Australia’s alcohol marketers now have access to a Best Practice Guide of Digital Marketing, developed by the Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code (ABAC) to assist companies in the responsible management of their digital marketing.

Following the release of the revised ABAC in April this year, the new guide is designed to set content and placement standards for alcohol marketing in Australia by outlining the application of ABAC standards to digital marketing.

ABAC Chair Hon Tony Smith explains how the guide will assist companies to adapt their digital marketing in line with the objectives of the ABAC.

“The ABAC Code content standards have applied to digital forms of alcohol marketing since 2004 and to the placement of digital alcohol marketing since 2017. The guide highlights the broad range of digital media that the ABAC Panel has examined over that period, from Spotify and Shazam through to Instagram and YouTube and covers mechanisms from reposts of user generated content through to influencers engaged to promote a brand.

“Digital media is complex and rapidly evolving. Importantly, the guide assists industry to keep pace with these changes and understand all of the options available to them to make socially responsible choices in the management of their digital marketing.”

The ABAC Best Practice for Responsible Digital Marketing guide has been developed in two parts. Part one highlights the application of the ABAC Code standards to digital marketing, while part two provides guidance on implementing the objectives of the ABAC scheme into digital marketing practice.

“The ABAC Code requires that age restrictions are used to exclude minors from receiving alcohol ads,” added Smith. “The best practice recommendations go further and in addition to providing guidance on working with influencers, and moderation of user generated content, outline a wide range of currently available measures to further reduce the risk of ads reaching minors, including:

  • Responsible use of exclusion and inclusion programmatic targeting tools
  • Responsible ad placement on digital commercial television stations via connected TV
  • A resource on how users can access self-exclusion options to exclude alcohol ads from appearing on their viewing platforms

“We welcome the recent advancement in self-exclusion options, most recently on SBS On Demand. Providing consumers with choice over the ads they see if a positive initiative for the whole community.

“ABAC has been a leader globally in responding to the evolution in digital and emerging media with regular upgrades to its Code, Best Practice Guide and educational resources as new media and techniques emerge. ABAC is committed to reviewing this guide on a regular basis so that it remains up to date with the latest developments and options.”

The new Best Practice Guide for Responsible Digital Marketing is available online here.

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