Almost 17 percent of senior marketers say their organizations have bought advertising in return for a news story, according to the results of the fifth annual PRWeek/Manning Selvage & Lee (MS&L) Marketing Management Survey of 279 US chief marketing officers, directors of marketing and marketing managers, reports MarketingCharts.
Some 7 percent of marketers said their organizations have had an implicit/non-verbal agreement with a reporter or editor that they expected to see favorable coverage of their company or products in exchange for advertising.
And 5 percent of marketers said their companies had paid or provided a gift of value to an editor or producer in exchange for a news story about their company or its products.
"These results indicate that there continues to be a group of marketing executives that do not respect the proper role of news media," said Mark Hass, global chief executive officer of Publicis Groupe's MS&L. "Even the smallest percentage of people who are willing to pay in return for a news story creates an ethical issue that the marketing industry needs to address."
When survey respondents were asked if the gift or payment was publicly disclosed to the audience, a total of 58 percent of marketers whose companies had given a gift said it was not.
Moreover, the majority of marketers at large companies said they had requested the payment be disclosed, but the media outlet did not divulge the payment or gift.
Source: Marketing VOX