This week sees Tombola Bingo the latest in a long line of bingo sites to fall foul of the Advertising Standards Association after a complainant drew their attention to the fact that the ads could be appealing to minors. After a review of the campaign in light of this complaint, it has been widely reported that the two new ads for this one of the largest sites in the UK have been deemed unbroadcastable. The ASA has as a result banned the two TV ads which were running alongside a radio campaign.
The ride of your life?
It had been suggested that the use of imagery such as a roller coaster, bright colours and smiley faces would mean that those under eighteen might find the fun animation appealing. It would seem that despite having worked with Clearcast, the ASA's advertising guidance division in the early developments of the sites advertising campaign, the inclusion of a big top, ice skating ring, and fireworks to the original fair ground look, has lead to the creation of what is perceived to be a world that would appeal to a younger audience.
The first of the two banned adverts depicted 'Tombola World'
Tombola.co.uk has since tried to defend their expensive campaign featuring the voice over by Denise Van Outen stating that they had no intention of targeting an underage audience. They have pointed out that there are many procedures in place to protect both potential underage players and the site at registration.
Life's full of ups and downs
The latest in a long line of TV campaigns for online bingo to be refused by the ASA goes to show that the creation of a good campaign for any site is no easy task. With ads being taken off air across the board for creating what are perceived to have been negative associations with women players and now the perceived influence of under 18s, there is little room to play with while promoting any site, and since Tombola did in fact work with Clearcast to create the original approved idea it's surprising that any potential problems weren't pointed out in the initial stages.