In the promotion the brewer and bar owner gave drinkers the chance to win ‘solid gold’ cans that it said were worth £15,000 each, however the cans were found to be merely gold-plated and believed to be worth well below Brewdog’s valuation.
Brewdog put up three social media posts between November 2020 and February 2021, one stating that winners would receive a can one worth £15,000 and another describing the prize as a ‘solid gold, 24 carat one’.
The ASA said it had received 25 complainants, who understood that the prize was not made from “solid gold” and challenged whether the ads were misleading.
Upholding the complaints, the ASA said: “We understood the prize consisted of 24 carat gold-plated replica cans. Therefore, because the ads stated that the prize included a “solid gold” can when that was not the case, we concluded the ads were misleading.”
Brewdog has said that the cans were gold plated rather than solid gold, and that their social media posts that contained the words solid gold did so in error. It put the error down to a miscommunication between its marketing and social media teams, where an old version of the post was used for the new campaign.
In a public response the company said: “We messed up our first gold can promotion. So, we have done 2 things: 1) Offered all of the winners from the first round the cash equivalent. 2) Launched a new gold can competition with clear T&C’s & a cash equivalent included from the outset.”
This time round consumers can win one of 10 diamond-encrusted gold-plated cans or a £25,000 cash equivalent.
Brewdog co-founder and chief executive James Watt took to social media saying that he would personally cover the costs of the blunder.
Posting on Twitter he wrote: “Further to the gold can stuff, this was my mistake & because I don't want my mistake to cost our company, team or shareholders anything I am funding the cash alternative for the original 28 winners.”