Category Archives: NAD

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Recent NAD Decision Largely Rejects Puffery Defenses and Consumer Testimonials that Disparage Competition

It seems like we (and the NAD) can’t get enough of “best.” In a recent case, the National Advertising Division (NAD) ruled that the advertiser, Mahindra USA, Inc., could not claim its products were superior without reasonable evidence. Deere & Company, Inc. challenged Mahindra’s tractor advertisements as unsubstantiated superiority claims. Mahindra’s ads included “Best” claims … Continue Reading

Simply the Best, Better Than all the Rest: Superiority Claims and Substantiation

Do you have the best wireless provider? If so, best in what sense—the best contract, the best devices, the best connectivity, the best value? That was the issue NAD recently addressed when it recommended that T-Mobile discontinue its “Best Unlimited Network” claim. AT&T challenged T-Mobile’s tagline in a recent NAD case, arguing that it was … Continue Reading

“Everyone Does It” Doesn’t Fly at NAD

When a widespread industry practice comes under regulatory scrutiny, companies that end up in the crosshairs sometimes fall back on the “everyone does it” defense. This argument has an intuitive appeal in the consumer-protection context—consumers are presumably aware of practices that are common across an entire industry, the thinking goes, and they make purchasing decisions … Continue Reading

NAD Lashes Out Over Use of Stale Market Share Data for a Best-Selling Claim

I love a good mascara case. And it’s been too long. The last time NAD looked at mascara, it was monitoring challenges over whether celebrities in mascara ads were merely spokesmodels or product demonstrations and concluded the latter. (See here and here and an earlier blog I wrote on this topic.) NAD recommended clear disclosure … Continue Reading

NAD Finds Support for Cleaning Products Claims Not All Sunshine and Daisies

Whoopsy daisy. Better Life, a maker of home cleaning products, recently ran evocative comparative video ads with a product demonstration to grab consumers’ attention and gain share. It’s a common enough advertising strategy, but one that Better Life in this case should have nipped in the bud, according to NAD. The ads featured a time-lapse … Continue Reading

“UP TO” NO GOOD

A recent NAD decision provided an opportunity for NAD to once again opine on the standard for performance-related “up to” claims – this time related to energy efficiency.  As even infrequent readers of the blog are aware, this is a popular topic and one we’re prepared to talk about more often than Disney releases a … Continue Reading

Coffee Talk with Lee Peeler: Self-Regulatory Process and Key Changes to NAD’s Procedures

Lee Peeler has had a remarkable career. Currently he is President of the Advertising Self-Regulatory Council, which among other things oversees the NAD and CARU. Prior to that he was Deputy Director of the FTC’s Consumer Protection Bureau and an Associate Director of its Advertising Practices Division. And to top it all off, anyone who … Continue Reading

Soup Competitors Stir the Pot on Local Sourcing Claims at NAD

With the popularity of the eating local movement, it’s no wonder food companies want to promote when they do business with local farmers or have small batch local operations. NAD recently provided some guardrails for such claims in a case involving General Mills. Its Progresso Soups tout “Vineland, New Jersey: Home of Progresso” and “This … Continue Reading

CoffeeTalk on Native Advertising with FTC Commissioner Brill

We like drinking coffee; thoughtful conversations with friends and watching videos so we thought why not do all three. Below is the first of periodic vlogs that we hope to bring to you – FTC Commissioner Brill sharing some good coffee, good company and some thoughts on Native Advertising and whose shoes she tries to walk in when parties … Continue Reading

Not Your Mother’s Red Solo Cup

We have sometimes described finding materials that will quickly biodegrade in landfills as the Holy Grail of environmental marketing.  But who would have guessed it would come in the form of a polystyrene cup? Well, not exactly, the NAD cautioned in a recent decision.  New Win Cup Holdings marketed the Vio cup, which it claimed … Continue Reading

The FTC Awakens: Native Advertising Enforcement Statement Out Just in Time for the Holidays

It’s been a big week for premieres. And if you thought you sensed a disturbance in the Force then the Force is indeed strong with you as the FTC just released their Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements and Business Guidance on Native Advertising. A long time ago, in a conference room far, far … Continue Reading

NAD Sure Don’t Like Those Christmas Cookies Babe

Well not exactly.  They do not care for Indonesia Butter-Flavored Cookies labeled as Danish Butter Cookies.  But it gave us an opportunity to share one of our favorite country Christmas songs from George Straight with our dear readers: We blogged about this case when it came out this summer.  The NAD recommended the company discontinue … Continue Reading

Under the Influence

As Uncle Ben once said, “With great power comes great responsibility.”  But Peter Parker had to learn the hard way, and marketers and social influencers sometimes need to as well.  Well-known influencers can come from anywhere – some have big screen starts, others are video game superstars, and still others are makeup geeks.  Some even … Continue Reading

Broadening Your Self-Regulatory Options – 2 Sheriffs in Town

The Advertising Self-Regulatory Council operates several self-regulatory programs including CARU, NAD and ERSP.  Traditionally these have been thought of as distinct programs – CARU regulates marketing to children, ERSP regulates companies that market and sell their products electronically while NAD oversees most traditional national advertisers.  While this compartmentalization is largely true, there is some overlap … Continue Reading
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