Overview: Bath & Bodyworks, LLC brought certain claims made by Goose Creek LLC, a manufacturer of candles before the NAD. How might consumer survey research have supported candle claims, before marketing dollars go up in smoke?
Bath, Body & Home candles are marketed as candles that avoid harmful chemicals, are stronger and longer lasting than in store brands, are Made or poured in the USA, are endorsed by professional candle vlogger, @TheCandleChannel, and that include various video testimonials on their website. Bath & Body Works, LLC challenged a number of claims made by the Goose Creek LLC. The tagline, Bath, Body & Home was challenged, their representation of their relationship with actors in their commercials, that the candles are “Made in the USA”, influencer marketing practices, the ingredients of the candles, and the use of incentivized user reviews.
Something Smells Off
The NAD found that certain claims be discontinued, other claims modified, and disclosures added to associations with influencers and how reviews were obtained.
- Discontinue certain claims regarding the ingredients found in competitor’s products.
- Discontinue the challenged claims that Goose Creek candles have longer-lasting and stronger fragrances than its competitors.
- Modify its “Made in USA” claims.
- Modify disclosures used in connection with advertising featuring actors portraying consumers.
- Require the @TheCandleChannel vlogger to disclose material connections in certain videos.
- Modify consumer posts to disclose incentivized reviews.
How might all of these claims be properly substantiated, prior to marketing this line of candles?
Advertising Claim Substantiation that withstands the closest scrutiny, like the NAD or the TTAB, can include a number of consumer surveys to provide measurements that correspond to what the average consumer of a product believes about a message. These surveys may be conducted before the marketing of the product or after to see if the claims meet the consumer understanding, in order to avoid a challenge. For example, where scents last longer, a sensory survey may be designed against leading store brands, and where Made in the USA claims are made and how incentivized consumer reviews are portrayed could be measured in a survey to measure consumer understanding.
Businesses that fail to substantiate claims and face challenges stand to lose much more than marketing dollars, they stand to lose value in the eyes of their consumer base. If you are launching a new product or business that requires claim substantiation, contact MMR Strategy Group.
If you are interested in reading more blogs like, Up a *Goose* Creek: NAD Recommends Goose Creek Modify or Discontinue Certain Claims, click here.