THIS WEEK’S BIG QUESTION: How should pension firms go about restoring public confidence?

Prudential is talking to PR agencies about a campaign in the wake of the mis-selling scandal

Prudential is talking to PR agencies about a campaign in the wake

of the mis-selling scandal

Neil Mainland

Mainland Public Relations

’The way to fix it must be a business solution. You cannot paper over

the problems with a new image. Restoring consumer confidence only

becomes a communications solution once you have solved the business

problem and have something positive to tell people. Anyone who thinks

they can solve this problem through communications alone is wrong.’

Henry Gewanter

Financial Dynamics

’If they started with the right question at the beginning they might

have come up with the right answer by now. Rather than junk mailing

potential victims to ask if they think they’ve been missold a pension,

they should look at the IMRO approach which seems to have resolved the

problem properly by looking directly in records and identifying who has

been mis-sold and sorting it out.’

Ian Williams

Lansons Communications

’It’s easy to overestimate the problem. Pensions sales are rising so

it’s hard to say there is a crisis. Pensions companies have got to do

two things. First, they need to sort out the review as quickly as

possible, get it finished and done. Stage two is to develop strong

products alongside strong brands which are easy and simple to

understand. They must do this very quickly beacuse if they don’t there

are those who will, such as Tesco and Sainsbury’s.’

Martin Campbell

Virgin Direct

’The issue is so enormous that simple PR spin will not be able to deal

with it. The only way to re-establish consumer confidence is for the

companies to pay compensation where it is due, then put it behind them

Confidence will return when it is earned - when the quality of products

and the way they are sold meets the new benchmarks.’

Joanne Hindle

NatWest Life

’It’s going to take two to three years before the pension industry can

properly put mistakes behind it. The best way ahead will then be to,

firstly put their house in order, and then work in partnership with the

Government to try to establish the best style of pension, with the

optimum combination of public and private.’

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