Is Drinkaware’s ‘£100m’ campaign just a case of double counting?

Well we only ask because the Drinkaware campaign, funded by the UK’s big booze companies and some retailers including Asda and Tesco (where you get the cheapest booze of course) claims it is to increase its marketing efforts in a bid to stay the legislative hand of the hyperactive coalition government.

And we keep reading that this is a £100m campaign although it’s hard to detect much evidence of it anywhere apart from in pubs and the odd sticker in supermarkets.

So it’s surely a case of either the world’s worst and most invisible media planning or a cunning bit of double counting. That is, the producers and retailers are grossing up packaging costs and the like, and what they may have made if they’d sold this space to paying commercial customers, to arrive at this mind-boggling sum.

All of which is hardly likely to ‘change the behaviour’ of 18-30 year-olds who cheerfully load up with lower than cost price booze in these high-minded outlets.

The booze lobby will have been heartened by the Government’s decision to can the £75m Change4Life anti-obesity campaign (paid for by taxpayers via the COI) in the supposed belief that the food manufacturers will take up the burden themselves.

Well if they adopt the same approach as the Drinkaware lot we can expect to see at least £150m spent on anti-obesity and no-one will be any the wiser.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.