WASHINGTON — The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus told Wal-Mart Stores yesterday that it should stop running TV ads claiming customers can save $700 a year by shopping its stores.
The admonition came after a complaint by San Antonio-based H.E. Butt Grocery Co. Wal-Mart said the savings were based on a 2007 study by Global Insight Inc. and that it was no longer running the ads, but the NAD said the message was misleading.
The NAD, which acts as a self-policing group for the advertising industry, said it found that another claim by Wal-Mart that its prices were "unbeatable" should include more conspicuous price comparisons, although the specific complaint about those ads was found to be without merit.
“We disagree with NAD’s determination that our $700 grocery savings claim was not adequately substantiated,” a Wal-Mart spokeswoman told SN yesterday. “Although we are not currently running this particular spot, we firmly believe that this claim is well-supported by the Global Insight study, and that the advertising clearly communicated the claim and the basis for the claim.”
She said the company was “pleased” that the “Unbeatable Prices” claim was substantiated.
H-E-B could not be reached for comment.
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