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News & Views from Alchemis

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Call us for a chat on +44 (0)20 7836 3678 or Email Jim Piper or David Newman

Is Twitter getting its Snickers in a twist?

Sorry, I just couldn’t resist coming up with a Current Bun style pun when I heard the news today that the ASA carried out its first investigation into Twitter.

Rio Ferdinand and Katie Price have attracted a couple of complaints from Twitter users regarding the fact that they were advertising Snickers with their tweets – but this wasn’t obvious until the fifth in a series of tweets sent out which contained the tag SnickersUK.

I love a good old fashioned teaser ad campaign (for this is what it is) but for anyone surprised about celebrities endorsing products in an underhand (or sometimes an obviously blatant) way, let’s remember it really is nothing new. Who can forget Anthea Turner’s wedding chocolate bar pictures that were probably the biggest PR gaffe of her career? She made herself a national figure of ridicule.

Let me just re-iterate the gist of what I have said in my previous blog. Some people have nothing to say and they are saying it too loudly with the help of the ever increasing social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook. Other people (notably celebrities) will be paid/sponsored/whatever to endorse products by any means necessary.

Their audience will ultimately decide whether these messages bring any value to their lives and generate new business for the brands in question – but on the occasions when it does backfire it is often the celebrity that sees their image tarnished far worse than the brand.

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