1,329 complaints received by the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI) in 2016 and 102 advertisements found to be in breach of ASAI Code

2016 Annual Report shows significant majority (67%) of complaints were made under the misleading provisions of the ASAI Code. 


A total of 1,329 written complaints relating to 1,011 advertisements were received by the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI) last year, according to the organisation’s 2016 Annual Report which was released today. This represents an 8% increase on the previous year (2015).The number of complaints resolved at 1,376 represents at 16% increase on the previous year.

The ‘Telecommunications’ sector attracted the most complaints while ‘Digital Media’ gave rise to the highest number of complaints by media. The ASAI, which is the independent self-regulatory body committed, in the public interest, to promoting the highest standards of marketing communications, found that 102 advertisements were in breach of the ASAI’s Code of Standards for Advertising and Marketing Communications.

The ASAI was established in 1981 and celebrated 35 years of self-regulation in Ireland in 2016. The objective of the ASAI Code is to ensure that all commercial marketing communications are ‘legal, decent, honest and truthful’ and members of the ASAI are required to abide by the Code and not to publish an advertisement or conduct a promotion which contravenes Code rules. The ASAI Code covers commercial marketing communications and sales promotions in all media in Ireland including digital (online banners, websites and social platforms), print, outdoor, radio, TV, leaflets/brochures, and direct marketing.

The Annual Report outlines that 67% percent of the complaints made in 2016 were on the basis that an advertisement was misleading, while 12% of complaints were made on the basis that an advertisement was offensive. There were also a wide range of other issues covered by the ASAI Code that were raised by members of the public, including concerns about alcohol advertising, children, employment and business opportunities, financial services, food and non-alcoholic beverages, health and beauty claims.

The Annual Report also highlights an increase in the number of advertisers, agencies, media and promoters who sought free, confidential copy advice from the ASAI on whether a proposed marketing communication or sales promotion conformed to the Code. In total, 165 requests from advertisers, advertising agencies and media for copy advice were received in 2016 in comparison with 63 in 2015. The ASAI copy advice service serves as an authoritative opinion, given by the Executive but does not bind the ASAI Complaints Committee.

Complaints by sector are as follows, with comparative figures for 2015 and 2014:

Sector                                                  2016     2015     2014    

Telecommunications                              248       240       182

Leisure                                                       159       150       275

Food & Beverages                                    126       72         127

Household                                                 125       101       143

Health & Beauty                                       110       80         93

Motoring                                                     99         66         72

Travel / Holidays                                      78         77         90

Financial                                                     67         55         81

Alcohol                                                        27         34         57

Miscellaneous                                            123       98         94


Complaints by Media

In 2016, digital media gave rise to the largest block of complaints, with 586 complaints registered. This represents an increase on the previous year (449). Digital media has been increasing steadily year on year. In 2010, it represented 22 per cent of all complaints, compared to 46 per cent in 2016. Complaints relating to broadcast media (TV and radio combined) totalled 354, while outdoor media attracted 118 complaints.

Complaints by Media are as follows, with comparative figures for 2016 and 2014:

Media 2016 2015 2014
Digital Media 586 449 606
Broadcast 354 356 450
Outdoor 118 169 126
Brochures/Leaflets 74 45 57
Print 71 87 124
Cinema 14 5 8
Direct Marketing 10 8 21
Other 57 78 79






Broadcast 354 356 450
Radio 127 118 150
Television 227 238 300

The ASAI conducts ongoing monitoring of advertising across all media and since 2007, has examined over 27,000 advertisements, with an overall compliance rate of 98 per cent. The organisation, which is financed by the advertising industry, also offers free confidential and non-binding copy advice on the compliance of proposed advertising.

The 2016 ASAI Annual Report also outlines the fact that a new edition of the ASAI Code of Standards for Advertising and Marketing Communications was launched in 2015 and came into effect on 1 March 2016. The updated Code features new sections on E-Cigarettes and Gambling and revised sections on Food (including rules for advertisements addressed to children), Health & Beauty and Environmental claims. Throughout the year, the ASAI presented to advertisers, agencies and media to educate on the updated Code and this will continue into 2017.

Orla Twomey, CEO of the ASAI, speaking at the launch of the 2016 ASAI Annual Report, said:

“The ASAI is committed to promoting the highest standards of marketing communications in Ireland and our 2016 Annual Report echoes this statement, conveying the sheer breadth of advertisements adjudicated on by the ASAI’s independent Complaints Committee. The engagement with the ASAI and compliance with the adjudication of the independent Complaints Committee, demonstrates that advertisers in Ireland are completely on board with the ASAI in our bid to protect consumers and ensure the highest standards of advertising and marketing communications.

2016 marked 35 years of Self Regulation in Ireland with the ASAI founded in 1981. The ASAI also introduced it’s 7th Edition of the Code of Standards for Advertising and Marketing Communications in Ireland in 2016 highlighting our own commitment to ensuring ASAI is equipped to handle emerging trends and ensure that all marketing practices in Ireland are legal, decent, honest and truthful.”

 Sean O’Meara, Chairman of the ASAI, says:

“In the ever-changing world of advertising and marketing communications, all which must be seen and understood against a pressurised background of the need for instant commercial gratification and success, the roles of all Self-Regulatory organisations become fundamentally and ever more important in the protection of advertisers, consumers and society in general.

 The ASAI understands its role in working with the advertising industry to ensure that the advertising that is placed in the Irish market is prepared with a sense of responsibility to consumers and to society. The 7th Edition of our Code of Advertising Standards for Advertising and Marketing Communications has completed its first year of implementation and is proving strong, robust and effective. This is particularly gratifying given the immense amount of hard work that went into the deep consultative process, review, overhaul and publication towards the end of 2015.

 An interesting off-shoot of this is the obvious rise in the overall awareness levels of the ASAI and what we do, evidenced by the measurable increase in applications for our free pre-publication Copy Advice Service.”


The ASAI accepts complaints from any person or body who considers that a marketing communication may be in breach of the ASAI Code.

Check out www.asai for more details and to also access a copy of the 2016 ASAI Annual Report

To keep up to date on ASAI activity, follow the organisation on Twitter @ THE_ASAI


Final call for small Irish healthcare charities to enter GSK Ireland IMPACT Awards 2017

  • GSK Ireland IMPACT Awards provides €60,000 to up to ten winning healthcare community charities
  • Entry deadline of 5th May now fast approaching

The GSK Ireland IMPACT Awards, designed to recognise and reward community-based charities who contribute to the improvement of people’s health and wellbeing in Ireland is issuing a final call for entries for the 2017 awards.

There are thousands of “unsung healthcare heroes”, small charities who are at the heart of Irish communities making a huge difference on the ground who could benefit. GSK is calling on charities making an IMPACT within their communities to apply before 5pm on Friday the 5th of May 2017.

This will be the third year of the GSK Ireland IMPACT awards. The program is an expansion of the global healthcare company’s IMPACT awards programme which has been running in the UK and USA for 20 years. Up to five winning charities will receive €10,000 each in unrestricted funding through the awards, while five runner-up charities receive €2,000 each. In addition to the prize money, winning charities also receive a specially commissioned video and photography package to help them promote their work. The awards are designed to evaluate how the charities operate, as well as what they do, examining areas such as management, innovation and partnership as judging criteria.

Claire Taaffe, Communications Director for GSK, says: “Irish healthcare charities are on the ground tackling some of society’s most difficult health challenges. GSK wants to champion these charities, many of whom are at the heart of Irish community health and wellbeing, and support them in continuing their great work. Previous IMPACT winners show that it is possible to run a small charity well while making a huge impact in communities. Last year we found 10 truly inspirational charities and we are so proud to have helped them continue and expand their support. We are on the hunt for these year’s winners and hope that small healthcare charities around the country to enter and apply”. 

The GSK Ireland Impact Awards 2017 will be judged by a multidisciplinary panel of professionals which includes Maurice Pratt, Chair of Barretstown, former Tánaiste and Minister for Health Mary Harney, and Deirdre Garvey, CEO of the Wheel.

Last year, the five winning charities of the GSK Ireland IMPACT Awards were Nurture, Sensational Kids, Anam Cara, Dyslexia Association of Ireland and the Traveller Counselling Service.

The five runners-up were Amen Support Services, Cork Mental Health Foundation, Smashing Times Theatre Company, HIV Ireland and Move4Parkinson’s.

Organisations interested in applying must:

  • Be registered and located in the Republic of Ireland and be in existence for at least three years
  • Have a total annual income of between €20,000 and €1 million
  • Target community health needs in Ireland, with community defined as a geographical community or a community of interest
  • Able to point to a track record of achievement in community health issues

 The deadline for applications is 5pm Friday, 5th May 2017 and interested organisations can apply at: http://ie.gsk.com/ie/responsibility/health-for-all/gsk-ireland-impact-awards 


Follow GSK Ireland on Twitter @GSK_IE

Shake off winter and start getting ready for summer with Perfectil!

Give your skin, hair and nails some extra TLC with Perfectil’s range of scientifically proven beauty supplements

Summer season demands that we look our very best with a glowing complexion, lustrous locks and strong shiny nails but, frustratingly, the harsh winter months have taken their toll on the best of us!

Beauty experts understand that the key to adding radiance to skin is nourishing ourselves from within and Perfectil’s fantastic range of skin, hair and nails beauty supplements can help restore your inner glow in time for the holidays. These changes don’t happen overnight, so now is the time to begin the summer prep!

Developed by pharmacists and nutritionists and supported by unique clinical research to deliver nourishment at the very deepest level, the Perfectil range provides specific support to help maintain great looking skin, hair and nails all year round.

Perfectil works by delivering nourishment into the bloodstream at the very deepest dermal layer of the skin, the hair follicle and the nail bed. Formulated by an expert team to deliver “beauty from within”, Perfectil is designed to complement your daily skin and hair care routine with a range of over 20 micronutrients including vitamins B2, B3 and biotin, which contribute to the maintenance of normal skin and selenium and zinc which help protect normal hair and nails.

Of course, as well as taking a nutritional supplement such as Perfectil, there are other habits we can introduce now to ensure we’re ready for big summer events.

Top 6 Tips For Getting Summer Ready From Perfectil:

  1. Get into the habit of drinking water

As we’re (hopefully!) coming into warmer weather it’s important for your skin to be as hydrated as possible. Why not aim to drink more water over the next few weeks, slowly building up to 2 litres per day?

  1. Use an exfoliator to brush away the dead skin

Using an exfoliator or a scrub will help take away any dead skin and will uncover the fresh new cells below. This opens the way for moisturising products to penetrate more deeply into the skin, which makes them more effective. In short, a regular exfoliating routine will leave your skin looking fresh and healthy.

  1. Moisturise

Bathing and swimming can strip away the moisture from your skin so it’s vital that you moisturize after every shower or bath. This will help restore the moisture in your skin and leave it soft and supple.

  1. Don’t forget about your hair

Summer sun can dry out hair so it’s important to restore the moisture in your hair using a hair oil – this will leave your mane in great shape for all those summer parties, nights out and weddings.

  1. Look after your lips

Our lips take a lot of abuse and often we forget about them, so now is the time to give them a bit of TLC. Use a lip balm to keep them moisturised and don’t forget to buy one with added SPF!

  1. Introduce a vitamin supplement

We sometimes forget that when the sun starts to shine that we don’t need to look after our health as much. After moving from the warmth of indoors to the cool air outside this will have taken a toll on your skin, hair and nails over the long winter period. Introducing a vitamin supplement like Perfectil, will not only help contribute towards your immune system but also aid in nourishing your skin, hair and nails. Starting now will help towards fabulous skin, hair and nails all summer long.

Perfectil® Original is priced €16.69 and is available from pharmacies nationwide –

for more information visit www.perfectil.ie


The Perfectil range also consists of Perfectil Plus Skin, Perfectil Plus Hair, Perfectil Nails & Perfectil Max. As well as the New Perfectil Platinum Collagen Drinks.


The Sunday Times unveils fresh new design to respond to the changing nature of Sundays

The Sunday Times, Ireland’s leading quality Sunday newspaper, has unveiled a design refresh to underline the title’s purpose to provide readers with quality journalism, information and ideas that prepare them for the week ahead, whether in their professional or personal lives.

The creative brief was to rethink a trusted newspaper in an era when the role of Sundays has shifted from catching up to planning ahead. A streamlined design with easier navigation between the sections and a higher story count on each page makes the paper work harder for busy readers.

Frank Fitzgibbon, Editor of The Sunday Times, says:

“The Sunday Times can be relied upon to challenge, entertain, inspire and inform. We’ve reorganised the newspaper to make it easier to read. Featuring an elegant new typeface called Publico, our refreshed design aims to help readers navigate their busy lives by streamlining the sections they love and sign-posting the best of what we offer each Sunday, ensuring that we remain the go-to destination for news you can trust and use.”

Catherine Newman, Chief Marketing Officer for The Times and The Sunday Times, says:

“Sundays are now a day of action rather than relaxation and we are now making decisions for the days, weeks and months ahead. The Sunday Times is uniquely positioned to help its readers make those decisions by providing them with actionable information and ideas. That is why our readers are a uniquely engaged and loyal audience who spend over 93 minutes with the paper. Our new look reflects the evolving role of the brand in our readers’ lives.”

The Sunday Times ensures readers are well informed, delivering a well-balanced perspective on local and international stories as well as offering a range of diverse and thought provoking views and opinions from top columnists such as Kevin Myers, Justine McCarthy, Cormac Lucey and Conor Brady. Insights into the global news agenda are delivered via the wealth of content generated by over 200 journalists in London and 36 correspondents across six continents.

The latest ABC figures from July to December 2016 show that, on average, The Sunday Times sold 77,395 copies per week.


The Sunday Times

Know your times


Core Media announce Paddy Carberry and Rachael Crawley from Vodafone as winners of the ‘Young Marketers’ category of the Cannes Young Lions Competition 2017

Paddy Carberry and Rachael Crawley from Vodafone have been named as the winners of the ‘Young Marketers’ category of Cannes Young Lions Competition 2017 which is sponsored by Core Media, Ireland’s largest marketing communications group.

Paddy and Rachael, who worked as a team to create their entry for the competition, will now travel to the Cannes Lions Festival in June to represent Ireland in the global ‘Young Marketers’ contest, competing against the best young creative marketing talent from over 100 countries. They will have just 24 hours to answer a brief set by a non-profit organisation and use the opportunity to demonstrate their strategic thinking and creative approach to solving important marketing challenges.

The Cannes Lions Festival is an eight-day long international festival of creative thinking, digital innovation, education and networking. Attended by nearly 20,000 delegates from all over the world. It is the benchmark for the very best in global creativity.

This is the first year of the ‘Young Marketers’ category at the Cannes Young Lions Competition. Previously, all the competition categories were only open to agencies, but the ‘Young Marketers’ category was designed specifically to attract entries from client companies and brands that engage the services of advertising and communication companies.

Entrants, who had to be aged 30 years or under, were asked to develop a ‘big idea’ for the Sustainable Energy Authority Ireland on how they would encourage consumers to reduce energy consumption in their homes.

A host of entries were submitted to the competition from a range of client companies in Ireland and the judging panel consisted of:


  • Shane Doyle, Core Media
  • Jim Gannon, SEAI
  • Damian Devaney, Smurfit Kappa Group
  • Alan Kelly, Rothco
  • Karen Hand, Strategic Planner


The Cannes Young Lions Competition is run by the Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland (IAPI) and consists of seven separate competitions in the areas of marketing, media, social media, PR, design, film and print. The pair of winners from each of the seven competitions will represent Ireland in their respective categories in Cannes in June.

Aidan Greene, Deputy CEO of Core Media and President of IAPI, says:

The ‘Young Marketers’ prize recognises that creativity is no longer simply reserved for agencies – it’s at the heart of clients’ businesses too. International research proves that creatively-awarded campaigns are six times more efficient than non-awarded campaigns in growing market share. This process begins and ends with the client and Core Media believes that great work really does start with brave and imaginative clients.

The even better news is that standard of entry for the Young Marketers competition was extremely high, illustrating the wealth of creative potential of Ireland’s young marketers. Core Media is absolutely delighted to be in a position to to support the next generation of marketers to unleash their creative thinking.”

Anne Mulcahy, Head of Brand & Insights at Vodafone Ireland, says:

“It is a real honour for Vodafone that two of our young marketers have been selected to represent Ireland at Cannes. There is a huge level of talent in the Irish marketplace (both agency and client side) and it is truly a great opportunity for Paddy & Rachael to showcase this at a global scale.”

Paddy Carberry and Rachael Crawley, winners of the Young Marketers competition, say:

“We are delighted to be Young Lions this year and representing Vodafone at the Cannes Lions. Working on a brief which encompassed collaboration between Vodafone and the SEAI was out of the norm and allowed for us to put a new string in our bows in terms of creativity. We set out to answer the brief to connect consumers to their consciousness on energy and how broadband and building the smart home contributes to this. Being the first Young Lions to represent any Vodafone market globally is quite the honour and sure to be a great experience for us.”


For further details, please check out www.coremedia.ie


@CoremediaIRL #CannesLions



90% of Irish parents worry about the products they use on their child’s skin – according to a new Oilatum Junior survey

  • While 80% of parents read the ingredients list when selecting skincare products for their children, nearly two thirds admitted they have limited or no understanding of the function of the ingredients listed on a product.
  • Two thirds of parents said that knowing their child’s skincare product was made in Ireland would positively affect their decision to buy.


90% of Irish parents worry about the products they use on their child’s skin according to a new survey on children’s skincare conducted by Oilatum Junior, the Irish-made skincare range for dry skin.

The survey was commissioned by GSK, the makers of Oilatum Junior as part of their ‘Take Comfort in Our Science’ campaign with over 1,100 parents taking part in the online poll. The campaign is aimed at educating parents about their childrens’ dry skin conditions and the importance of science when it comes to creating the right dermatologically based product for these conditions.

The findings show that 55% of children in this survey experienced dry skin while just over half of the children in this survey suffered from eczema. The impact of these conditions can be wide-ranging, with parents reporting symptoms such as physical discomfort, not being able to take part in physical activity and interrupted sleep. Emollient creams are the most popular product for treating these conditions, with over half of those questioned saying they find emollients most effective.

The survey shows that 80% of parents read the ingredients list when selecting skincare products for their children. Worryingly, almost a quarter of parents (23%) feel they have little understanding of the science behind treating skin conditions such as eczema and almost two thirds of parents admitted they have limited or no understanding of the function of the ingredients listed on a product.

76% of parents rely on their GP for advice about their child’s skincare condition and 60% have asked their pharmacist while 25% of parents admit to turning to online sources for advice and support.

Over 30% of parents have to distract their child while applying cream and some of the tactics used include cuddles, electronics, books, food and games. After bathtime is the most popular time for moisturizing (56%) whereas 12% of parents choose to moisturize their child’s skin a number of times a day.

Almost 90% of parents purchase skincare products in a pharmacy, with two thirds saying knowing their child skincare product was made in Ireland would affect their decision to buy.

Key themes also affecting parents decision to buy are, in order of importance, the products ingredients, an endorsement from a GP or pharmacist, credibility of the producer, research led science and endorsement from a celebrity.

Developed by scientists for regular use, Oilatum Junior Cream softens and hydrates the skin, creating a protective layer to prevent future dryness and helping to stop the cycle of dry, itchy skin. Dermatologically tested and suitable for babies even from one day old, Oilatum Junior Cream can be used on dry skin and is clinically tested to significantly reduce itching for up to 8 hours, providing long-lasting relief.

The survey results formed the basis of an information session on ‘Take Comfort in our Science’, held on Tuesday April 4th in Dublin. Russell Macpherson, GSK’s Director of New Product Introduction and Product Technology, spoke about the science behind Oilatum products which are manufactured at GSK’s dermatology site in Sligo. Key facts and figures of the survey results were discussed by Oilatum Junior nurse educator Eleanor Doherty, who also discussed the importance of moisturising children’s skin and gave a demonstration on how to apply skincare products to a child. A panel discussion followed, moderated by TV presenter and mum of three, Anna Daly.

Dr Russell Macpherson, GSK’s Director of New Product Introduction and Product Technology, says:

“We really wanted to focus on the science behind Oilatum as ultimately that is what helps makes Oilatum different. Our Sligo manufacturing site makes over 3.3 million Oilatum products every year for export all around the world, and we want to play our part in helping Irish parents understand the science behind their children’s dry skin and how Oilatum Junior helps. We also wanted to highlight formulations and products, like Oilatum Cream, that are ultimately so effective in treating dry/irritated skin and eczema. Hopefully today will have helped educate parents around the science behind this so they can effectively choose the most suitable product for their child.”

Oilatum Cream contains light liquid paraffin. Always read the label / leaflet.


About GSK in Ireland:

GSK, one of the world’s leading healthcare companies, employs 1,800 people across four locations in Ireland – Dungarvan, Cork, Sligo and Dublin. GSK is committed to helping people around the world to do more, feel better and live longer. GSK is challenging the status quo of how a healthcare company can contribute to global health through improving access and innovation through both what and how we operate.

GSK in Dungarvan which produces a variety of ‘over-the-counter’ pharmacy and oral care products is the global home of Panadol:  Around 7.5 billion Panadol tablets are produced in Dungarvan each year – that’s 150 Panadol tablets a second – exporting to over 70 countries worldwide.

Our Cork site produces the active ingredients for a range of medicines for diseases such as childhood cancer, depression, diabetes, HIV, Parkinson’s disease and arthritis while our Sligo facility is dedicated to skincare producing around 30 million skin medicines and products every year including Oilatum and Physiogel exporting to over 65 countries.

Our Dublin headquarters are home to our Pharmaceuticals and Consumer Healthcare businesses. Our Pharma business is a leader in respiratory medicines and the largest provider of vaccines to the HSE in Ireland while the consumer healthcare is one of the leaders in both the pain and oral care markets owning famous brands such as Panadol, Voltarol, Sensodyne and Corsodyl.