King Charles III’s coronation is now just over one month away, and details of the historic event are slowly being made public. The associated festivities – including an additional bank holiday on Monday 8th May 2023 – provide marketers with the chance to add a little royal gloss to their campaigns.
To ensure that your ads get the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) seal of approval, read on for three key pieces of advice.
- Avoid featuring the Royals without their permission
Tempting as it might be to include a depiction of King Charles III or the Windsors more generally in your campaigns, advertising rules make clear that members of the Royal Family should not be shown or mentioned in marketing communications without their prior permission. More incidental or generic references such as “Congratulations, Your Majesty” might be acceptable, but in general, royal references are best avoided, unless you’ve been granted express permission.
- Coronation collectibles must abide by our general rules
Featuring the King on celebratory tea towels does not preclude marketers from following the rest of the Advertising Codes. In 2012, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) banned an ad for a “Prince William Royal Bridegroom Porcelain Doll” on the grounds the image of the doll looked nothing like the product actually being sold.
And whilst souvenirs are not, in and of themselves, likely to be considered to imply royal endorsement, care should be taken to ensure that any ads for them don’t imply a product is official memorabilia if that is not the case. Marketers may wish to consider consulting the Lord Chamberlain’s Office’s website for more specific guidance about what is and what is not permitted by the Crown.
- Only use the Royal Arms/Emblems or refer to a Royal Warrant if you have appropriate authorisation
Featuring the Royal Arms or Emblems or referring to a Royal Warrant is likely to imply official endorsement. As such, marketers are strongly advised against doing so, unless they hold relevant permission. Advertising rules state that any use of the former is prohibited without prior permission from the Lord Chamberlain’s Office, and any reference to the latter should be checked with the Royal Warrant Holders’ Association.
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