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OfficeMax Australia advert banned

OfficeMax Australia advert banned

May 13, 2016

officemaxlogoThe retailer’s advert had been “laid out like an invoice”, with a complaint being upheld by the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA).

The ASA reported on the ruling, after the retailer published an advert on 18 January this year in a direct mailing, titled “Best Offers For Office Supplies. Office Supplies Offer”. The advert was “laid out like an invoice, with the recipient company’s name, address, a named contact and a reference number in the top left-hand corner”, and also included headings titled “description”, “quantity” and “amount” above a “total payable” euro sum.

The advert also included “bank details for payment” underneath, with text stating “please make your payment within 14 days to our company Processor Euro Payment Services”. It was only in the small print that the retailer added: “This is a solicitation for the order of goods, services or both and not a bill, invoice or statement of account due. You are under no obligation to make any payments on account of this offer unless you accept this offer.

“If you choose to pay this offer the product will be available to download using the link above. Offer valid for 14 days. Should you not wish to accept this offer you do not need to notify us but simply disregard this offer”. After receiving it, one complainant “had initially believed it was an invoice”, and contacted the ASA, “challeng[ing] whether the ad was obviously identifiable as a marketing communication”.

OfficeMax Australia “did not respond to the ASA’s enquiries”, with the agency “concerned” by the “lack of response and apparent disregard” for a breach of code, reminding the company “of their responsibility to provide a response to our enquiries”. Noting that the mailing “followed a format and included features typically found on invoices”, the ASA stated that “although there was text stating that the mailing was a marketing communication, and not a statement of accounts due, it was extremely small relative to the rest of the information in the document and therefore likely to be overlooked by consumers.

“Because of the overall impression of the ad and the inclusion of specific payment details, and because the explanation that it was not a demand for payment was not displayed prominently enough, we considered that the mailing was not obviously identifiable as a marketing communication. We therefore concluded that it was misleading”. As a result, the advert “must not appear again in their current form”, with OfficeMax told to “ensure that their marketing communications were identifiable as such”.

 

 

 

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Categories : City News

Tags : Australia Marketing OfficeMax

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