Tesco Faces Backlash for Advertising Vodka as ‘Student Essentials’ Near Glasgow University

Tesco Faces Backlash for Advertising Vodka as ‘Student Essentials’ Near Glasgow University

Tesco has faced criticism for its advertising approach after bottles of vodka were prominently displayed as “Student Essentials” at the Tesco Express on Byres Road, Glasgow, which is in close proximity to Glasgow University.

The promotion featured various types of vodka, specifically targeting undergraduates at the university, known to have a student population of over 25,000.

The ‘Student Essentials’ Vodka Selection

Among the vodka offerings labeled as ‘Student Essentials,’ shoppers could find 35cl bottles of popular brands like Smirnoff and Glens, as well as 35cl and 70cl bottles of Tesco’s own brand vodka.

The price points for these bottles ranged from £7.50 for Tesco’s own brand to £11.75 for Smirnoff, with Glen’s priced at £9.

Outrage Over ‘Irresponsible’ Marketing

Shopper Alistair McIntosh, aged 62, expressed his shock and disapproval of Tesco’s marketing tactics, describing them as “shocking” and “irresponsible.”

He found the display at the Tesco Express store in Glasgow city center to be deeply concerning, particularly due to its proximity to the University of Glasgow.

He questioned the notion of vodka being considered an essential item for students and criticized the approach as flawed.

Tesco’s Response and Removal of Signage

Following the public outcry and negative feedback, Tesco acknowledged its mistake and swiftly removed the “Student Essentials” signage.

A Tesco spokesperson stated that the placement of the vodka display with such labeling was an oversight and assured that corrective action had been taken.

A Lesson in Responsibly Targeted Marketing

This incident serves as a reminder of the importance of responsible marketing practices, especially when targeting specific demographics, such as students.

The proximity of the store to a university, where many students are of legal drinking age, adds an additional layer of sensitivity to the situation.

Companies must be mindful of the message they convey through their promotions and take into account the potential impact on their audience.

In this case, Tesco’s prompt response to address the issue demonstrates a commitment to rectify the situation and uphold responsible marketing standards.

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