In the seven months since March 2011 when the Advertising Standards Authority gained a remit to oversee digital advertising and marketing (in addition to the original print media remit), a huge number of complaints - some
5531 - have been lodged with the body. Overall, the ASA received 18369 complaints covering all forms of advertising that it covers - up 30 per cent over the same period in 2010. As a result, the ASA has had to increase staff numbers by ten per cent.
Those firms that find themselves on the wrong side of the ASA and its adjudications may find that they have their paid for advertising removed, receive adverse publicity, face a denial of advertising space and may even end up before the Courts for breaches of the Consumer Protection Regulations.
For the record, the ASA now oversees non-paid for online marketing campaigns that the advertiser controls including those that use Facebook and the company's own website.