Author Archives: Benedict Pringle

UKIP: More Tory than the Tories

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The Labour Party’s line of attack against UKIP during their conference in Doncaster is “UKIP: more Tory than the Tories”.

The aim of the communications is to remind people in Labour’s heartlands who have a deep and visceral aversion to the Conservative Party that a flirtation with UKIP is tantamount to getting into bed with Margaret Thatcher.

These ads are aimed squarely at the working class in the midlands and north who might be tickled by Farage’s brand of anti-elitism and pub populism.

I’m not a fan of the strap line – it just reads like it’s been written by a Labour spokesperson. It’s void of humanity and is not the language of everyday speech.

The strategy, however, is sound enough.

A selection of recent Yes! campaign materials

Yes scotland poster one opportunity

yes scotland future in our hands

Yes Scotland poster advert - only yes guarantees power

yes scotland once in a lifetime  yes scotland top 20 wealthiest countries

Yes scotland - rebuttal of devo max  Yes scotland - labour as tory front men

Yes scotland tories rebelling over devo max  Yes scotland - wealth, talent and indepedence

Yes Scotland - days to remember  Yes scotland - pension rebuttal

The quality and variation of the Yes! campaign’s campaigning materials, adverts and posters has been far superior to that of the Better Together campaign throughout the referendum period.

The Yes! campaign brief of ‘sell anger towards a Tory-led coalition and hope for the future of an independent Scotland’ is a more creatively fertile proposition than that of Better Together’s ‘sell the fear of break-up and the maintenance of the status quo’.

Nevertheless, it’s one thing to have a great brief and quite another to deliver against it as thoroughly as they have.  If it was down to the campaigning materials alone, the Yes! campaign would be starting the victory party already.

A selection of recent Better Together campaign materials

Better together is this your plan b alex salmond posterMore powers to scotland

better together - weekly shop

Better together team scotland voting no

better together david beckham

no thanks better together i love scotland no thanks better together i love my kids

The volume of campaigning material coming out of Scotland and beyond is absolutely huge.

Here’s a small selection highlighting a few of the approaches that the Better Together campaign have taken in their communications.

Whilst there are some solid bits in there, the No campaign have struggled to come up with an inspiring visual language or tone of voice that runs through their campaign.

The Woman Who Made Up Her Mind – new Better Together referendum broadcast

Sorry mate, don’t mean to embarrass you, but…er… your strategy is showing

The Better Together campaign have released a referendum broadcast that tries to appeal to undecided female voters.

It features a mother talking to the camera about her concerns for an independent Scotland: the security of Scotland’s oil supply, funding for education, the way “there’s only so many hours in the day and there’s so much to weigh up”.

The script wreaks of inauthenticity – it lists every single Better Together line of attack without breath.   It’s so obviously aimed at undecided female voters that it feels terribly awkward.  If the average viewer’s initial reaction to seeing your comms is “ah, I can see what you’re doing there pal” rather than some level of emotional gut response, you’ve completely ballsed it up.

And the characterisation is fairly patronising – the lead woman is mainly concerned about household tasks and complains that it’s her husband who cares about politics.  It’s this latter element that has led to something of a twitter storm using #PatronisingBTLady

H/T to @frances_ryan for sending

The Worst Political Slogan Ever

Benedict Pringle:

Guido has caught the Labour Party communicating using the most cringe-worthy political clichés and empty phraseology. Guido’s analysis of Labour’s recent copy-writing is very amusing indeed.

Originally posted on Guido Fawkes:

Labour’s slogan for the summer really runs off the tongue:

“The Choice – The Labour future / The Tory threat”.

Of its eight words, three of them are “the”. Catchy.

Worse still, the party has now deleted a tweet plugging another new slogan to accompany Ed Balls’s speech on the economy:

“A choice between a Labour plan to make Britain better off and fairer for the future or more of the same from the same old Tories.”

Tough on punctuation, tough on the causes of punctuation. 

Could they have come up with anything clunkier than “make Britain better off and fairer”? It has a grand total of 2 ‘a’s, 3 ‘the’s, 2 ‘same’s, an ‘of’, an ‘off’, a ‘for’, a ‘to’ and a ‘from’. It is supposed to clarify “the choice” between Labour and the Tories, yet you have to read it three times before you can work out where…

View original 18 more words

Israel Defense Forces social media content

Israel political communication social media

Israel political communication social media hamas quote

Israel political communication social media ceasefire

The Israel Defense Forces have been running a Facebook page since 2011.  During the most recent and ongoing conflict the IDF have been posting creative content communicating updates about their operations and justifying their actions.

The objective of the communications is to get people both inside and outside the reason to understand their response and make sure that their case is being made in the battle on the airwaves.

It’s very well put together and is an interesting example of contemporary propaganda.

Thanks to  for alerting me to it.

Let’s Stay Together

Today sees the launch of a UK-wide campaign called Let’s Stay Together which aims to give a voice to everyone who doesn’t have a vote in the decision to break up Britain, but wants to try to influence the vote in favour of Union.

The campaign’s aim is to get pro-union people from across the UK, who don’t have a vote in the referendum, to publicly state online, and maybe even in real life, that “Scotland is part of our UK family and I want us to stay together”.

The launch piece of content uses Queen’s ‘You’re My Best Friend’ as a soundtrack and features celebrities from all over the UK including: Tanni Grey-Thompson,  Eddie Izzard, Ross Kemp, Ian Rush, June Sarpong, Dan Snow, Susannah Constantine and Trinny Woodall.

The video is wonderfully upbeat and is markedly different in tone from much of the Better Together campaign.

The video and wider campaign cleverly gives license for people from across the whole of the UK to have their say in the referendum.  It is carefully respectful of the fact that it is the right of the Scots to decide whether to remain in the union.  But the video will give confidence to those who might have worried about articulating their positive feelings about the UK to speak out and let Scotland know that they do care about the future of the country and want the jocks as part of it.

And whilst I’m at it, I may as well compliment them on their snazzy logo, very nice:

lets stay together Britain scotland logo