Dr Mumbo

Media research from Fawlty Towers

Dr Mumbo was just about to write a news story about some fascinating research a media agency sent him today, until the news abruptly found its way into the Dr Mumbo section.

That’s happened rather a lot lately, come to think of it.

According to the study, Indians are more receptive to brands that any other nationality on the planet.

Interesting, he thought.

% of people who trust brands

% of people who trust brands

Then Dr Mumbo asked the media agency, Havas Media, when the research had been done.

The fieldwork for the ‘Meaningful Brands’ survey, it turned out, was conducted between January and March 2013. More than a year ago.

I’m sorry, this is not particularly current, he said. A lot has happened in India since then.

He was then emailed back with: “India fieldwork was Q2, 2013, but the results we are declaring now, so it is fresh.”

This immediately reminded Dr Mumbo of an episode of British sitcom Fawlty Towers called The Hotel Inspectors, a passage of dialogue from which goes like this…

Basil Fawlty: Mr. Hutchinson, you’ve ordered, have you?

Mr. Hutchinson: Yes, I’m going to have your Spanish omelette.

Basil Fawlty: Splendid.

Mr. Hutchinson: I assume that all the vegetables within the omelette are fresh?

Basil Fawlty: Oh, yes, yes.

Mr. Hutchinson: Including the peas?

Media research meets Fawlty Towers

“Oh, yes, it’s fresh, all right.”

Basil Fawlty: Oh, yes, they’re fresh, all right.

Mr. Hutchinson: They’re not frozen, are they?

Basil Fawlty: Well, they’re frozen, yes.

Mr. Hutchinson: Well, if they’re frozen, they’re not fresh, are they?

Basil Fawlty: Well, I assure you they were absolutely fresh when they were frozen.

The final email from Havas Media finished with the words: “Hope you will carry this.” Happy to oblige.


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