March 20, 2003 : The U.S. launches a pre-dawn missile attack on what President Bush calls &quot;selected targets of military importance&quot; in Iraq. Hours after missiles fall on Baghdad, Saddam Hussein appears on Iraqi television to denounce the attacks and rally his people. March 21, 2003 : The war in Iraq escalates. U.S. and British troops pushing toward Baghdad from the south seize Umm Qasr, an important Iraqi port city. Special Operations troops capture two airfields in the west, about 50 miles from the Iraq-Jordan border. March 22, 2003 : Army tanks push towards Baghdad while U.S. and British troops close in on Basra, where they meet Iraqi resistance. In Baghdad, Iraqi forces set fire to oil-filled trenches in an effort to shield the capital city in smoke. Officials say seven crew members are missing and feared dead in the collision of two British helicopters over the Persian Gulf. March 23, 2003 : U.S. forces make it within 100 miles of Baghdad but meet heavy resistance in Najaf and Nasiriyah. Ground fighting resumes in Umm Qasr as pockets of resistance emerge there. Al-Jazeera, the Qatar-based news network, airs footage from Iraqi sources that appears to show the bodies of four U.S. soldiers, and five Americans held as prisoners of war. The Pentagon says the report appears to be genuine. March 24, 2003 : U.S. forces advance to within 70 miles of Baghdad but are hampered by crippling sandstorms. American ground troops arrive in Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq. Officials say the two crewmen of an Apache helicopter shot down near Baghdad are missing. At least 10 American soldiers are reported killed in fighting around the southern town of Nasiriyah. April 9, 2003 : As U.S.-led forces take control of Baghdad, Iraqi security officials disappear from the capital city's streets, replaced by looters. Iraqi civilians cheer on advancing U.S. troops as they celebrate the apparent end to Saddam Hussein's oppressive 24-year-long rule. Iraqis aided by U.S. Marines topple a huge statue of Saddam in central Baghdad. Pockets of resistance are reported in parts of the Iraqi capital, and fighting continues elsewhere in the country. April 10, 2003 : One Marine dies and 20 more are wounded in battles on the streets of Baghdad. More Marines are injured in a suicide bombing at a U.S. checkpoint. Crowds fill the streets of the Iraqi capital, some looting, others cheering on U.S. troops. Facing no resistance from forces loyal to Saddam Hussein, Kurdish militia and U.S. Special Forces seize the key northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, one of the country's main oil-producing areas. Fearing that Turkish Kurds might now rise up against the government, Turkey threatens to send troops into northern Iraq. April 11, 2003 : The northern city of Mosul falls peacefully to Kurdish militia and U.S. troops after being abandoned by Iraqi forces. Like other cities in Iraq, Mosul is overtaken by a wave of looting and near anarchy. In Baghdad, U.S. Marines seek the help of local Muslim clergymen in stopping the wave of looting and arson in the Iraqi capital. American military commanders distribute a list of the 55 &quot;most wanted&quot; leaders of the fallen Iraqi regime. April 12, 2003 : Baghdad looters continue to comb through official buildings and empty Iraq's national museum of priceless antiquities. U.S. officials decline to adopt much of a security role, but insist that the presence of U.S. troops is helping to restore order despite apparent chaos in the Iraqi capital. Lt. Gen. Amer al-Saadi, Saddam Hussein's top scientific adviser, surrenders to U.S. forces. Al-Saadi insists Iraq has no weapons of mass destruction. In northern Iraq, Kurdish fighters agree to withdraw from Kirkuk after working with U.S. forces to secure the Iraqi oil center.
There are 5 sections to this presentation that correspond to the 5 highlights shown here First of all, there is a large percentage of Americans who are tuned-in and turned on the latest news on the war and terrorism They feel that the good old days are long gone and may not be returning for some time Freedom Fries or product substituting may escalate to all countries not in step with the US Some international organizations as well as some countries are falling out of favour with Americans When this is over the focus will be back to the sliding US economy and stock market
Despite the apparent victory in Iraq interest in the War remains high in April A majority of Americans still say they are very interested in the war – a decline of only 2 percentage points since march when fighting was continuing on a number of fronts
The ongoing coverage of the conflict continues to be inescapable (CNN and Fox News)– no measurable decline in Americans self assessment of how well informed they are about the events of the war Almost half of the respondents were both very interested in the war and very well informed – these “tuned-in and turned-on”s are more likely to fight the war on the home front by expressing disfavour with France, Germany and Canada through substituting products and showing less support for these countries in general
A majority of Americans(53%) feel that the war in Iraq will lead to more acts of terrorism as terrorists try to retaliate against the US Distinct differences exist across demographic groups in the perceptions about the potential for more acts of terrorism – Those that are tuned-in and turned –on, higher educated-higher income groups are more likely to expect less acts of terrorism while those with high school educations and below are more likely to expect more acts of terrorism Political party affiliation and ethnicity also divide these perceptions. Democrats, African Americans and Hispanics more likely to suspect increases in terrorist activity (60% range).
One of the more dramatic findings in this survey is the number of Americans who think it will take at least 2 years for things to go back to normal (48% to 62%)
Despite concerns for future terrorist activity the majority of Americans indicate a willingness to go about their daily lives unchanged – however a minority have modified their behaviour over these concerns. Most affected is traveling for business or pleasure – one quarter of Americans have modified their travel plans over terrorism concerns
Travel to specific destinations such as France Germany and Canada has been either postponed or canceled by a small number 3%-4% - but any changes in travel plans can have an impact on these countries economic performances.
In addition to avoiding travel (one third to almost a half avoiding planning vacations and flying commercially) Americans are also less liklely to be making large purchases But when they do purchase about half say the are more likely to buy American products or from countries who support the coalition efforts – Britain and Spain.
The position of several governments toward the Iraqi conflict continues to play a role in consumer preferences Americans are more favourable to products and companies from countries that support the coalition (Britain 60% more favourable and Spain 41% more favourable) than towards those that are against the coalition (France – 64% less favourable and Germany -52% less favourable). Support for products and companies from Canada is split among those more or less favourable and those in between.
Looking at the April results for each country – we see that French (41%) German (44%) and Canadian (48%) products or companies may suffer from an American backlash as Americans voice the disappointment in their governments by indicating they are likely to substitute products they have previously purchased from these countries Potential for substitution may have long term implications for any company whose product is seen as having a strong affiliation with those countries. Those more likely to substitute products are those who are tuned in and turned on.
While a significant proportion of Americans indicate that they are likely to substitute products from French German and Canadian companies the percentages of those who have already taken that action in considerably less Only 15% have substituted for French products and less than 10% for German and Canadian products As well, we will see later in the presentation that there is a lot of confusions as to what a French German or Canadian product actually is
Despite low percentage of Americans who actually substituted a French German or Canadian product the feelings of resentment seem strong as 63% of those who substituted a product expect to continue this for 2 years or more.
Initial survey results in March indicated that outside of the German car manufacturers (VW BMW MB) unaided TOM awareness of French and German brands, products or companies was very low – highest non-automobile manufacturer mention was Perrier at 3%. TOM awareness for Canadian products were not asked in the March wave In the April survey we find similarly low levels of awareness for Canadian brands products or companies. Those who substituted a Canadian product that they previously purchased were aware of very little - Air Canada Labatts and Canada Dry were the top mentions. Not only do they have a difficult time citing specific Canadian brands products or companies one of the top three brands mentioned Canada Dry is owned by Cadbury Schweppes a company based in the country of the top American supporter – the UK. This point highlights the difficultly in substituting specific products from these countries however brands or companies that sound Canadian may be the obvious targets.
For the April survey respondents were read a list of brands or products and then asked to indicate the country they most closely associated with the brand or product Several Canadian brands had geographical associations that were correct however some were far from that 90% correctly identified Air Canada as Canadian – 4% thought it was an American company The majority incorrectly identified Canadian Club (79%) and Canada Dry (68%) as Canadian even though they are both UK owned Half (49%) recognize Moosehead as a Canadian beer But only 30% say Molson is Canadian – 25% associate it with Germany And 37% say Labatts is French (24% recognize as Canadian) 47% say TD Waterhouse is a US company (only 13% say it is Canadian) Bombardier (makers of LearJet & Ski-doo) is recognized by only 12% as Canadian – 25% association with France While ski-do is correctly identified by 17% as Canadian – a third (31%) say it is an American company 32% say Roots is an American company – only 8% say Canadian
This brand confusion has lead a majority of Americans (58%) to be either somewhat or very concerned that US boycotts of F G and C companies may actually hurt US employees of these companies or employees of their suppliers – as well a reverse backlash in the international community may actually hurt US companies more.
Support for international institutions has been impacted by the war in Iraq The difficulties encountered by the coalition at both UN and NATO has caused many Americans to feel less supportive of these international institutions More than half of Americans (55%) felt less supportive of the UN and less than half (47%) feeling less supportive of NATO
The Canadian government's opposition to the war in Iraq has also impacted American sentiment toward economic cooperation and free trade with Canada – less than half (47%) feel supportive of this idea
When all is said and done – the economy will emerge again as the number one issue with Americans
When the US government turns its attention back to the economy they will be faced with a public tuned into concerns about the economy and the stock market Americans attitudes towards investing continues to decline – In April two thirds (65%) are confident in the security of their investments compared to almost three quarters (73%)in March – this is down from 82% in Sept 2001 (post 9/11) Overall confidence in investment security is highest among investors in the high income-high education groups – those that are tuned-in and turned on.
The eroding confidence in the security of investments appears to be leading Americans away from investment instruments The percentage of Americans with no long term financial services products has risen from 20% in March to 27% in April And declines are seen across all forms of investment options possibly indicating larger concerns about the direction in which the US economy is going
As Americans continue to show signs of concern about their investment in the stock market, stocks for French German and Canadian companies have even more to worry about as more than half (55%) of Americans indicate the fact that a company is either French German or Canadian would influence the decision about whether or no to purchase the stock. Those that are tuned-in and turned on to the war coverage are most likely to indicate that this would be a consideration when purchasing stock
Canadian and U.S. Public Opinion In the Face of Iraq Presented to PMRS – Ottawa Chapter April 24, 2003 Richard Bennett – Senior Consultant GPC Research
Introducing GPC International <ul><li>Fleishman-Hillard is GPC International’s parent company, located in St. Louis </li></ul><ul><li>GPC Research is part of GPC International </li></ul><ul><li>GPC Research is located in Ottawa and is a full service market research company </li></ul><ul><li>60 CATI station field center </li></ul><ul><li>New focus group facility </li></ul>
Research Methodology <ul><li>Research is a result of a partnership between Wirthlin Worldwide and FH/GPC </li></ul><ul><li>Trade Winds I and II National Quorum </li></ul><ul><li>1000 American adults were interviewed by phone March 21-24 (War in Iraq underway) and April 9-12, 2003 (US enters Baghdad) </li></ul><ul><li>Unique sample of respondents in each survey </li></ul><ul><li>Results are projectable to the entire U.S. population within a ±3.1% margin of error at 95% confidence level </li></ul>
Aim and objectives <ul><li>Explore American attitudes towards international products and companies since the start of the war with Iraq </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Interest in and knowledge of war/terrorism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Investment purchasing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Changes in purchasing behaviour </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Awareness of foreign brands </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Foreign product substitution </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support for International organizations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Demographics </li></ul></ul>
Key Highlights <ul><li>Tuned-in and turned-on </li></ul><ul><li>Good old days are long gone </li></ul><ul><li>“Freedom Fries” are just the beginning </li></ul><ul><li>UN, NATO, persona non grata </li></ul><ul><li>In the end, it’s still about the Economy </li></ul>Unless indicated all charts are based on total sample
Key Highlights <ul><li>Americans are tuned-in and turned-on </li></ul><ul><ul><li>American consumers (esp. higher educated-higher income) are interested and informed about the war and terrorism and are fighting it on the home front </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The good old days are long gone </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The war and terrorism has changed the way Americans think and act. They are traveling, investing and purchasing less and they say it may be a while before things are back to normal </li></ul></ul>
Key Highlights <ul><li>“ Freedom Fries” are just the beginning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The intention to substitute for French, German and Canadian products is real, the follow through has yet to happen but the resentment remains strong. Fortunately brand awareness of Canadian products is very weak </li></ul></ul><ul><li>UN, NATO, persona non grata </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Support for International institutions and countries opposed to the war in Iraq is low </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In the end, it’s still about the Economy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Investor confidence is weakening, LT financial investments are in decline and where a company is from may affect an investors decision to invest </li></ul></ul>