BUSINESS

Ad watchdog bans misleading Health Lottery TV advert

TAGs: Advertising Standards Authority, Health Lottery, Leonard Postrado

A Health Lottery TV ad has been taken off air for good after it implies that it has more winners than the National Lottery.

Ad watchdog bans misleading Health Lottery TV advertThanks to the complaint of a viewer, watchdog Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) found that the Health Lottery also breached rules regarding substantiation and comparisons with identifiable competitors.

The Guardian reported that the information being contested by the viewer was the claim of a voice over in the TV ad saying: “There’s never been a better time to play the Health Lottery … and with over £100m handed out in prize money, there are more winners too.”

But the viewer complained to the ASA that the Health Lottery’s “more winners” claim misleads the public and could be substantiated.

Health Lottery, in its defense, said the “more winners” claim in the controversial ad was a reference to their increased number of draws a week a year after the lottery firm’s launch. From a single draw, it said that they increased it two before finally deciding to have five draws a week.

The increase in draws, according to Health Lottery, resulted to more winners. Health Lottery also pointed out that since the company introduced raffle promotions, it created yet more winners.

It refuted claims that they intend to suggest that their company had more winners than the National Lottery.

Health Lottery further pointed out that the totality of what the female presenter said in the ad was: “It’s easy to play, if you do it online the Health Lottery checks it for you … and with over £100m handed out in prizes there are more winners too.”

As of February 25, 2016, the lottery firm declared that it had paid out £105,629,867 (US$140.41 million) in prize money and there had been 5,803,970 prize winners since its launch, and that this number was growing all the time.

In deciding to ban the controversial ad, ASA ruled that the “more winners” claim was vague and that, without any further context, viewers were likely to interpret a claim including the word “more” to be a comparison – in this case, between the two lotteries.

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