Without wanting to further add to the current maelstrom of press coverage about the Royal Family, we thought it worthwhile to acknowledge the latest guidance released by the ASA covering use or reference to the Royal Family in advertising. 

We also want to take the opportunity to doff our caps to the ASA for the excellent pun in the title of their article, clearly they have been taking note from our own Adlaw blog!

The current media frenzy around the Royal Family might appear to be a right royal opportunity for advertisers and marketers to ride on the coat-tails of current news stories to sell their products or services. Ear muffs? Noise-cancelling headphones, anyone?

However, the ASA is quite clear in their guidance that advertisers can only show or mention a member of the Royal Family with their prior permission... which they're not likely to give to commoners, thank you very much!

In particular, ads must not claim or imply that a product is endorsed by the Royal Family or that a product is affiliated with Royal events if it's not. Though the ASA does suggest that very general references to the Queen's birthday(s) (which one?) or expressions of birthday wishes are likely to be acceptable.  So, Happy Birthday Ma'am.

The note goes on to give further guidance around featuring Royal Arms or Emblems, and making reference to Royal Warrants - the use of the latter which would certainly mislead consumers and result in a sudden loss of one's head.

For more detail on how to stay the right side of the line, read the full ASA guidance here.