Two little words

Share This Page

Unless you’re playing Scrabble and use QI or ZA on a triple letter square, two-letter words usually don’t count for much.  A consumer perception study released by the FTC suggests that two common two-letter words often used in ads may not have the effect of qualifying product claims that some marketers and copywriters think they have.  Any guess what those words are?

Up to.

The report summarizes the results of a test conducted in conjunction with FTC investigations of five companies that made claims about the energy efficiency of the windows they sold and how much buyers would reduce their heating and cooling bills.  On February 22, 2012, the companies settled FTC lawsuits charging them with making unsupported representations in their advertising and marketing — including misleading “up to” claims. 

The report offers insights into how the test group interpreted “up to” claims in the ads they were shown.  The results reinforce the FTC’s view that advertisers making similar claims should be able to prove that consumers are likely to get the maximum results promised under normal circumstances.

A careful read of the study could help you avoid deception in your own promotions.




This is great news. I tend to wonder when I see those two letter words if that is actually the truth or not. Energy efficiency is important, yet marketers have twisted the market, making people question the true efficiency of their products. Hopefully now consumers will be a little less skeptical when buying an energy efficient feature or system for their home.
This is extraordinary news !Assuredly now customers will be a bit less distrustful when purchasing a vitality productive peculiarity for their home.Yet advertisers have contorted the business sector, making individuals address the genuine effectiveness of their items.

Add new comment

Comment Policy

Privacy Act Statement

It is your choice whether to submit a comment. If you do, you must create a user name, or we will not post your comment. The Federal Trade Commission Act authorizes this information collection for purposes of managing online comments. Comments and user names are part of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) public records system (PDF), and user names also are part of the FTC’s computer user records system (PDF). We may routinely use these records as described in the FTC’s Privacy Act system notices. For more information on how the FTC handles information that we collect, please read our privacy policy.