ASA Marketing Brand Safety

Deodorant brand’s masturbation ad sanctioned for ‘insufficient’ age targeting

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By Hannah Bowler, Senior reporter

January 11, 2023 | 3 min read

Wild Cosmetics failed to appropriately target its ‘Dirty Talk’ pre-roll ad on YouTube, according to ad watchdog.

Wild deodorant gets ASA ad ban

Wild deodorant gets ASA ad ban

Eco-friendly deodorant brand Wild Cosmetics has been sanctioned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for an advert showing a woman masturbating that was seen by children.

The YouTube pre-roll ad for Wild’s ‘Dirty Talk’ campaign features a woman masturbating under bedcovers before being interrupted by a talking polar bear. The regulator challenged whether Wild had failed to appropriately target the campaign after a mother complained that the ad appeared before Minecraft videos.

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The ad was shown on the DanTDM channel, which primarily creates videos about Minecraft, Roblox and Pokemon. While its content is not exclusively aimed at children, the ASA argued that its content would be watched by children.

In its defense, Wild claimed that perhaps the child who saw the ad was logged into someone else’s account. The brand added that it had taken care to avoid the ad being shown to younger audiences and targeted based on interests like health and beauty.

In the ruling, the ASA acknowledged Wild had tried to target appropriately but was insufficient in its attempts.

Wild placed some blame on Google, stating that YouTube’s algorithm controls which videos it places Wild’s ads on. Meanwhile, Google’s defense pushed back the blame on Wild, stating Google Ads is a self-administered system and it is the advertiser’s responsibility to abide by the regulations. Google added that it offers tools to help advertisers target or exclude types of content they don’t want their ads to be shown next to.

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