Northampton, UK - The UK furniture retailer Sofa King came under fire when an advertisement in a local newspaper – using their 9-year-old slogan – drew complaints from three readers.
From it’s early beginnings, Sofa King has taken pride in the particular way that they do business. Customers were assured that the prices they were paying were not just low - they were Sofa King low! …and the delivery wasn’t just fast – it was Sofa King fast!
But, alas, an era has ended… The recent review by the UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) stemming from the reader’s objections resulted in one inescapable conclusion – their slogan is Sofa King offensive that it should not be used.
“The ASA noted that the phrase ‘Sofa King Low’ used the advertiser’s company name – but considered that it could be interpreted as a derivative of the swear word ‘f***’, which consumer research had found to be a word so likely to offend that it should not be used in ads at all, even when it was relevant to the name of a product,” the industry watchdog group explained.
The ASA noted that complaints about the slogans had even resulted in calls to police as far back as 2004.
Sofa King management responded by saying “The conclusion of the Advertising Standards Authority is Sofa King idiotic as to be unimaginable. In fact, based on their conclusion, we think that they are Sofa King full of it, that it is running out their ears.” Okay, they didn’t really say that. …at least not publicly.
Sofa King did, however, say that the slogan ‘simply used their company name to refer to pricing and that the words had not been changed or run together or punctuation used in a way that was intended to cause offense.’
The ASA was unmoved by their claim. So, as of now, the slogan is Sofa King banned.