National Advertising Division Finds “#1 CDP” Claims for Twilio Customer Data Platform Supported, With Qualification

For Immediate Release
Contact: Abby Hills, Director of Communications, BBB National Programs

703.247.9330 / press@bbbnp.org

New York, NY – July 14, 2022 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs determined that Twilio Inc. provided a reasonable basis for claims that its customer data platform is the “#1 CDP,” provided it makes clear that the basis for such claim is 2020 market share, as measured by the International Data Corporation (IDC). Accordingly, NAD recommended that the advertiser make certain modifications to the claim as it appears in Google search results, press releases, a Twilio billboard, and on Twilio’s website. 

The claims at issue were challenged by Adobe Inc. The parties are competing providers of customer data platform (CDP) services to clients, a technology solution that allows businesses to gather customer data from disparate systems and sources - such as websites, apps, and email - and unify the data to provide a 360-degree customer profile and, thus, tailor and improve a client’s marketing and customer experience.

As support for its #1 CDP claims, Twilio relied on the 2020 IDC Report which provided a “Worldwide Customer Data Platform 2020 Share Snapshot.” NAD was persuaded by the advertiser’s argument that the 2020 IDC Report is the most recent, annual study by IDC on the entire CDP market and of companies with the top market share by revenue. NAD noted that while the CDP market may be rapidly changing with new market entrants, the 2020 IDC Report acknowledged that fact but nonetheless determined the advertiser to have the largest CDP market share in 2020 (with 10.2% of the market). 

Therefore, NAD determined Twilio’s “#1 CDP” claim to be substantiated provided the advertiser makes clear that the basis of the claim is 2020 market share as determined by IDC.

 

Google Search Results

The advertiser stated that it was willing to work with Google to modify its claims and add references to 2020 market share and the substantiating IDC Report wherever #1 CDP appears in Twilio search results. NAD recommended that the advertiser do so to modify such search results to make clear that the #1 CDP claim is for 2020 market share as determined by the 2020 IDC Report.

 

Twilio Billboard

The challenger, Adobe, Inc., took issue with a static billboard with the words “Twilio Segment” in larger type, with the claim “The #1 CDP” appearing under the claim on the billboard in smaller font. In front of the bottom right of the billboard is a digital screen that states “#1 CDP for worldwide market share (IDC 2020).”

NAD determined that the parenthetical “(IDC 2020)” as it appears on the billboard may be confusing to consumers and that it does not adequately disclose the basis of the #1 claim. Therefore, NAD recommended that the advertiser incorporate the basis for its claim – 2020 market share as determined by IDC – into the body of the digital disclosure rather than in a separate parenthetical following the main claim.

 

Twilio Website Claim

The claim “Twilio #1 Customer Data Platforms” had appeared on the advertiser’s website, with a disclosure in smaller font underneath the claim stating, “IDC report on 2020 market share rankings for Customer Data Platforms is now available.” 

NAD found that this claim was potentially confusing because the statement “IDC report on 2020 market share rankings for Customer Data Platforms is now available” does not sufficiently make clear that the advertiser’s “Twilio #1 Customer Data Platforms” claim is based on market share. Therefore, NAD recommended that the advertiser modify any future use of such claim to make clear that the #1 CDP claim is for 2020 market share as determined by the 2020 IDC Report.

Finally, during the proceeding Twilio voluntarily revised two press releases that both contained the claim “the world’s #1 Customer Data Platform (CDP)” to read “the world’s #1 Customer Data Platform (CDP) for worldwide market share (IDC 2020).” NAD recommended that the advertiser use bona fide good faith efforts to effectuate the same revisions to press releases appearing on third-party websites by contacting Business Wire to request the change.

In its advertiser statement, Twilio stated that it “intends to comply with NAD’s decision.” The advertiser further stated that it “respectfully disagrees” with NAD’s views that “the reference to ‘(IDC 2020)’ on Twilio’s billboard may be confusing as attribution for its #1 CDP claim,” but “will modify that language consistent with NAD’s guidance and space constraints.”

All BBB National Programs case decision summaries can be found in the case decision library. For the full text of NAD, NARB, and CARU decisions, subscribe to the online archive.

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