With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, many people will be looking forward to sharing a romantic tipple with the apple of their eye, but marketers should be aware of the potential pitfalls of mixing alcohol and romance in their ads if they don’t want the heartbreak of a nasty post-publication hangover.
One thing leads to another
Suggesting that ingesting alcohol is likely to result in consumers getting lucky, or performing better between the sheets, is likely to be a problem. The ASA has upheld complaints about ads which implied that drunk girls are more promiscuous or that alcohol could help drinkers unleash their wild side.
What’s in a name?
Indulging in some saucy innuendo might feel irresistible if your product has a name like Stiffy’s or Bishop’s Finger, but jokes which are too saucy are a bad match. The ASA also upheld complaints about an ad for an Australian wine which invited consumers to taste the bush.
Leave something to the imagination
Sexually provocative imagery is likely to be problematic even if no further reference is made to the relationship between alcohol and sex. However, marketers should also be careful when featuring alcohol in more subtly seductive scenes.
Not all flirtatious interactions between men and women are likely to breach the Code. The ASA has rejected complaints about alcohol ads which featured a couple dancing and a romantic attachment forming, where alcohol did not appear to have played a significant part in those interactions.
If you aren’t sure whether your ad and the CAP Code are a match made in heaven, you can contact CAP’s Copy Advice team here.