The Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code (ABAC) has released its report for the third quarter, which shows complaints have slowed, but that marketers need to ensure their social media activity meets the code.

After peaking last quarter complaints slowed in the third quarter, but do continue to be steadily received by ABAC. The quarter saw 51 complaints received about separate Instagram and Facebook accounts that did not have age restrictions in place.

ABAC placement rules require available age restriction controls are applied.

ABAC Chair Harry Jenkins AO, said: “This is a timely reminder to all alcohol marketers of the importance of ensuring steps are taken to restrict alcohol marketing on social media to adults.

“Facebook, Instagram, Youtube and Twitter all have simple tools to age restrict alcohol producer and retailer brand accounts and Facebook and Instagram also enable the age restriction of individual posts that promote an alcohol brand.

“The ABAC website continues to include links to a range of resources and ‘how to’ guides that can help companies check that age restrictions are in place and if not, explain how they can be easily activated.

“Everyone involved in alcohol marketing should audit all of their digital marketing assets, including influencer and brand partner activity to ensure that all available age restriction controls have been activated for those marketing assets. ABAC will be monitoring compliance in this area.”

The International Alliance for Responsible Drinking (IARD) have now developed influencer guiding principles that complement the ABAC Code requirements that apply to brand promotional activity by influencers.

Jenkins added: “It is important to ensure that all agencies working to promote alcohol brands are briefed by alcohol companies and their agencies on the ABAC standards and guides.

“This includes PR agencies that promote an alcohol brand through media releases, influencers and other activities, all of which must comply with ABAC standards.”

ABAC launched a free comprehensive online training course and video series in March, which it says is the easiest and most comprehensive way for alcohol marketers and their agencies and media partners to gain a strong understanding of the ABAC standards and how to apply them to proposed marketing material.

Professor Michael Lavarach, the Chief Adjudicator of the ABAC Panel has spoken to The Bloody Big Drinks Summit about the history of the scheme, the panel’s independence and adjudication process.

Head to The Bloody Big Drinks Summit website for more information and to buy your ticket.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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