The UK’s advertising watchdog, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled against betting company Unibet in the case of a Tweet from horseracing trainer Nicky Henderson.
The Tweet, which was sent on October 27, included a link to Henderson’s Unibet blog, and ASA ruled that this communication didn’t qualify as ‘editorial content’ and that it should have been made clear that the Tweet was a sponsored marketing communication.
Unibet had argued that the Tweet didn’t breach the rules as it was not a marketing communication, pointing out that they had an arrangement with Henderson, who they described as a brand ambassador, but that the arrangement did not require him to send out Tweets on Unibet’s behalf and that the company had not editorial control over Henderson’s Twitter account.
But according to the ASA, Unibet’s argument was undermined by the terms of its contract with Henderson, which stated that the trainer would set up a Twitter account which would then be managed on his behalf by Unibet, although he would be given final approval on all Tweets.
In reaching their decision, the ASA said it had attempted to establish whether Unibet had any agreement with the trainer, and if they had any degree of control over the communication. They found that there was such an agreement, requiring Henderson to effectively promote the Unibet brand, and that Unibet did have some control over his social media communication.
As a result, the ASA concluded that the Tweet was a marketing communication, not editorial content, and under UK advertising rules, should have been marked as such. Both Unibet and Henderson were warned that they should ensure that any future marketing communications were clearly identifiable, through the use of an appropriate hashtag, such as “#ad”.
Andrus is the editor and founder of CasinoChronicle.net. He has over a decade of experience of working in the digital marketing field. Away from work he enjoys travelling, visiting as many new places as possible and experiencing life in a variety of cultures. Get in touch with him by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.