What good does business do for society? Not much, according to a majority of public opinion since the last economic crisis. That has led to a loss of confidence in business and growing support for anti-business legislation. But it was a one-sided argument – of course business brings untold benefits in terms of employment, innovation and the wealth of society. We suggested to the CBI that as the voice of business they could help level the playing field and allow pro-business opinion to be heard. And the best way to level the playing field? Build one.
So working closely with the CBI we created the concept of The Great Business Debate. A digital-based national discussion, inviting contribution from tax campaigners and archbishops as well as business leaders and entrepreneurs. This called for a fully-responsive campaign website as a focus for the CBI’s social media activity (@bizdebate), video, EDM, advertising and live debate. The campaign was launched at the CBI Annual Conference with business leaders like Whitbread CEO Andy Harrison talking to the Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu.
The Great Business Debate celebrated its first birthday in September 2015. With over 160,000 page views, 86,000 users and over 8,500 followers, it’s got the public engaged and has put a spotlight on encouraging more positive attitudes towards responsible businesses. The CBI are extending the campaign to live interactive webcasts and grassroots events in factories and schools. Many agencies claim they want to get the whole country talking with their campaigns. We really have.