National Advertising Division
Truth & TransparencyVoluntary self-regulation helps create an honest and fair marketplace. Companies benefit from a level playing field and consumers benefit from a more trustworthy marketplace. A 90% participation rate demonstrates the depth of industry’s commitment to self-regulation and truth and transparency.
Issues We ExamineNAD’s legal team specializes in examining advertising claims for a diverse set of goods and services like telecommunications, infant nutrition, over-the-counter medication, and dietary supplements for a wide variety of issues from product efficacy to influencer marketing and the use of consumer reviews.
Time & CostThe NAD process resolves advertising disputes efficiently and almost always faster than a court proceeding. There is no document discovery or depositions, no counterclaims, and the process requires less investment in time and cost than litigating a case.
Navigating UncertaintyNAD has a published body of case precedent and is staffed by decision makers dedicated to resolving advertising disputes, using a process that provides advertisers the right to appeal adverse decisions to the National Advertising Review Board (NARB).
NAD offers three options for submitting challenges for review: Standard Track, Complex Track, and Fast-Track SWIFT. Click on the options below for more information on each track's process, challenge eligibility requirements, timeline, and fees to determine which track is best suited to handle your needs. BBB National Programs National Partners receive a discount on filing fees.
Fast-Track SWIFTSingle-issue digital advertising cases with decisions in 20 business days. Learn More
Standard TrackOpen to a variety of case types with decisions in four to six months. Learn More
Complex TrackCases requiring complex substantiation. Time to decision is determined by the parties. Learn More
Why Use NAD for Advertising Challenges
When a competitor’s advertising harms consumer trust or threatens a company’s reputation and market share, decision makers need to answer three key questions:
Policies & Procedures
Any company, consumer, or non-governmental organization can file a challenge with NAD. We handle about 150 cases each year and our decisions represent the single largest body of advertising decisions in the United States. The NAD | NARB Policies and Procedures describe the details and parameters of NAD's challenge review process.
News & Blog
NAD Recommends Similac Discontinue “#1 Pediatrician Recommended Brands” Claim in Resolved Fast-Track SWIFT Case
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New York, NY – October 2, 2020 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs, in a Fast-Track SWIFT challenge brought by Mead Johnson & Company, recommended that Abbott Nutrition discontinue the claim “#1 Pediatrician Recommended Brands” due to a lack of a clear and understandable disclosure. The challenged claim appeared in online and social media advertising for Similac branded cow’s milk formulas, and the advertiser intended to include it on Similac product labels.
NAD Fast-Track SWIFT is an expedited process designed for single-issue digital advertising cases. This case was appropriate for the NAD Fast-Track SWIFT process because the issue was limited to whether the advertiser’s substantiation was a good fit for the challenged claim.
NAD determined that as currently presented, the disclosure “based on combined recommendations of Similac and EleCare” does not, in a clear and understandable manner, disclose that the basis for the advertiser’s “#1 Pediatrician Recommended Brands” claim is based on combining pediatrician recommendations for the various traditional infant formulas (Enfamil, Gerber Good Start, Parent’s Choice, and Similac) with pediatrician recommendations for amino acid formulas (Alfamino, EleCare, Neocate, and PurAmino).
Therefore, NAD concluded that the claim was not a good fit for the evidence presented and recommended that it be discontinued.
NAD is now accepting three types of claims for consideration in the streamlined SWIFT process:
- The prominence and sufficiency of disclosures in influencer marketing and native advertising;
- Misleading pricing and sales claims; and
- Misleading express claims that do not require review of complex evidence or substantiation.
Two additional Fast-Track SWIFT challenges were filed in August but were transferred to Standard Track. The decisions in those cases, when released, will indicate that the challenge was originally brought in Fast-Track SWIFT.
Learn more about the NAD Fast-Track SWIFT challenge process and how to file a challenge.
About BBB National Programs: BBB National Programs is where businesses turn to enhance consumer trust and consumers are heard. The non-profit organization creates a fairer playing field for businesses and a better experience for consumers through the development and delivery of effective third-party accountability and dispute resolution programs. Embracing its role as an independent organization since the restructuring of the Council of Better Business Bureaus in June 2019, BBB National Programs today oversees more than a dozen leading national industry self-regulation programs, and continues to evolve its work and grow its impact by providing business guidance and fostering best practices in arenas such as advertising, child-directed marketing, and privacy. To learn more, visit bbbprograms.org.
About the National Advertising Division: The National Advertising Division (NAD), a division of BBB National Programs, provides independent self-regulation and dispute resolution services, guiding the truthfulness of advertising across the U.S. NAD reviews national advertising in all media and its decisions set consistent standards for advertising truth and accuracy, delivering meaningful protection to consumers and leveling the playing field for business.
All About SWIFT: Resolving Straightforward Ad Disputes in a Matter of Weeks
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