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Breaches by influencers catapult personal care sector to top-3 violator in misleading ads: ASCI

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The education sector contributes the highest number, over a fourth of misleading ads, while healthcare follows with a 15 per cent share, reports ASCI

Mumbai: Violations by direct-to-consumer (D2C) brands and influencers have pushed the personal care sector to the top 3 in misleading advertising, the ASCI said in a report on Thursday.

The education sector contributes the highest number, over a fourth of misleading ads, while healthcare follows with a 15 per cent share, it added.

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a self-regulatory body of the industry, said the personal care sector was among the top 10 in violations but has catapulted into the top 3 now.

The ASCI said there was a 272 per cent jump in the monthly average of ads from the personal care sector it scrutinises since 2019. It processed complaints against 1,126 advertisements in the personal care products sector between April 2021-December 2022, against 347 ads in the previous two years.

The personal care sector now accounts for 12 per cent of all objectionable advertisements scrutinised by the ASCI, it said.

Social media influencers were responsible for 68 per cent of the ads processed in the personal care category, out of which 92 per cent violated the ASCI Code and required modifications, the report said, adding that 77 per cent of these were not contested.

According to the council, 84 per cent of the violative ads belonged to the D2C brands, which have a large presence on social and digital platforms.

“Personal care, particularly on digital platforms, is a high engagement space for consumers, and it is important that their interests be protected,” the body’s chief executive and secretary general Manisha Kapoor said.

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