First they duke it out in the marketplace. Then the advertising starts getting fierce. Then they go to court. AT&T vs. Verizon? Nope. This time it’s Weight Watchers vs. Jenny Craig. This past week a New York court just issued a temporary restraining order against Jenny Craig forcing it to pull its current ad comparing its weight loss statistics vs. Weight Watchers’ statistics.
If Jenny Craig is smart, though, now is the time to pull out all of the stops in its advertising campaign. Unfortunately for what we’d like to believe, attack advertising does work – if grounded in reality and pursued aggressively enough. So either Jenny Craig’s advertising claims were completely made up (which should also tarnish the reputation of their advertising agency, Young and Rubicam) or there is some basis to them, but the wording in the ads stepped over some legal line. If the latter, rework the ad, rerun it, and get the most out of the existing PR.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out.