Pepsi Criticized By U.K. Ad Watchdog For Promotion Fronted By Didier Drogba
U.K. advertising watchdog Advertising Standards Authority has criticized Pepsi for the way it ran a competition after one disgruntled family was "stripped of multiple wins after entering more than 11,000 times," according to Mark Sweney of the London GUARDIAN. Pepsi ran an on-pack prize promotion, fronted by footballer Didier Drogba, offering the chance to win £500 ($797) an hour when consumers entered part of a barcode online or by text. A party complained to the ASA to say that they "did not think the promotion was run fairly" after they had won several times but only been awarded one cash prize. Pepsi would not say how many times the family won, but decided to "only pay out for the first win for each family member." In its ruling, the ASA said using multiple email addresses was "not within the spirit" of the promotion. However, Pepsi "had not provided evidence" that the complainants entries were made by any means other than individuals using multiple emails. The ASA ruled that Pepsi had run an unfair competition because it had not made "significant" conditions of the promotion "sufficiently clear" (GUARDIAN, 11/21).