So this afternoon, I got an e-mail which I’m pretty sure is from the team who handle Cillit Bang. I can’t tell for certain because I it’s from someone at cohnwolfe.com, and I don’t know enough about the relationships between these various organisations to be able to say that it’s totally reliable. Anyway, the e-mail contains what appears to be a fairly honourable and sincere apology for the whole Barry Scott comments-as-marketing fiasco that I wrote about on Friday. And although I still have significant reservations about the idea of fictional marketing characters leaving messages and commenting on other people’s sites, I’ve decided to take them at their word, accept the apology and leave it at that. The e-mail that they sent is below:
We are writing to you in response to the Barry Scott posting on 30th September 2005. We‚Äôre all aware that Barry Scott, the advertising character is a marketing creation and we have been responsible for raising his awareness. The posting on 30th September was unplanned and an error of judgement and we unequivocally apologise for this. We recognise that it was inappropriate in context.
The Barry Scott character has appeared in a number of spoof websites and weblogs, created by people unconnected to the Reckitt Benckiser brand. The weblog posting on your site was not endorsed by Reckitt Benckiser or any of the advertising agencies that are mentioned and was a one off error from which lessons have been learnt. We are sorry for any offence it has unwittingly caused.
We would like to have an opportunity to apologise personally, if you would like to speak to us please do let us know the best way to reach you.
The Cillit Bang team
Addendum: I wrote one more follow-up on this subject called: A few odd bits of detective work in which I tried to tie up some of the loose ends of the story.