The Money Advice Service has been slammed for spending too much money on brand awareness and advertising.
Last June, it ran a controversial £4m ad campaign which claimed it offers free, independent and unbiased advice which was a “breath of fresh air”. Its business plan for 2012/13 says it will spend almost half its annual £46.3m advice budget on marketing and brand awareness.
In the Treasury select sub-committee’s MAS inquiry last week, Advice UK national money advice coordinator David Hawkes said: “We have a concern over how much money is being spent on branding, on marketing and communications, including TV campaigns. The spend is about £20m compared with £30m being spent on advice. We are not confident that is right at all. That money would be much better spent on expanding front-line delivery rather than television campaigns.”
Moneysavingexpert.com founder Martin Lewis said: “Some of the people at the top seem more concerned with a narcissistic brand building exercise rather than giving one-to-one answers, which is what we need.”