Darrell Lea pulls 'No worries Jan' brand campaign after Sensis legal threat

Confectionary company says it will send Sensis a box of chocolates and takes cheeky swipe at the latter's social media team as its pulls latest television advertising

Darrell Lea will call a halt to its latest ‘No worries Jan’ campaign launched this week after Yellow Pages owner, Sensis, issued a cease and desist letter to the confectionery company requesting it to stop cheapening its iconic creative.

On 30 May, Sensis issued a cease and desist letter to Darrell Lea and major television networks to stop them showing the remake of its iconic 2000 Yellow Pages ‘Not Happy Jan’ ad immediately.

The remake of the 2000 ad was designed to relaunch Darrell Lea in the Australian market and debuted on TV screens this week.

In its letter, Sensis said it was flattered to see its iconic Yellow pages campaign, ‘Not Happy Jan’, referenced in the latest creative. However, it was quick to point out the material was used with consultation or approval.

“To see the Yellow Pages brand, which is iconic and trusted by many Australians, and our beloved character Jan, used by another company for commercial gain is a total shock to us and our customers,” Yellow executive general manager, James Ciuffetelli, said in a statement.

“By imitating our ad, we believe it is misleading to consumers. It’s clear on social media that a number of people believe Yellow Pages has endorsed this campaign, which is not the case.”

What’s more, Ciuffetelli said the fresh advertising campaign was cheapening its IP, and said Sensis was acting to protect its investments and goodwill.

“It is important for advertisers and agencies to protect their work, creativity and innovation,” he continued. “This advert is so loved we feel we share it with the Australian people, and we believe it is right to protect this from being cheapened to sell chocolate.”

In its response, Darrell Lea confirmed it will cancel the ads. However, it noted disappointment in the decision, as well as took a cheeky swipe at Sensis’ initial support of its activities via social media, adding it will also be sending Sensis a big box of chocolate.

“We are disappointed that today we were issued with a cease and desist letter from Sensis over our television ad,” the statement read. “Darrell Lea believes that chocolate makes things better. Seeking to communicate this message, we wanted to celebrate a classic Australian television ad and give it a modern twist.

“As an Australian company with a 92-year heritage, we wanted to give an iconic ad a new lease of life and from the comments we received, the response was extremely positive.

“We were particularly delighted when the Sensis social media team posted their support of our ad across social media channels [on Wednesday 29 May 2019].”

The ‘Not happy Jan’ ad first debuted on Australian TV back in 2000 and featured Australian actress, Deborah Kennedy. As part of its latest campaign, Darrell Lea brought back the actress to reprise her role as well as borrowed the same storyline, but replaced the final tagline to ‘no worries Jan’ after the gruff boss eats some Darrell Lea chocolate.

A second 15-second slot, dubbed ‘Makes it better’, then shows the unfortunate Jan sharing chocolate with a colleague. The latest advertising campaign was created by Akkomplice.

CMO understands Sensis is now awaiting final confirmation from the Darrell Lea team.  

The Darrell Lea business, which went into administration and closed all its stores in 2012, was purchased by the Quinn family. In 2018, private equity firm, Quadrant Private Equity, purchased a majority stake in the group, giving it a fresh cash injection. Darrell Lea is now running alongside the RiteBite Group, which has reportedly spent more than $100 million on acquisitions over the past 18 months expanding its footprint into Australia’s snacking space.  

Sensis said it still delivers the Yellow Pages print directory to more than 7 million households and businesses across Australia, and has 5 million users per month to its online version.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu

 

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

Launch marketing council Episode 5: Retailer and supplier

In our fifth and final episode, we delve into the relationship between retailer and supplier and how it drives and influences launch marketing strategies and success. To do that, we’re joined by Campbell Davies, group general manager of Associated Retailers Limited, and Kristin Viccars, marketing director A/NZ, Apex Tool Group. Also featured are Five by Five Global managing director, Matt Lawton, and CMO’s Nadia Cameron.

More Videos

Great read. I agree that it should be a perfect balance between interacting with your customers and knowing your brand. As a business, yo...

Caroline Scott

7 ways CMOs can improve their customer engagement game

Read more

Very true. Team development helps improve collaboration among the team members. I was able to improve my team's collaboration skills by t...

Quent Sinder

Why empowering others can help make you a great leader

Read more

CRM is a very good software that can help you succeed in your business. In my company, this system has allowed me to improve customer rel...

Anna Janicka

Sensis rebrands to Thryv and brings business software to Australian SMBs

Read more

AI Leasing Assistants have finally arrived for the multifamily industry. With so many to choose from it can be hard to figure out which i...

Alice Labs Pte. Ltd.

CMO's top 8 martech stories for the week - 6 May 2021

Read more

Nowadays, when everything is being done online, it is good to know that someone is trying to make an improvement. As a company, you are o...

Marcus

10 lessons Telstra has learnt through its T22 transformation

Read more

Blog Posts

Why if marketing is all you do, you’ll never be very good at it

OK, so you’re probably thinking: “Here comes another article to badger me about living in my bubble.” And also, “I bet this bubble-bashing piece will go on to explain how I can achieve better results through some heady dose of new life experiences, new routines and annoyingly different opinions on social media.”

Dane Smith

Behavioural science lead and regional consulting partner, Ogilvy

A leader’s role in rebuilding a culture of confidence

Every day, there are new predictions and studies on the future of work, the state of the economy and the unfolding global pandemic. All of which creates uncertainty and heightens the imperative of effective leadership.

Michelle Gibbings

Workplace expert, author

Confused About Your Customers?​

​I've worked in brand and marketing for more than 20 years. But there’s one area where I’ve found myself going around in circles and I must admit I'm becoming increasingly confused.

Rich Curtis

CEO, FutureBrand A/NZ

Sign in