Chickens? Dancing? A Kentucky-Fried-themed rap? Throw them all together and you’ve got yourself the most complained about ad of 2017.
Of the 30,000 complaints made to the UK’s advertising watchdog, the Advertising Standards Authority, last year, 755 of those were about KFC’s ‘The Whole Chicken’, seeing it top the chart for the second time after its hugely unpopular Zinger Crunch Salad ad received a whopping 1,671 complaints back in 2005 (and where it remained for another nine years).
However, despite concerns that it was disrespectful to chickens and distressing for vegetarians, vegans and children, the ASA ruled it was unlikely the ad would cause distress or serious widespread offence and KFC’s chicken was allowed to waltz away into the sunset (or wherever it was on its way to).
It turns out people aren’t big fans of men dancing in denim hot pants and heels either, with Moneysupermarket.com’s ‘strutters and builders’ campaign featuring in the ASA’s top 10 for a third year running.
Again, despite the 455 complaints made, the ASA didn’t think the ad was overtly sexual or possibly homophobic – like many of the complainants did – and let the ‘#epicsquad’ continue to dance their way to cheaper car insurance.
Dove’s controversial breastfeeding ads, which were criticised for using language such as ‘put them away’, received 391 complaints and were pulled by parent company Unilever before the ASA could launch an investigation.
McDonald’s also dodged interrogation and removed its TV ad featuring a boy and his mum talking about his dead father over a Filet-O-Fish, which generated 256 complaints.
Read more at Marketing Week: https://www.marketingweek.com/2018/02/01/kfcs-dancing-chicken-complained-ad-2017/