The annual report from the Advertising Standards Authority and the Committees of Advertising Practice, out today, shows that the estate and letting agency sector was one of the most complained about during 2017.
“As part of compliance action in relation to estate agents, we issued clear standards to the property sector, highlighting misleading practices and instructing businesses to take immediate action to ensure their ads follow the rules” says the report.
Other sectors featuring in the ‘most complained about’ league table for 2017 were alcohol advertising, gambling, unhealthy food, gender stereotyping, misleading ‘free trial’ promotions, inaccurate broadband speeds, social media posts that were not clearly marked as promotional, and academic institutions making contested claims.
Across all sectors 2017 saw a record number of ads amended or withdrawn following ASA action; in total the authority resolved 27,138 complaints about 19,398 ads.
Online overtook TV as the most complained about medium – 10,932 complaints about 9,951 online ads.
“We want to make sure ads are responsible without consumers necessarily having to complain to us. By being more proactive, we’ve secured the amendment or withdrawal of more ads than ever before. At the same time, we’ve delivered a record amount of advice and training to help businesses get their ads right before they run. Our approach is helping make ads more responsible, which is in the best interests of consumers, businesses and wider society” says ASA chief executive Guy Parker.