BBB National Programs Archive
NAD Reviews Advertising for Deephaven’s ‘Bravina’ Company Volunteers to Discontinue Claims, Testimonials at Issue
New York, New York – August 26, 2009 – In response to an inquiry by the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Deephaven Nutraceuticals has voluntarily agreed to discontinue certain advertising claims and testimonials for the company’s “Bravina” dietary supplement, advertised as a product for “sufferers of public speaking anxiety.” NAD found the company’s action necessary and proper; further, NAD recommended that the company discontinue marketing the product as “The Speech Pill.”
NAD is the advertising industry’s self-regulatory forum. Through NAD’s ongoing monitoring program and in conjunction with its initiative with the Council for Responsible Nutrition designed to expand NAD’s review of advertising claims for dietary supplements, NAD had requested substantiation for claims made in print and Internet advertising, including:
- “Bravina is specifically designed and manufactured for sufferers of public speaking anxiety”
- “Bravina will provide you with the control and confidence you need for public speaking”
- “Finally, a natural supplement for public speaking.”
NAD was also concerned about certain testimonials appearing on the advertiser’s website stating:
- “I took Bravina before having to speak at a charity event. Not normally a public speaker, I was looking forward to any help in calming down. And Bravina was a help indeed! I felt calm as I faced the crowd. My thoughts were clear and it was very easy for me to focus! And another upside? Absolutely no side effects. My husband let me know he couldn’t tell that I had taken Bravina at all! I plan on taking Bravina again . . . any time I need to stay calm and focus my thoughts. And I would definitely recommend Bravina! It won’t let you down.”
- “The holidays can become very stressful and we were hosting a party for over 40 family members. I took a Bravina tablet and could feel my stress level decrease. I was able to focus and help my wife with the final touches on the party, I also gave a great toast! Thank You Bravina!”
- “I had a terrible, career ruining fear of speaking in public and actually thought about quitting my job because of it. Then I tried Bravina. It has changed my life and given me the confidence to speak in any situation to any type of crowd- large or small. Bravina has honestly saved my career. THANK YOU!!!!!!!”
In addition to information on purchasing the dietary supplement, the “Bravina” Website contains an extensive set of strategies and methods for addressing public speaking anxiety and becoming a better public speaker, including the use of relaxation tactics to help deflect performance anxiety, public speaking tips and suggested speech topics for special occasions.
At the outset of NAD’s inquiry, the advertiser informed NAD that it would voluntarily discontinue the claims and testimonials at issue. Further, Deephaven represented that it would modify its future advertising to better convey the message that the calming and relaxing properties of the ingredients in the Bravina supplement may play a role in helping to decrease anxiety generally, separate and apart from the strategies and tools specifically designed to decrease anxiety related to public speaking.
In addition, Deephaven stated that it will review its current consumer testimonials to ensure that they are consistent with applicable guidelines.
The company, in its advertiser’s statement, said that “in acknowledging the NAD’s concerns with respect to some of the claims, Deephaven agrees to incorporate all NAD modifications cited in this inquiry.”