Posted on the 5th May 2015

Five PR successes and fails of the General Election 2015

As we near the end of the General Election and the country prepares to vote for who will hold the keys to 10 Downing Street for the next five years, we thought we would take a look at the PR successes and fails of the political party campaigns so far.

​1. The Pink Bus

Harriet Harman hit the headlines back in February when she tried to connect with female voters by reaching out to them personally. You could say the campaign was about as subtle as a big pink bus.


Image courtesy of The Guardian

Some felt the bus was eye catching and thought provoking. However, the idea received criticism from some who felt the pink bus was patronising, sexist and reminiscent of a certain child’s doll, unsurprisingly. It was also mocked by the Prime Minister. However, Labour leader Ed Miliband stuck up for the campaign by saying that it provoked conversation. You can say that again!

The stunt, regardless of how controversial, got people talking. It made the headlines, got people’s attention and it is also likely to be remembered. For that reason, it could be considered a successful campaign.


​2. David Cameron not attending the BBC Debate

One move from David Cameron that raised eyebrows was his decision to not take part in the so called ‘Challengers Debate’ on BBC.


Although the Conservatives claimed that the PM was deliberately excluded, this prompted some to assume that David Cameron was “running scared”, whereas others saw his move as arrogant. Miliband stated that Cameron is applying for a job and yet didn’t “turn up for the job interview”.

Was this good PR or bad PR? His ‘no-show’ certainly made the news, however, depending on the outcome of the election, it could potentially be for the wrong reasons.

​3. Smells a bit fishy?

One photo call sure to draw a smile, is Nick Clegg posing with a giant fish.

It has been reported that Clegg risks losing a lot of voters in Cornwall, an area previously steadfast in Liberal Democrat support. This move, although not one of the most eye catching campaigns of the election, was a sure reminder to Cornwall that Nick Clegg still relies on their votes.

Surely it takes more than a photo to persuade voters – or does it?


Image courtesy of The Mirror

​4. Tony Blair joining in Labour campaign


Tony Blair has waded in on Labour’s General Election campaign, saying he supports Ed Miliband 100% and that that the EU vote plan would cause ‘economic chaos’. In true Boris style, the London Mayor replied to this by calling the ex-Prime Minister an “epic tosser” whilst David Cameron called Blair’s comments “deeply condescending”.

Was this a successful PR stunt? Blair’s presence on the campaign did nothing but remind some of the failures of the Labour party when they were last elected, however his comments ensured that the Labour party appeared in the evening news. We’ll let you decide.

​5. The mug

Another Labour campaign that split opinions across the nation was the red mug emblazed with the words, “Controls on immigration: I’m voting Labour 7 May”.


Some have criticised the mug for being tacky and racist whereas others have agreed with Labour’s promises to impose controls on immigration.

While being interviewed on Sky News, Labour MP Yvette Cooper notably turned the mug away from the cameras as she placed it on the desk, ensuring the controversial logo could not be seen.

Whether or not the mug was a tasteful stunt, it cannot be denied that it has provoked conversation.


The Green Party turned the Labour mug campaign around in a successful PR stunt for their own party, with the release of a mug bearing the words “Standing up for migrants.”

If you've spotted any you think we may have missed, tweet us @bcsagency!