Asda has won the latest round of its tit-for-tat advertising war with Tesco.
A national press ad for its 10% price guarantee showed a woman with a child holding a receipt with large text stating “We’ve saved over £15 against Tesco”.
Tesco complained to the Advertising Standards Authority, saying the ad was misleading as it implied a regular saving of £15 at Asda compared to Tesco. It also argued that Asda had compared its own promotional prices and multi-buy prices with non-promotional prices at Tesco.
But the ASA threw out Tesco’s complaint, saying the customer pictured with a receipt made it clear the £15 claim was a customer testimonial, rather than a suggestion that customers could expect to regularly save that amount themselves.
The advertising watchdog also said the products in the ad had been selected by the customer, not by Asda. The savings resulted from a comparison that included promotional activity by both supermarkets and other competitors, so the claim was not misleading.
The ASA concluded that Asda need take no further action over its ad. However, a spokesman for Tesco said the supermarket was considering appealing against the verdict.
“The ASA itself seems to be confused on this issue, first upholding our complaint and then overturning its own ruling,” the spokesman said.
“In the end the Asda advert appears to be have been upheld on the grounds that it wasn’t Asda making the misleading claim but the unsuspecting customer in their advert. We are considering whether to appeal further as this latest ruling is not clear to anyone.”