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TNT Post ad banned following Royal Mail complaint

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By Natalie Mortimer | N/A

August 27, 2014 | 4 min read

Royal Mail challenger brand TNT Post UK has had a regional press ad and leaflet banned after the former complained to Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) over claims it operates under the same rules and regulations as Royal Mail.

The ads, created by Sutcliffe Reynolds Fitzgerald, compared the TNT Post service to Royal Mail and included claims that its service was better.

Five issues were investigated by the advertising watchdog, four of which were upheld.

Royal Mail said that the claim around TNT Post’s regulations was misleading and couldn’t be substantiated, because TNT was not required to deliver to every address in the UK on a next-day basis in the way Royal Mail was.

Royal Mail also said that the statement "If your organisation wants a change for the better ..." suggested that the service provided by TNT was better than the service provided by Royal Mail.

In response, TNT said it was “inevitable” that references would need to be made to Royal Mail in order to explain a similarity, such as the checks that both companies made as part of their recruitment process, or an operational process. It said that it believed the references were not misleading, but that they provided clarity.

The postal company added that the claim regarding a change "for the better" was substantiated by service capability and the social benefits they believed the service would bring. TNT said it did not believe the claim suggested its prices were cheaper.

However the ASA said that he wording in the advert suggested TNT was subject to the same service levels as Royal Mail in all aspects of its service, which was not the case.

The watchdog said that in regards to the claim "change for the better" TNT had not supplied substantiation for all the elements that made up the claim, and it concluded that it was misleading.

The ad was banned from appearing in its current form.

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