NEWS9 June 2022

UK marketers fear ‘cancel culture', finds CIM

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UK – Two-fifths of UK marketers fear brands could fall victim to a so-called global ‘cancel culture’, according to research from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).

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The research found that 67% of marketers were limiting their work to campaigns for British audiences and 60% said global marketing campaigns are challenging because of the need to be ‘politically correct’.

The CIM said that the survey also showed two-fifths feared being victims of ‘cancel culture’, where brands are pushed out of social or professional circles.

The findings are based on an online survey of 500 UK adults working in marketing carried out by Opinium between 9th and 16th March 2022.

The research also said that senior marketers were less worried of the risks of cancel culture compared with younger marketers, which the CIM said raised concerns about a lack of awareness among older professionals. 

Being aware and appreciative of the different cultures tops the list of challenges when creating an international campaign ( 39%), according to the research, with ensuring the campaign resonates with a global audience ( 34%) in second.

Making UK marketing campaigns translatable is third place ( 32%), with meeting global company brand guidelines ( 30%) in fourth. 

Marketers believed that consumers now favour ‘buying British’ as a result of the pandemic ( 58%) and due to Brexit ( 52%), according to the research. 

Additionally, two-fifths of respondents ( 40%) believed UK marketing campaigns are ‘export ready’.

CIM also said that ahead of the Qatar 2022 World Cup, brands are also re-evaluating sponsorship following controversy around the country’s human rights record.

Chris Daly, chief executive at CIM, said: “Across the world, consumers and employees are becoming more vocal in calling out companies when they put a foot wrong, making sure they’re held accountable for their actions.

“Yet this behaviour shouldn’t mean UK marketers shy away from being ambitious, scaling up campaigns and chasing global opportunities. We can’t risk losing out on international work because of a lack of confidence, especially when we’re trying to bounce back from the pandemic.”