The Committee for Advertising Practice (CAP) has issued updated guidance on the use of terms and conditions and the word ‘Free’ in promotional marketing material.
The main point on the use of terms and conditions in promotional marketing is that significant terms should be prominently displayed in initial marketing material. The guidance explains how to identify terms and conditions that are likely to be significant and where it should be added in marketing materials and prize promotions. It further explains best practice in situations where an ad is limited by time and/or space.
The use of the word ‘free’ in promotional marketing often leads to confusion, as consumers usually expect such goods to be completely without costs. That may not always be the case. The advertising rules usually allow promotors to charge for uninflated postage or for the free item/product to be conditional on the purchase of other items. Where this applies the wording should be carefully considered, as this guidance explains.