Social Media Campaign Brand Strategy Politics

Sainsbury’s ends GB News advertising amid fallout over Nigel Farage


By John Glenday, Reporter

August 9, 2021 | 3 min read

Sainsbury’s has become the latest household name to distance itself from GB News after a social media campaign spearheaded by Led By Donkeys piled pressure on the supermarket chain to sever ties.

Nigel Farage

Led By Donkeys erected billboards outside Sainsbury’s London HQ

Complaints were sparked by comments made by presenter Nigel Farage, who likened the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) to a “taxi service for migrants”, provoking pushback on Twitter as customers demanded action.

Supermarket chain Sainsbury’s has responded to a social media campaign orchestrated by anti-Brexit pressure group Led By Donkeys by confirming that an advertising campaign run on the GB News channel has ended.

The full stop follows mounting pressure on the company from the social media campaign, which racked up over 2.5m views and led to protests outside its main office amid concern that it was helping to fund right-wing political views.

A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s confirmed: “We are a non-political organization. We advertise across a wide range of media outlets, including TV, to reach all of our customers.

“Our latest multi-channel TV campaign, which has now ended, included a very small number of ads appearing during the GB News program.”

Welcoming the statement, Led By Donkeys tweeted: “Just got word that @Sainsburys has pulled its advertising from GB News and Nigel Farage’s show. Amazing job everyone.”

Led By Donkeys fueled the backlash by erecting billboards outside Sainsbury’s London HQ demanding that the store explain ‘why it pays Nigel Farage’s salary by advertising on his TV show’.

This formed part of a broader strategy to sever advertising income to the station by targeting big name brands such as Kellogg’s, Compare the Market, Now, The National Lottery and Halfords.

Brands such as Grolsch and Kopparberg have already pulled their advertising pounds in the face of similar criticism.

Social Media Campaign Brand Strategy Politics

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J Sainsbury plc, trading as Sainsbury's, is the second largest chain of supermarkets in the United Kingdom, with a 16.9% share of the supermarket sector in the United...

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