Boris’ Get Ready for Brexit campaign misses its ever-moving target

The UK’s National Audit Office doesn’t think much of the Government’s ‘Get Ready for Brexit’ campaign – costing a supposed £100m – reporting that: “On 1 September 2019, the government launched a major communications campaign to help individuals and businesses prepare for EU exit, including newspaper and television adverts, improved guidance, and direct engagement with industry.

“However, at this late stage and with ongoing uncertainty about the prospect of no deal on 31 October, this may have limited impact.”

Too right. Such a communications blitz only made sense if there was to be a no-deal exit on October 31, now highly unlikely. Leaving the EU with a deal will means years of complex negotiations, giving businesses time to adjust.

From the start the Get Ready campaign, from agency group Engine, looked more like a taxpayer-funded General Election campaign for Boris Johnson’s Leave supporters in the Tory Party. A more modest B2B direct marketing campaign would have served perfectly well for businesses.

More and more the Government’s antics resemble those of Rowan Atkinson’s Blackadder (as portrayed by Michael Gove perhaps) coming up with endless cunning plans that come to nought.

Blackadder and his chums eventually met their end at the hands of German machine guns towards the end of the Great War. The last we heard UK government borrowing was soaring as export order books dry up.

Should be an interesting General Election campaign.

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About Stephen Foster

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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.

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