Publication - FOI/EIR release

Advertising spend during Coronavirus lockdown: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Published:
28 Jul 2020
Advertising spend during Coronavirus lockdown: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202000040706
Date received: 27 May 2020
Date responded: 7 Jul 2020
Information requested

Between the start of the Coronavirus lockdown in Scotland (23 March 2020) and the current date (27 May 2020), how much money has the Scottish Government spent on advertising? In your response, please detail:
1. the name of every company or organisation that the Scottish Government has sent money to in order to advertise with them;
2. the category of each advert paid for – namely whether the advert was used in print media, digital media, or broadcast media;
3. how much money was spent per advert;
4. what date the financial transaction for each advert was processed on.

Please also list the 10 largest recipients of Scottish Government advertising spend during this time frame.
Please provide the information in the form of an excel spreadsheet.
Upon clarification you confirmed that you would like the development and productions costs included.

Response

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested. The reasons why we don't have the information are explained next to the relevant sections below.
Initially you asked: Between the start of the Coronavirus lockdown in Scotland (23 March 2020) and the current date (27 May 2020), how much money has the Scottish Government spent on advertising?
This is outlined on Page 1 of the attached Excel spreadsheet

Question 1: the name of every company or organisation that the Scottish Government has sent money to in order to advertise with them
We do not hold this information as the Scottish Government purchases advertising space through Media Planning, Buying and Associated Services agencies who place and buy advertising on the Scottish Government's behalf.

Question 2: the category of each advert paid for – namely whether the advert was used in print media, digital media, or broadcast media
We have taken this to mean how much was spent on advertising in each category and this is provided in Page 2 of the attached Excel spreadsheet.

Question 3: how much money was spent per advert
Unfortunately the Scottish Government does not hold this information as we do not purchase adverts individually. We purchase adverts on a campaign basis which is a series of adverts running across many platforms focussing on a particular topic or message. This is provided to us by our Media Planning, Buying and Associated Services agencies.

Question 4: what date the financial transaction for each advert was processed on
As mentioned above, the Scottish Government does not purchase adverts on an individual basis.
Therefore, we do not hold the information as to what date each individual advert was paid for.
Finally you ask us to list the 10 largest recipients of Scottish Government advertising spend during this time frame
The largest recipients of our advertising spend are listed alphabetically in Page 3 of the attached spreadsheet. The Scottish Government has employed the services of only four organisations for advertising purposes during this period.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG