News & events

The lost art of listening

Representatives from the media and agency world discuss how news brands and advertisers can unite the nation.

After years of divisiveness, the nation is ready to start coming together, according to new research commissioned by Newsworks.

Recent findings show a promising trend emerging, with eight out of ten believing that we should put differences aside and move forward.

At Mediatel’s ‘The future of brands’ event yesterday, Newsworks’ insights director Denise Turner was joined by The Mirror’s Alison Phillips and Electric Glue’s incoming CEO Pippa Glucklich who discussed the role news brands and advertisers can play in driving unity. 

To kick off the session, the panellists took a closer look at the art of listening, which Glucklich referred to as “a basic human need” that opens our eyes to the world.

Phillips added that people need to be comfortable with disagreement. She used The Mirror’s Britain Talks project as an example where people from opposing sides would come together to listen not with the aim of changing opinions but to find common ground.

Turner went on to ask whether we have stopped listening altogether. In response, Phillips compared society to a “failing relationship” because of a breakdown in communication and concluded that it needs “national therapy” to heal.

On the role advertisers can play in that healing process, Glucklich talked about the first big job that lies ahead - repairing trust in advertising. In particular, Glucklich cited the lack of authenticity of some brands that make the right noises but lack the right action.

She called on brands to really put their money where their mouth is to fuel the needs and wants of more mindful consumers. And only then, can advertising make a difference. 

On whether greater diversity would encourage us to listen better, Phillips remarked: “We need a newsroom that reflects the makeup of our readership” in order for journalism to remain relevant. 

Both agreed that although news brands and advertisers are making progress in driving change, unity and diversification, there is still a way to go.

If you would like to know more about our Come Together research, join us on 7 May at our launch event. Find out more here.


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