Spotlight: Black Friday Bargains – Keep It Legit

Oct 17th '23

If you’re about to launch a Black Friday promotion, make sure that any claims around pricing or discounts are accurate and can be substantiated. The Advertising Standards Code is clear that any claims about the price of a product or service should not mislead or deceive consumers.


Proving claims

You’ll need to be able to support your price claim with sound, relevant, clear and robust evidence at the time it is made. See Rule 2 (b) of the Advertising Standards Code.



While obvious exaggeration or deliberate hyperbole that are unlikely to mislead may be OK, when it comes to pricing this explanation will not excuse incorrect pricing.


Absolute or direct claims need full substantiation

These are claims such as “We Are The Cheapest” or “Best Price”.  Absolute claims make a specific, verifiable claim about your product and you must have evidence that supports that claim.


Implied or indirect claims need reasonable substantiation

These are claims such as “Cheaper Than Buying At X”. In this case, you need to be able to show the reasonable basis on which your claim is made.


Quick Tips:

  • Pricing should be clear
  • Don’t exaggerate discounts
  • Substantiate your claims
  • Be transparent about product availability
  • Don’t use fine print for important information


In 2022 the Complaints Board upheld two complaints about two SMS and mobile app ads by Domino’s Pizza where “50% off Entire Menu” was used with a number of exclusions. The first advertisement was an SMS text message sent by Domino’s that stated: “This weekend only! 50% Off our entire menu via Domino’s App”. The second was a Domino’s Mobile App Pop-Up message which stated: “This weekend only – 50% off our entire menu* Excl. Extra Value, Value Range & Mini Pizzas. 50% Off Menu *excludes Value Extra Value & Minis”.


The Complaints Board agreed with the complainants that the wording “entire menu” in the advertisements was misleading given the number of exclusions to the offer.


Remember if you can’t prove it, don’t say it.


Have a question?  To support responsible advertising, the New Zealand Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) runs the AdHelp Information Service, a user-pays service for advertisers and agencies for questions regarding advertising compliance.


They also have Quick Guide resources available. Check out the Can’t Prove It? Don’t Say It Quick Guide for top tips before releasing an advertisement.


Source: ASA


About the New Zealand ASA

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is an organisation that investigates breaches of advertising standards in New Zealand. The ASA provides a free complaints process for consumers about the content and placement of advertisements. In assessing complaints, the ASA apply the ASA Advertising Codes.


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