ASA Adjudication on L Rowland & Co (Retail) Ltd
L Rowland & Co (Retail) Ltd t/a
Whitehouse Industrial Estate
15 August 2012
Health and beauty
Number of complaints:
Guerilla Communications Ltd
A TV ad for slimming products showed the celebrities Kim and Khloe Kardashian lying on a bed and by a swimming pool in bikinis. A voice-over voiced by Kim Kardashian said "Do you have the body you've always dreamed of? You have the power to reinvent yourself. You can change the way you look. Create the body you deserve. No more excuses, just results." On-screen text stated "Use as part of a calorie controlled diet". Kim Kardashian then looked toward the audience and said "How hot can you be?"
The closing shot showed the product packaging and a voice-over, not voiced by Kim Kardashian, said "Quicktrim. Live your dream. See Quicktrim.eu or visit Rowlands Pharmacy to win the chance to party with Kim in London."
The complainant challenged whether the ad was misleading because it did not explain how the product aided weight loss.
Rowlands Pharmacy said the ad featured Kim and Khloe Kardashian, who were the product ambassadors, but did not make any claims about the product benefits. They said the pace of the advert, content and delivery of lines was designed to provide the viewer with sufficient time to recognise the ambassadors, product name and then the locations to purchase the product and/or win the opportunity to party with Kim Kardashian in London. They said the caption "use as part of a calorie controlled diet" informed the viewer that the product was to be taken as part of a healthy diet and that the website address was also included to enable viewers to find further information online. They said those buying in-store would receive comprehensive literature and advice about the product from staff.
Clearcast said shakes used as meal replacements had become firmly established in the market and the public consciousness and that the pack shot in the final scene had clearly shown a picture of two flavours of the Quicktrim shakes. They believed that, because the ad did not suggest the product to be anything else, the pack shot would make viewers associate the product with that category of meal replacement diet plans.
The ASA considered that the nature of the product being advertised was not immediately obvious from the opening scenes of the ad, which showed Khloe Kardashian lying by a pool with the voice-over "Do you have the body you've always dreamed of? You have the power to reinvent yourself." However, we noted that text that stated "use as part of a calorie controlled diet" was introduced in the following scenes, which showed the sisters by the side of the pool, and we considered that the pack shot that followed allowed viewers to identify that the product was a diet plan that would involve substituting formulated shakes for certain meals. Because of that, and because viewers were provided with a website address where they could access additional information, we considered that the ad had not omitted material information about how the product aided weight loss and was unlikely to mislead.
We investigated the ad under BCAP Code rule 3.2 (Misleading advertising) but did not find it in breach.
No further action necessary.