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Big brands key to 'big society'

10th May 2011
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An effective way for brands to boost engagement with their products is to exploit UK consumers’ nostalgia for a sense of community that they feel no longer exists, according to a report.
The survey undertaken among 3,000 adults by marketing and communications agency G2 Joshua revealed that 70% of respondents felt that being part of a community mattered to them. But four out of five believed that this sense of community did not exist where they lived.
Despite a popular belief to the contrary, even the Royal Wedding failed to create a community feeling among three quarters of respondents.
Tim Hipperson, G2 Joshua’s chief executive, said: "It is crucial for brands moving forwards to stand up and take note, adapting their marketing strategies accordingly for what their customers want. A sense of community clearly matters to a vast number of consumers, which provides the perfect opportunity for brands to engage with their audience in a way that is meaningful to them."
Bizarrely, more than 50% of those questioned believed that household brands would be key to bringing back a sense of local community in the UK, although they failed to clarify how. Supermarkets topped the list in helping to generate a community feel, with Tesco coming out top at over 50%, followed by Waitrose (23%) and Morrisons (20%).
Other brands were deemed to have little impact on community spirit, however. Only 9% felt that Innocent made any difference to the local community, a mere 6% believed that Nike did and only 5% felt the same about Red Bull.

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