‘Comparative advertising’ was close to the line but okay

The Schick razor company recently complained to the National Advertising Division (an ad industry regulatory body administered by the Better Business Bureau) about ads created by the Dollar Shave Club. Schick believed the ads accused name-brand razor companies of engaging in price-gouging and ripping off customers by charging extra for useless features.

One Shave Club ad showed a razor customer at a drugstore receiving a “free gift” of a kick in the groin along with his name-brand razor purchase. Another showed a customer handing over all his worldly possessions to buy razors.

But the NAD sided with the Shave Club. It said the ads didn’t “falsely disparage” Schick, because they didn’t actually suggest that Shave Club razors were as good as Schick’s, or that Schick’s extra features had no benefit whatsoever. Rather, the ads simply suggested that the added value of a name-brand razor wasn’t worth the extra cost.

And while the ads contained specific price comparisons between Shave Club razors and others, the NAD said these were accurate and not a problem.

However, the Shave Club did agree to rework its ads to remove references to its competitors’ “gimmicks” and “shenanigans.”

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