Social Media influencers are being reminded to abide by advertising regulations following the recent high profile case of Marnie Simpson on Snapchat. In June, the Geordie Shore star broke advertising rules by posting two product images from firms she has business relationships with, but without identifying them as adverts.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) usually orders such posts to be updated or removed but since Snapchat automatically deletes images after 24 hours, Marnie Simpson was not required to take any action. However, with an increasing amount of time spent policing “influencer marketing”, the ASA is urging users to clearly identify advertising with the #ad label.
Guy Parker, Chief Executive of the ASA told the BBC “These might be our first Snapchat rulings, but the principle behind them is as old as the hills – ads, wherever they appear, must be obviously identifiable as ads…it’s just not fair to expect people to play the detective, to work out the status of a tweet, post or story.”
Although the ASA cannot fine offending brands or celebrities, they can report those repeatedly flouting the law to the Trading Standards for further action.