ASA upsets the native advertising apple cart by banning P&G YouTube promotion

The UK’s ASA has banned a Procter & Gamble video – ‘A Model Recommends’ – for not making it clear enough that it’s plugging P&G products, especially Max Factor.

If you want a really painful five minutes of viewing, it’s here.

P&G is predictably wounded, not least because there was only one complaint. And its rivals do much the same thing.

But the ASA, with whom we don’t always agree, has sent a powerful warning shot across the bows of ‘native’ video advertisers. And, indeed, broadcasters like YouTube

It says such films must make “their commercial intent clear prior to consumer engagement.”

Which sounds very much like the old “here’s a message from our sponsors.”

Cue much head-scratching in the swelling ranks of all those advertisers who want to tell ‘stories’ – without telling us why.

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