January 6, 2015 By LLOYD HUGHES 2 minute read


New year. New me. It’s everywhere on social media, with people either stating it, or hating it. It’s the biggest of January clichés as everyone seems determined to make improvements in their lives with a fresh start for 2015. This applies to a lot of aspects in life, however personal weight is probably the most popular foe to fight at this time of year.

Apart from the diehard gym bunnies, we’re probably all guilty of a little Christmas indulgence, which has seen a plethora of expanding waistlines, if not outright additional chins (in my case, two, quite possibly three) all over the country and across the full spectrum of society. Everybody gets fat at Christmas, after all that’s what it’s all about right?

So with everyone now fitness mad and determined to burn off the Christmas pudding in time for the inevitable Easter egg re-padding, the fitness and nutrition marketplace is a competitive yet lucrative one.

But the level of competition means that the battle to get attention is a fierce one. Marks & Spencer managed to do so today with a mouth-watering article on the Mail Online. The website is the most read news site in the world, so any positive coverage there is worth its weight in marketing gold, which is something M&S is keenly aware of.

The article had the title:

Burgers, fish and chips and pulled pork… all high-protein, low-carb and UNDER 500 CALORIES: Just how did M&S create the easiest New Year diet ever?

All of us in the office are currently on a healthy eating kick, which means that sweets, chocolate and various other forms of office junk food are, if not outright banned, at least out of sight. So with already a quiet longing for some wholesome food coming to the fore, this is just the sort of thing that catches the eye immediately. I practically had to be restrained from heading for my car and driving straight to the M&S food hall. Those gastronomic sirens had me at ‘Burgers’!

Now I do need to point out that the article is ‘sponsored by M&S’, which effectively means that they’ve paid for it, however it helps to highlight the value of editorial. Whilst it’s not strictly PR, the use of an article rather than a banner advert will provide M&S with much more traction with the public. Working in the industry increases your awareness of various forms of marketing, so you tend to look out for the words ‘sponsored post’, however Joe Public probably isn’t quite as discerning.

Excellent work, M&S, you’ve made by post Christmas podge crusade that much harder. I’ll have the pulled pork, please.

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