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Web Design in Kettering and Corby

Be Careful what you tweet…ASA Changes That Every Website Owner Should Know About

An article by Naomi Osborn, Activ Web Design Kettering & Corby

Your website is completely within your control and an essential marketing tool to showcase your products, whether it is a simple brochure or an on-line shop.  Combined with the use of targeted email and social media tools it is a powerful and cost effective mechanism to target your existing and potential customer base.

However, the increasing use of social media (Twitter, Facebook, etc) as a direct marketing tool and on-line promotion of products, including your own website, has come under closer scrutiny from the advertising authorities.  The primary driver for this is the unsupervised direct access to, and potential influence on, children and young people that these formats allow.

On the 1st of March 2011 The ASA extended the Committee of Advertising Practices (CAP) code to incorporate digital media.  This was a reaction to the increasing levels of complaints that were made to the CAP relating to content on websites and other ‘non-paid for’ online space.  The fundamental impact of this is that statements made about a product or service on a company’s own website or social media stream must comply with the same marketing and advertising standards required for all other advertising avenues.

The key message of “The Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008” is objectivity, and to ensure that your message can be substantiated.  Broadcast and non-broadcast media alike undergo considerable scrutiny to ensure that the products are not misrepresented to the consumer.  However the meteoric ascension of social media, and its increased use by large as well as small businesses to promote directly to its consumers, has until now operated through a loop hole that allowed unregulated and subjective promotion of products through avenues completely controlled and generated by the advertiser.

A key marketing strategy is traditionally to ask your customers for a testimonial.  These new advertising standards require that any communication that may be considered as marketing or promotional material, whether solicited or not, must be self regulated.  In other words, you, as the website owner must ensure that these customers’ statements do not misrepresent the products and services.

These changes have brought the issue to the forefront of trading standards considerations and will be examined if any unsubstantiated product or service performance claims are thought to be being made.

If you have a good relationship with your web designer then discuss any concerns with them about the content of your website or how you are currently promoting it.

So be careful what you tweet!

About Activ Web Design Kettering & Corby

Activ Web Design Kettering & Corby offers unique and professional websites at an affordable price. Whether you need a web brochure, an online shop or simply a short term website to rent for an event then contact me.

Naomi Osborn: 0785 230 7204

Activ Web Design Kettering & Corby.

My goal is to become your trusted web partner through great customer service.

Naomi Osborn, Activ Web Design Kettering & Corby 17/03/11

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