Two for Tuesday: Fake Banned Ads

Every now and then, hilariously inappropriate advertisements leak online and show the denied attempts of new edgy marketing campaigns. What most people don’t know is that many of these famous “banned” ads weren’t ever endorsed by the companies they’re supposedly showcasing. These fake banned ads, which typically include inappropriate language or sexual undertones, make their way online and deceive viewers about the logic of real banned advertisements. (For example, a Super Bowl XLVIII Soda Stream ad, featuring actress Scarlett Johansson, was legitimately banned for its content. You may think–or hope–that it involves something about how Ms. Johansson is dressed, but you’d wrong. Fox banned the ad because of a single line, which stated, “Sorry, Coke and Pepsi”).

On the other hand, fake banned ads, like the infamous Skittles newlyweds commercial, are fan made videos that usually go viral to poke fun at a brand’s campaign. The high quality of some videos leads viewers to assume that they’re legitimate ads, even if the company had no hand in producing them. This Two for Tuesday, we’ll look at two more recent examples viral fake banned ads.


Grey Poupon

This fake ad features actors inappropriately using the pronunciation of the beloved Kraft mustard, Grey Poupon. The video earned over 3.4 million views just weeks after being posted. Kraft foods company took the fan-made fake lightly (probably because of all the free publicity and rather innocent content).





Carl’s Jr 

Earlier this year, a “banned” Carl’s Jr commercial promoting their new Big Sausage Breakfast began circulating the web. It featured a scantly clad woman inappropriately eating her breakfast sandwich. Eventually, consumers discovered the ad was fake; Carl’s Jr even publicly announced that they had nothing to do with it.


So remember, not everything on the Internet is trustworthy, and keep in mind that politics and branding are huge components to the decision of what is truly fit for television and what makes an ad banned.


Cover Photo Source: Zurijeta

Austin is a Junior Executive at SJG. He is a senior at Iowa State University working on a BA in Advertising with a minor in Marketing. In his free time, Austin enjoys outdoor activities like cycling, hiking and napping in hammocks. On rainy days, Austin embodies the simple geek life of cult television shows, comic books and role-playing games.