J2O's Instagram ad with Millie Mackintosh doing yoga banned

An Instagram video featuring Made In Chelsea's Millie Mackintosh doing yoga has been banned for not being obviously identifiable as an ad for J2O, the Britvic Soft Drinks brand.

The video, posted on Mackintosh’s Instagram account on 12 June, first showed an image of her with the caption "80s vogueing X Yoga", and then showed her doing yoga exercise with others in a gym.

The text below said:  "80s vogeuing [sic] x yoga @Houseofvoga. More of my #BlendRecommends with @drinkj2o Spritz to come! #sp"

The hashtag #sp means "sponsored post" but the Advertising Standards Authority said this was not a label that consumers would understand.

The Advertising Standards Authority received one complaint from a member of the public, who challenged whether the video was obviously able to be seen as an ad.

When contacted by the ASA, Britvic Soft Drinks said the ad was one of a series that Mackintosh posted as part of a commercial endorsement for J2O. They said it was identifiable as an ad because the video’s end frame was branded, included the product name, and showed the campaign hashtag #BlendRecommends prominently.

But the ASA said consumers need to be aware that they are viewing marketing content prior to watching it. This ad was not obviously an ad to the viewer, the regulator said, because the branded shot appeared at the end of the video. 

The ad must not appear again, the ads standards watchdog ruled.