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Advertising Standards… June 20, 2009

Posted by Lauren Cooke in Media, TV & Film, Rants.
Tags: , , ,

A rant today guys! I promise a bit of a more interesting post tomorrow!

As I mentioned yesterday, Ben’s car was conking out. Not much of a technical term that one, but essentially his clutch died and costs more to replace than the car itself is worth. Great, eh?! Anyway, we popped into the Vauxhall garage this morning armed with a full page advert of offers printed in yesterday’s local Newspaper, the Leamington Courier. Keep that in mind – it was from yesterdays newspaper!

Anyway, amongst the expensive new and expensive cars were a few offers that would have meant Ben could have actually afforded a decent car. Offers like “Half Price on a Used car”, or “New Cars at Cost Price”.

Anyway, long story short, but the garage were useless. Upon arriving at the garage, the young sales rep explained that he didn’t know what any of those offers meant. After all, for example, why would they sell cars at cost price? It seemed “ridiculous” to him. I thought about explaining about stagnating markets etc etc, but thought it may not do any good! Even showing them the advert repeatedly simply didn’t work!

Next we tried to push them on what offers they actually did, and what cars were available for each of the offers. “Oh no” he said “we only have those offers to get people through the door”. How absurd, we responded – after all, I don’t think that is actually legal. Upon pressing further, he checked with his “business manager” – who agreed that the advert was only “to get people in”. Essentially, they don’t actually do any of the offers that were advertised. They have done them in the past, but for single occasional cars that sold up to two weeks ago. Considering this was yesterdays advert, this was quite impressive!

I, with my cute little marketing hat on, very concisely and very politely gave the salesman a little lecture on the Advertising Standards Rules, as well as on Ethics and Compliance. Being that this young man had already boasted about making a woman cry last week about deals that weren’t available, however, I doubt he listened to me.

Grrrrrr! Sorry, I couldn’t keep it in!


1. Caroline - June 21, 2009

I would seriously consider getting the Courier to look into this. They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it. Hmm.

2. Rachael - June 23, 2009

That is completely illegal. Is there an industry ombudsman? or maybe go to consumer affairs. You never know, you may get a car for half price!!

3. mysterycreature1 - June 24, 2009

Hey both.

I know, it is totally out of order. We did actually have the manegae rof the whole place ring up today to apologise etc etc… we are considering using it as a bargaining chip for a cheaper car. We are also going to report it to the leamington courier, as well as advertising standards agency.

Let’s hope it does something!

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