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5 ways your brand is forbidden from celebrating the Platinum Jubilee

With The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations fast approaching, brands all over Britain are racing to get a slice of the royal pie.

But playing into current Royal Family events in your products and marketing is a dangerous game – one which several well-known brands have fallen foul of in the past.

Print marketing experts Solopress break down the five regulations you’ll need to watch out for as a company when referencing Her Majesty’s 70-year reign…

  • Don’t mention the Royals in your marketing

In celebration of the Jubilee occasion, The Queen has approved a temporary relaxation of the usual stringent rules regarding mentioning the Royals on memorabilia. Platinum Jubilee souvenirs are now allowed to use photographs of the Royals provided they meet copyright requirements and comply with official Royal regulations.

However, strict rules remain when discussing the Royals in other scenarios such as marketing materials. Members of the Royal Family should not be shown or made reference to in marketing communications without their prior permission, which you are unlikely to receive except in special cases such as “where the event or place is of outstanding importance or a national event or there is a close Royal association” (gov.uk). Ryanair’s press ad featuring a photograph of Prince Charles with the headline “Prince’s secret revealed!” was taken down by the ASA for not seeking permission to use the photograph of Prince Charles in the campaign – despite the photos being taken at a public event.

The Advertising Standards Authority acknowledges that there may be certain cases where incidental references may be permissible, for example reference to a book about the Royals. Meanwhile, many companies have successfully utilised the Royal Family in their marketing through indirect references, such as this Warburton’s advert upon the birth of Prince George which avoided direct mentions of the Royals.

  • Don’t imply Royal endorsement – directly or indirectly

If you do make mention of the Royal Family, make sure you stray on the side of caution, as associating your brand products or event with Royal approval could lead to action being taken. Irish property developer Hagan Homes were forced to remove adverts featuring Prince Harry and Meghan Markle with the tagline “fit for part-time royalty” due to the implication of endorsement and for failing to gain permission to use photographs of the couple.

  • Rules for using Royal Arms and Emblems

The use of Royal Arms and Devices is permitted for souvenirs related to the jubilee event, providing they are in good taste, free from any form of advertisement and carry no implication of Royal Custom or Approval. These items must also be permanent in nature, i.e. made from a “semi-destructible material”, and must be “specially made for the occasion”.

Outside of these circumstances, however, the Royal Arms and Emblems are not to be used “in connection with any trade or business”, as outlined by the Trade Marks Act 1994. The Royal Family’s official guidelines state that this also includes emblems “which are so similar as to be calculated to deceive” – meaning you can’t create emblems which may be confused with the Royal Arms, the Royal Crown and other official devices. This applies regardless of context and includes satirical settings and non-marketing communications used by brands.

The sole exception to this rule is if “the permission of the Member of the Royal Family concerned has been obtained”; however, even if you become a Royal Warrant holder, a strict ruleset exists which prohibits the use of the Royal Warrant imagery on banners and adverts on buses, taxis and trains, regulates where and how often Royal Arms can appear on packaging and products and prevents holders from using the warrant in a way which connotates use by the Royal Family.

  • Make sure your products or advertising won’t misinform

Whilst the selling of souvenir and memorabilia products is not prohibited providing they adhere to the above rules, it’s important to be clear that these products are not official memorabilia. Implying that products are approved by Royals or connected to the Royal Family, even in a comedic context, is strictly prohibited.

It’s also important to remember that advertising for these products must not mislead or be viewed as inaccurate. An advert for a doll of the Duke of Cambridge promising an “authentic likeness of the handsome Prince on his wedding day” was banned by the ASA when it was found that the advert for the doll differed from the product sold, with the ASA commenting that “the face of the doll differed from that advertised in being slimmer and painted in a more vibrant, and less realistic, way.”

  • Using the terms “Platinum Jubilee”, “Royal” and “Queen Elizabeth II”

Royal Guidance has been released on using royal-related terms during the event. Although the name “Platinum Jubilee” may be used freely for events, projects and buildings relating to the occasion, approval must be applied for when referencing terms such as “Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee”, “The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee”, “Royal” or “Queen Elizabeth II” for all communications, even for small community events. Approval requests should be directed to royalnames@cabinetoffice.gov.uk in England and Northern Ireland, protocolandhonours@gov.scot in Scotland and brandingqueries@gov.wales in Wales.

Well-known British brands have already begun working the Platinum Jubilee into their product lineup in ways which adhere to the restrictions on royal titles, with Heinz recently releasing limited-edition versions of their products labelled “HM Sauce” and “Salad Queen”, cleverly avoiding the list of terms made off-bounds by the Royal Family whilst still managing to celebrate the Jubilee.

Glen Eckett, Head of Marketing at Solopress, said: “It’s an exciting time for businesses around the country as we approach this summer’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations – although strict requirements around commemorating the occasion are still in place, The Queen has temporarily eased some of the usual restrictions, opening up exciting new opportunities for business and community endeavours nationwide.”

Building a cybersecurity strategy for marketers

By Radmila Blazheska, CMO, SecurityHQ and  Eleanor Barlow, Content Manager, SecurityHQ

Marketing teams often work with sensitive data, be it customer or contact data, in your CRM, WordPress site, payment details, and much more. Chief Marketing Officers (CMO’s), Head of Marketing, and Marketing Directors are accountable for data, how it is used, stored, and shared within their marketing teams.

Since GDPR was enforced, most marketeers also hold Data Officer roles, or are very interlinked with these roles, and form the connection between data, IT, and marketing departments. Which is why it is crucial for marketing teams to know how marketing tools are used, stored, and processed, so that if a data breach were to take place, accountability is made clear and next steps are known by all parties.

Three elements that marketing teams need to be especially prepared for are brand theft, supply chain attack/third party vulnerability, and data security weaknesses.

1.      Fight Against Brand Theft

Brand theft covers situations whereby any company/user, applies your company information, such as brand name, emails, domains, and elements like that, without permission/agreement. Copyright infringement included. Large companies are often targeted by phishing campaigns and there are also lots of fake social media accounts out there, right now, using y our brand. Which is why, if there is data that has already been stolen or breached, companies need to know about this, to know exactly what has been accessed, so that an action plan can be made.

Marketing teams need to be prepared if a breach is made, as most of the communication will fall onto the marketing team anyway. In turn, marketing teams need to know how to respond to a breach, how to communicate with customers following a breach, how to communicate with the public, with government enforcement, and more. On top of large fines, some brands never recover. Timing is everything, and bad PR can crush companies.

Marketing team individuals are also often targeted as they can easily be spoofed over an email or phone call. Identities of team members can be at risk, which is why Threat & Risk Intelligenceshould be used as a tool to view, monitor, prioritise and analyse all digital elements of your organisation. This includes internet, applications, systems, cloud, and hardware, to help detect and prevent attacks. By using this service, you will be alerted on any infringement both on the open and dark web.

2.      Know How to Spot Supply Chain Attack

An element impacting marketing teams, across the globe, are third party compromises and supply chain attacks. Every time there is a data breach of a third-party provider or data aggregator, there is also a data breach of all their users and partners. In response, a zero-trust model should always be implemented when working with a third party. But this is why it is very important that the marketing tools used by the marketing teams are secured.

Most marketers work with WordPress, or similar sites. If their site is attacked, how would they know? If they do not have the training, how would they know what to look for to stop an attack in the first place? When a data breach happens, there is also the question of how to communicate this to the customer base. Companies must legally declare a breach, but not all of them declare it to their customers, and if their data is misused then they are liable to pay substantial fines.

In effect, while basic training is usually presented to every employee, in every company, there is not much education for marketers on a more granular level. There should be more cyber training and awareness for teams, and marketing should work very closely with their IT Teams, data teams, and security teams, to ensure that the brand is protected, and marketing tools are armed against attack.

3.      Data Storage & Regulations

With GDPR, there is a fine-tuned process with regards to data storage, and how data is processed. There are also different legalities with regards to data, depending on geolocation. For instance, the EU has strict regulations, and now that the UK has left the EU, there are different regulations in place depending on where the data is coming from.

In addition, there are new regulations regarding cookies, which cannot be automatically stored anymore. This effects digital marketing and advertising, and marketers need to know how to deal with this sensitive information now that laws and regulations have changed.

How Marketing Teams Can Move Forward

In every company, in any industry, marketing teams should have access to Threat & Risk Intelligence (TRI) and they should have more advanced and regular cyber awareness training.

On top of this, security teams should have in place Vulnerability Management to view and act on all vulnerabilities across all your digital platforms. As well as Endpoint Protection, to safeguard both personal and business devices as teams work remotely.

The accountability and liability of data storage should be ingrained in marketing roles. Because, sometimes, our greatest threats are ourselves. Therefore, Cyber Marketing Awareness and training is a must for all marketers, and marketing teams should work with (and alongside) IT and data teams, to make sure that all their data and marketing tools are protected against cyber threats.