The value of online advertising – PR Week Post #20

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Not specifically healthcare, but today’s news that the UK has become the first major economy where advertisers spend more on internet advertising than on television advertising really struck a chord.  A record £1.75bn online spend in the first six months of the year (Guardian online). Perhaps, when it comes to evaluating coverage and relative impact between articles, a positive weighting should be applied to online media outlets?

On a slightly separate note (but nonetheless related), I was slightly less surprised to see that a newdimension in social online interaction platform has been launched to testers within the public domain. The developers of Google Wave say that it will “further enable real-time communication and collaboration using richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps, and more”.  With most of us still in a state of Twitter infancy, a newer more powerful application seems a little scary. Check it out athttp://wave.google.com/help/wave/about.html though – seeing is believing.

That said, in a moment of open-mindedness, I applied to the Google Wave Team to be a platform evaluator.  I will let you know how I get on…

Is alcohol the new tobacco? – PR WEEK POST #19

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Since writing my last blog on binge drinking, a new report has been published to offer a solution.  Especially among the young.

Earlier this week the British Medical Association published a report (link takes you to the PDF) entitled: ‘Under the influence: The damaging effect of alcohol marketing on young people’. In this report, a set of nine recommendations are made to the UK Government – including the ‘implementation and rigorous enforcement of a comprehensive ban on all alcohol marketing communications’.

I am not going to speculate on the likely positive or negative effects a ban may have on our social or economic picture but I can’t help wondering if alcohol is now viewed as the new tobacco.  Casting our minds back to the 1970s, it is rumoured that the US government finally decided to ban tobacco advertising when the social and health costs of managing smoking-related illnesses outweighed the taxation income.

Drink prices keep falling and healthcare keeps rising.  Are we in the same place with alcohol as we were with tobacco?