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Good and Bad PR: Argos scores for nostalgia, Just Eat fails to score food hygiene

Good PR

Argos is ramping up its PR activity in the run-up to the busiest shopping season of the year.

Known for its tempting three-for-two deals on all toys that pop up every now and again, helping to substantially reduce the cost of Christmas gift toy purchases for parents everywhere, Argos has just sent out a simple story to keep it forefront of minds in the approaching toy-buying frenzy.

I was reading a story this week about Argos revealing which were the most popular toys from the last 45 years, based on the retailer’s bestseller data. It’s a nice touch to celebrate the brand’s anniversary and get some toy-focused coverage before the festive season.

So, from Shrinky Dinks in 1973 (17 years before I was born, so you’ll have to Google what those were I’m afraid) to Furby toys in 2000 (had one of those) and Cozmo the White Robot last Christmas, people could read through the list and feel a touch nostalgic… and a bit of reminiscing always adds fuel to the PR fire.

It was a great, picture-led story that was simple for it to put together and achieved coverage on the likes of the Daily Mail, Mirror, Metro and plenty of others.

Here is the all important list:

1973 – Shrinky Dinks

1974 – Risk board game

1975 – Othello boardgame

1976 – Stretch Armstrong

1977 – Star Wars toys, including figurines of Luke, Darth & R2D2 star wars

1978 – Dungeons & Dragons

1979 – Strawberry Shortcake

1980 – Hungry Hippos board game

1981 – Rubik’s Cube

1982 – Lego train set – Lego 255 basic train set

1983 – Strawberry Shortcake 5” Scented Doll in mint

1984 – Cabbage patch dolls 

1985 – Transformers City Commander Ultra Magnus transformer

1986 – Lazer tag 

1987 – Sylvanian Families – the grow bear family

1988 – Ghostbusters Proton Park 

1989 – Optimus Prime – Transformers Evolution Optimus Prime 2 Pack

1990 – Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles action figures 

1991 – Gameboy 1992 – Barbie, weekend Barbie with a denim outfit

1993 – Thunderbirds Tracey Island

1994 – Power Rangers Action Figures

1995 – POGs

1996 – Toy Story Buzz Lightyear Action Figure

1997 – Tamagotchi blue and pink model

1998 – Teksta the dog 

1999 – Bob the Builder

2000 – Furby

2001 – Who Wants to be a Millionaire board game

2002 – Bratz Dolls – Jade and Cloe

2003 – Beyblades

2004 – Robosapiens

2005 – BMX Bike 2006 – Xbox 360

2007 – Nintendo Wii

2008 – In the Night Garden Iggle Piggle 

2009 – Disney High School Musical 3 Dance Mat (Playstation II)

2010 – Zhu Zhu/Go Go Pet Hamsters

2011 – Leapfrog LeapPad Explorer Tablet/Electronic Test Tube

2012 – Skylanders Giants/Nerf Gun

2013 – Furby Boom

2014 – The Frozen snow globe

2015 – Barbie Saddle n Ride/Star Wars The Force Awakens Kylo Ren Deluxe Electronic Light Sabre/Pie Face

2016 – Hatchimals purple egg

2017 – Cozmo white robot

Bad PR

Just Eat is, by the looks of things, about to take a bit of a kicking from the press, after a BBC Investigation has revealed that lots of takeaways with a zero-hygiene rating are listed on the app for users to order from.

Now whilst this is mostly bad PR for the zero-hygiene takeaways themselves, it’s also not good for Just Eat; because people will think twice before ordering through the app now.

Apparently, half of outlets that were found to have a zero hygiene rating by the Food Standards Agency in Manchester, London and Bristol appear on the app, which is quite a substantial figure.

Now, a consumer rights campaigner has called for the takeaway app to start displaying hygiene scores on each of its listed takeaway pages, so that people can be aware of this before deciding whether or not to order.

Just Eat has said all the right things; that it’s taking the issue seriously and is working hard to raise standards of its listed takeaways (although, ultimately, it’s down to the takeaways to sort this out).

However, the fact that this has started off with a BBC investigation and Just Eat seems to be the focus, rather than the takeaways themselves, poses a threat to the app’s popularity.

Written by Shannon Peerless, 10 Yetis @ShazzaYeti on Twitter.
Seen any good or bad PR lately? You know what to do @10Yetis on Twitter or on email

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