The Paperchase row over Daily Mail advertising is unlikely to damage its brand perception

Stephan Shakespeare
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Paperchase backtracked quickly on its Daily Mail ad (Source: Getty)

Over recent days, Paperchase has found itself at the centre of a media furore after campaigners Stop Funding Hate attacked its decision to advertise a promotion on the front page of the Daily Mail.

In response, the brand withdrew the promotion and apologised on Twitter, sparking a second backlash from those accusing them of succumbing to bullying tactics by the activist group.

Our brand tracking data measures what impact the headlines had on Paperchase’s consumer perception.

The first thing to state is that the public noticed the news stories. Its attention score (whether someone has heard something about the brand) jumped by six points – from three per cent to nine per cent. However, Paperchase’s buzz score (whether what the person has heard about the brand is positive or negative) remained flat at around one. This suggests the story was quite divisive – with some people happy that they removed the promotion, and some angry with them for not standing up for their actions.

Read more: DEBATE: Was Paperchase right to stop advertising in the Daily Mail?

Paperchase is fortunate in the sense it has solid underlying brand perception. Its impression score (whether someone has a positive impression of the brand) is currently 17, and its quality score (whether someone thinks it represents good quality) stands at 17.

YouGov profiles provides further detail on Paperchase customers and their media habits. Our figures indicate they are more likely to read broadsheet newspapers than the average person (27 per cent vs 15 per cent). They are less likely to read red tops, 19 per cent vs 38 per cent, but are just as likely to read the Daily Mail as the general public (both 14 per cent).

They are also less likely than the average person to get their news from a print newspaper (seven per cent vs 10 per cent) and have embraced consuming current affairs through apps, with close to a quarter (23 per cent) getting news through an app on a mobile or tablet device, compared to one in eight (13 per cent) of the public.

The recent Paperchase situation reflects the pressure that brands are increasingly finding themselves under due to advertising choices. It is crucial that they understand their own customers and foster consumer loyalty in the longer term.

Read more: New ruler: Paperchase appoints former Pets at Home boss as chairman

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