to announce his readiness. Good on ya Peter.

Lloyds announcement

The final bad news story for the week for The Government came from Lloyds. The bank announced that UK business-owner confidence had declined for the first time in three months.

Companies are saying that they expect to increase prices over the next year and unemployment levels are expected to rise. This all comes after just a few weeks after IMF figures showed that the UK was in a better position than many analysts thought and with inflation finally showing signs of slowing.

Good PR

The Government!

It has not been all bad news for Downing Street though. The business and trade secretary was able to announce this week that the new, post-Brexit, trade deal with Oz and New Zealand was coming into force with a bang.

What was one of the first item to be shipped from the UK? You guessed right, Beano comics. We are in safe hands after all. Well negotiated.

Huffy PR

Royal Blood

Moving to a far lighter note and it turns out not everyone are fans of all things Royal. A rock band I have never heard of, called Royal Blood, did a classic Elton John, and flounced off in a huff.

Their issue: no one knew who they were when they took to the BBC R1 One Big Weekend stage in Dundee. To be fair to them, to sandwich a rock band in-between Niall Horan and Lewis Capaldi (I have heard of both of them) was a bit of a hospital pass.

They could end up having the last laugh though. The video of them abusing the crowd and exiting the stage has now has 20m of views on social media and I bet they will have had more stream on Spotify this week than ever before.

Nostalgic PR

The Chopper

Let’s end on a nice nostalgic high. Kids bike brand Raleigh is bringing back The Chopper (I always say that name with an Austrian accent, must be an Arnie thing). The (now Dutch) company says that fans of The Chopper have been demanding a new version for over 10 years.

I too have fond memories of The Chopper from when I was a kid. Fast forward to now and 46-year-old me (Capricorn) will probably not be rushing out to buy a new one.

That being said, if Raleigh can get the cool kids of Instagram to take a liking to them, then all of our own kids will be all over the revitalised brand. Nice one Raleigh! Just hoping that it has made that bollock-troubling gear shift a bit easier to use on the new model.

Got it right or wrong, or just want to share pics of your own Chopper, you know where to find me on The Twitter - @10Yetis


Written by Andy Barr, owner of 10 Yetis Digital. Seen any good or bad PR lately? Abuse and contradictory points welcomed over on The Twitter @10Yetis or andy@10Yetis.co.uk on email

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