East of England marketing firms are being limited by fears over cancel culture, the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) warns.
Paul Mackman, vice chair of CIM East of England, said that many of the region’s agencies are “shying away” from ambitious campaigns due to concerns of unexpectedly upsetting audiences.
Research from CIM found that 67pc of UK marketers are limiting their work to campaigns for British audiences over fears of offending other cultures.
The group, which represents the marketing industry, said that as a result of this the sector could be undermining annual international sales worth £11.7bn.
Mr Mackman said: “Across the world, consumers and employees are quite rightly becoming more vocal in calling out companies when they put a foot wrong, making sure they’re held accountable for their actions.
“There are many brilliant agencies in the East of England yet the research shows that marketers are shying away from ambitious, scaled-up campaigns and chasing global opportunities.
“We can’t risk losing out on international work because of a lack of confidence, especially when we’re trying to bounce back from the pandemic.
“Global propositions might take a bit more research to ensure that nothing is lost in translation, but we absolutely have exportable skills in the region.”
A survey by the CIM of marketing professionals in the UK found that 60pc said they believe global marketing campaigns are challenging because they need to be ‘politically correct’.
It also discovered that 41pc fear being victims of ‘cancel culture’ – a form of ostracism after a brand has been deemed to be offensive to sections of society.
Senior marketers are less worried about the risks compared to younger marketers, the CIM found.
Mr Mackman added: “It’s no doubt that the UK marketing industry can produce incredible work.
“Producing globally successful work requires following best practise; doing the due diligence to understand audiences and their sensibilities, and then testing campaigns thoroughly before taking them to market.
“If marketing professionals want to open up more opportunities for their brands, they need to urgently upskill in these areas.”
If you are interested in original article by Derin Clark you can find it here