buzz kill

Is buzz marketing illegal? That's the question asked by this article from Adage. There's a question as to whether or not advertisers should disclose that they've funded a production, as advertising.

This is probably most relevant to those types of viral pieces where it's not exactly clear to the viewer that what they're watching is an ad. As you might expect, the law is not exactly clear - so we'll have to wait for lawyers and the government to get involved. We should all be more confused then.

Here's an excerpt from the article (you'll have to go through a free registration to read the full thing at Adage):

An FTC official said while word-of-mouth isn’t something that the agency is looking at, disclosing commercial relationships is crucial to avoid violating the law. “The real question is whether consumers are being misled someway,” said Rich Cleland, an assistant director of advertising practices for the FTC.

One agency quoted in the article has actually revised their policy to ensure that pieces are appropriately credited to advertisers - and they feel that it hasn't detracted from the message in any way.

No comments:

Now your brand news diet is chockfull of tasty tales of Customer Experiences (CX). Served-fresh every morning for your daily recommended dose of marketing inspirations. Never sugar coated. May contain nuts. Archives | Look back at these past bites