clearcast pre-production and post-production clearance

12 mins read

The Role of Clearcast in UK Advertising

Clearcast holds a pivotal role in the UK advertising landscape as the authoritative body responsible for the pre-production and post-production clearance of TV ads. Established in 2008, it operates as a non-governmental organization, ensuring that advertisements adhere to the highest standards of honesty, transparency, and decency before they reach the viewing public.

Impact on TV Ad Production

The clearance process administered by Clearcast is integral to the production of TV ads. It serves as a crucial checkpoint, verifying that all content is in compliance with the UK Code of Broadcast Advertising. This process not only safeguards the audience but also protects agencies and brands from potential legal and ethical pitfalls.

Importance for Marketing Agencies

For marketing agencies, navigating the pre-production and post-production clearance is essential. It ensures that their creative work aligns with regulatory requirements, thus avoiding costly revisions or rejections. Clearcast’s clearance is a stamp of approval that signifies an ad is ready for broadcast, giving agencies confidence in their campaign launches.

Ensuring Compliance with Standards

Clearcast’s rigorous clearance process is designed to ensure that all TV ads meet the necessary advertising standards. By meticulously vetting each ad against the BCAP and CAP Codes, as well as the Ofcom Broadcasting Code, Clearcast upholds the integrity of UK advertising. This thorough approach to compliance is why we at Hightower Video prioritize Clearcast’s guidelines in our production processes, ensuring that your ads are not only creative but also fully compliant.

Understanding the Clearcast Clearance Process

Navigating the Clearcast clearance process is a critical step for ensuring your TV advertisements are broadcast-ready and compliant with UK standards. At Hightower Video, we guide you through each phase, ensuring your ads meet the stringent criteria set forth by Clearcast.

Steps to Obtain Clearcast Clearance

To begin, submit your script to Clearcast. This initial step does not require a storyboard but sets the foundation for the clearance process. Clearcast will provide initial comments and may request substantiation for any claims made in the ad. Following this, a second reading takes place, leading to final approval. Throughout this journey, we at Hightower Video stand by your side, offering our expertise to streamline the process.

Evaluating Ads for Honesty and Decency

Clearcast meticulously evaluates ads to ensure they uphold values of honesty, transparency, and decency. This vetting process is designed to protect the public and maintain the integrity of British advertising. As your partner, we ensure that your ad’s content aligns with these principles from the outset.

Role in Public Health and Compliance

Clearcast’s role extends to safeguarding public health and ensuring adherence to the UK Code of Broadcast Advertising. This includes reviewing content for anything that could impact viewers, such as ensuring no material could potentially trigger photosensitive epilepsy.

Contribution of Daily Review Meetings

Daily review meetings are a cornerstone of the compliance and clearance process. During these sessions, Clearcast examines ads against the BCAP and CAP Codes, as well as the Ofcom Broadcasting Code, providing feedback and imposing any necessary restrictions. Our team at Hightower Video is adept at navigating these meetings, ensuring your ad progresses smoothly towards clearance.

Streamlining the Clearance Process with Hightower Video

At Hightower Video, we understand that navigating the Clearcast clearance process can be complex. That’s why we’ve honed our services to make the journey as smooth as possible for you. Our team specializes in managing the intricacies of pre-production and post-production clearance, ensuring your advertisements are not only compliant but also poised for success.

Expert Navigation of Clearcast Regulations

Our expertise in Clearcast’s regulations is comprehensive. We stay abreast of the latest updates to the BCAP and CAP Codes, and our familiarity with the Ofcom Broadcasting Code means we can anticipate and address potential compliance issues before they arise. This proactive approach saves you time and resources.

Assisting with Substantiation of Advert Claims

When it comes to substantiating your advert claims, we provide meticulous support. We help you gather the necessary evidence, ensuring that every claim in your advertisement is backed by solid proof, meeting Clearcast’s stringent requirements for honesty and transparency.

Leveraging Experience for Your Benefit

Our extensive experience with Clearcast translates into tangible benefits for marketing agencies. We understand the importance of every detail in the clearance process, from script approval to the final ‘clocked’ ad. By partnering with us, you leverage our knowledge to facilitate a seamless clearance process, allowing you to focus on what you do bestcreating impactful advertising content.

Navigating Clearcast’s Ownership and Governance

Understanding the ownership and governance of Clearcast is essential for marketing agencies as it directly influences the clearance procedures for TV advertisements. As a collective owned by major broadcasters, Clearcast operates with a unique perspective on the advertising landscape.

Clearcast’s Collective Ownership

Clearcast is collectively owned by ITV, Channel 4, Sky, and Warner Media. This ownership structure ensures that the clearance authority is well-versed in broadcaster needs and expectations. As your partner, we at Hightower Video help you navigate these ownership dynamics to streamline your ad clearance process.

Broadcaster Influence on Operations

The involvement of these broadcasters in Clearcast’s operations brings a depth of industry knowledge that shapes the clearance procedures. Their collective contributions ensure that Clearcast remains at the forefront of advertising standards, a benefit we extend to you by ensuring your ads are crafted to meet these evolving standards.

Co-Regulation in UK Broadcast Advertising

Co-regulation is a key aspect of the UK’s broadcast advertising framework. Clearcast works alongside the ASA, under the governance of the BCAP and CAP codes, to pre-approve ads before they air. This separation of pre- and post-airing regulation underscores the importance of getting it right the first timea responsibility we take seriously in preparing your submissions.

Guiding Clearcast Through Leadership

Leadership is pivotal in steering any organization, and Clearcast is no exception. The effectiveness and reliability of Clearcast’s ad clearance are shaped significantly by its leaders, who ensure that the authority remains a trusted entity in the UK advertising industry.

Steering the Helm: Clearcast’s Leaders

At the helm of Clearcast, Chairman Mark White and Managing Director Samantha Smith play crucial roles. White oversees the strategic direction, while Smith manages the day-to-day operations, ensuring that Clearcast’s services are responsive to the evolving needs of advertisers and broadcasters alike.

Evolution Under Leadership

Since April 2020, under the guidance of White and Smith, Clearcast has seen strategic enhancements in its operations. These changes are designed to refine the clearance process, making it more efficient and user-friendly for agencies like yours. Our team at Hightower Video stays informed of these developments, ensuring that we provide you with the most current and effective guidance.

Ensuring Authority Effectiveness

The leadership at Clearcast is committed to upholding the highest standards of advertising clearance. They ensure that all ads meet the requirements of the BCAP and CAP Codes, as well as the Ofcom Broadcasting Code. This commitment to excellence is mirrored in our services at Hightower Video, where we prioritize the effectiveness and reliability of your ad clearance process.

Comprehensive Services Offered by Clearcast

Clearcast’s suite of services is designed to streamline the ad clearance process for TV and VoD advertisements, ensuring that your content is ready for viewers while adhering to the highest standards of compliance.

Pre-Clearance Services for TV and VoD Ads

Clearcast provides a thorough pre-clearance service that includes:

  • Pre-clearance for TV ads: Ensuring that your advertisements comply with the UK Code of Broadcast Advertising before they go on air.
  • VoD pre-clearance: Although not currently required by the ASA, Clearcast offers pre-clearance for Video on Demand services, anticipating future regulatory changes.

Clock Number Creation and Submission Assistance

A crucial part of the post-production process is obtaining a clock number for your ad, which serves as a unique identifier. Clearcast assists with:

  • Creation of the clock number.
  • Submission of the clocked ad, ensuring it is ready for broadcast and trackable.

The Benefits of Clearcast Plus

Clearcast Plus is an enhanced service package that includes:

  • Copy Development: Expert advice on creating compliant ad content.
  • TV Admin: Assistance with the administrative aspects of ad clearance.
  • Editing: Professional editing services to ensure your ad meets technical standards.

Fast Track and Edit-to-Clear Services

For those in need of expedited clearance, Clearcast offers:

  • Fast track clearance: A quicker turnaround for urgent ad campaigns.
  • Edit-to-clear: Guidance on making necessary edits to ensure your ad passes clearance.

At Hightower Video, we work closely with Clearcast to utilize these services effectively, ensuring that your advertisements not only meet compliance standards but also capture the audience’s attention.

Leveraging Clearcast’s Digital Tools for Campaign Management

In the dynamic world of TV advertising, having robust tools at your disposal is key to managing campaigns effectively. Clearcast offers a suite of digital resources designed to streamline the clearance process and enhance campaign management.

Navigating the Clearance Process with CopyCentral

CopyCentral is Clearcast’s online system that facilitates the entire clearance process. It allows you to:

  • Submit scripts and supporting documents.
  • Track the status of your ad’s clearance.
  • Communicate directly with Clearcast’s team for feedback and revisions.

As your partner, we at Hightower Video guide you through using CopyCentral, ensuring your submissions are complete and compliant.

Utilizing The Library for Resourceful Insights

The Library is a comprehensive database of previously cleared ads. It serves as a valuable resource for marketing agencies by providing:

  • Examples of compliant ads.
  • Precedents for claims and creative approaches.
  • Insight into Clearcast’s decision-making process.

We help you leverage The Library to inform your ad development, ensuring it aligns with established standards.

Streamlining Campaign Management with CARIA

CARIA is an essential tool for campaign management, enabling you to:

  • Plan and book advertising spots.
  • Coordinate campaign logistics across multiple channels.
  • Integrate with other industry systems for seamless operations.

Our team assists you in harnessing CARIA’s capabilities to optimize your ad campaign’s reach and impact.

Enhancing Ad Analysis with Attribution

Clearcast’s Attribution system is designed to analyze the performance of your ads. It provides:

  • Detailed reports on ad reach and viewer engagement.
  • Insights into the effectiveness of different ad elements.
  • Data to inform future campaign strategies.

At Hightower Video, we help you interpret Attribution’s data to refine your advertising approach and maximize ROI.

Ensuring Ad Integrity: Substantiation and Legal Text Requirements

In the realm of TV advertising, the veracity of your ad’s claims is paramount. Clearcast enforces rigorous standards to ensure that all claims are substantiated, maintaining the integrity of the advertising space.

Substantiating Claims in TV Advertisements

When you’re making claims in your TV ads, Clearcast requires concrete evidence to support them. This substantiation process involves:

  • Providing proof of claims, such as scientific studies or consumer testimonials.
  • Ensuring stock levels are sufficient if the ad promises availability.
  • Adhering to all legalities, including regulations specific to your product or service.

At Hightower Video, we assist you in compiling and presenting this evidence to meet Clearcast’s standards, ensuring your ad’s claims are beyond reproach.

Verification of Advert Claims by Clearcast

Clearcast meticulously verifies the evidence you provide. This verification process includes:

  • Assessing the relevance and reliability of supporting documents.
  • Ensuring that the evidence is current and applicable to the claims made.

We guide you through this process, helping you understand what Clearcast looks for, so your ad stands the best chance of approval.

Legal Text Requirements for TV Ads

Legal text in TV ads must be clear and legible to viewers. Clearcast specifies that:

  • The text must be at least 16 TV lines in height.
  • The duration of legibility must be sufficient for viewers to read and understand the information.

We ensure that your ad meets these legal text requirements, maintaining compliance and viewer trust.

Preventing Seizure-Inducing Content with the Harding Test

Clearcast employs the Harding test to screen ads for seizure-inducing flashes. This test is crucial for:

  • Protecting viewers with photosensitive epilepsy.
  • Ensuring your ad is safe for broadcast to a wide audience.

Our team at Hightower Video ensures your ad passes the Harding test, prioritizing the well-being of your audience and the broadcast suitability of your content.

Clearcast’s Ad Approval Criteria and Appeals

Clearcast’s role in maintaining the integrity of UK television advertising is underpinned by its stringent criteria for ad approval. These criteria ensure that all commercials not only comply with legal requirements but also uphold the standards of taste and decency expected by the viewing public.

Assessing Taste, Decency, and Technical Quality

Clearcast evaluates advertisements against a comprehensive set of standards to ensure they are appropriate for a diverse audience:

  • Taste and Decency: Ads must not offend or cause harm, adhering to societal norms and values.
  • Technical Standards: Commercials should meet specific technical criteria, including audio and visual quality, to ensure a professional broadcast experience.
  • Legal and Ethical Compliance: All ads must comply with the BCAP Code, which governs broadcast advertising, and the CAP Code for non-broadcast advertising.

Addressing Medical Considerations

Clearcast takes public health seriously, particularly concerning medical considerations such as epilepsy triggers:

  • Ads are rigorously tested using the Harding FPA test to ensure they do not contain seizure-inducing visual patterns or flashing lights.

Navigating the Appeals Process

If your ad does not receive clearance, Clearcast provides a structured appeals process:

  • Initial Feedback: Clearcast offers detailed feedback and compliance suggestions.
  • Formal Appeals: You can formally appeal a decision, providing additional information or modifications for reconsideration.

Impact of Clearcast’s Private Status

As a private company, Clearcast operates independently of judicial review, but it maintains a commitment to fairness and transparency:

  • Private Company Status: This allows for a more streamlined and flexible approach to ad clearance and appeals.

At Hightower Video, we support you through every step of this process, ensuring that your ads not only meet Clearcast’s criteria but also resonate with your target audience.

The Impact of Clearcast Decisions on TV Advertising and Production

Clearcast’s decisions carry significant weight in the UK advertising industry, influencing the content and delivery of TV advertisements. Understanding the implications of their rulings is crucial for production companies and marketing agencies.

Clearcast’s Role in Political Advertising

The Greenpeace Rang-tan video case is a prime example of Clearcast’s influence on political advertising. The decision to deny clearance for the video highlighted Clearcast’s commitment to enforcing the BCAP Code, which prohibits political advertising on television. This incident underscores the importance of understanding and adhering to advertising regulations to avoid potential setbacks.

Production Companies and Agency Roles in Clearance

Production companies and agencies play a pivotal role in the Clearcast clearance process. They are responsible for:

  • Managing the submission of scripts and supporting documents.
  • Ensuring that all claims are substantiated and comply with Clearcast’s guidelines.
  • Incorporating feedback from Clearcast to refine the advertisement.

At Hightower Video, we provide comprehensive support to ensure your ad navigates this process successfully.

Utilizing Clearcast’s Feedback for Ad Production

Clearcast’s feedback and compliance suggestions are invaluable during ad production. They help to:

  • Refine the ad’s content to meet regulatory standards.
  • Avoid potential issues that could delay or prevent ad clearance.

Consequences of Clearcast’s Approval or Denial

The outcome of Clearcast’s review process has direct implications for your TV ad campaigns:

  • Approval grants your ad access to the UK’s television audience and provides a level of complaint immunity.
  • Denial offers an opportunity to receive constructive feedback and make necessary adjustments.

Navigating these outcomes effectively is part of our service commitment to you at Hightower Video.

Hightower Video: Navigating Clearcast Compliance

At Hightower Video, we pride ourselves on being your steadfast ally in achieving Clearcast compliance. Our in-depth knowledge of Clearcast’s guidelines ensures that your TV ads not only meet regulatory standards but also resonate with your target audience.

Ensuring Adherence to Clearcast’s Guidelines

We meticulously review your ad content against Clearcast’s criteria, focusing on:

  • Honesty and Transparency: Your ads will be vetted for truthful representation.
  • Decency and Public Health: We ensure your content is appropriate and safe for all audiences.
  • Technical Standards: Your ads will meet the technical specifications required for broadcast.

Comprehensive Support for Ad Production and Clearance

Our support extends beyond compliance checks. We offer:

  • Script and Rough Cut Reviews: To catch potential issues early in the production process.
  • Substantiation Assistance: Helping you compile the necessary evidence for your ad’s claims.
  • Liaison with Clearcast: We communicate directly with Clearcast on your behalf to streamline the clearance process.

Expertise in Clearcast Processes

Our expertise in Clearcast processes provides you with:

  • Strategic Insights: We offer guidance on how to align your creative vision with regulatory requirements.
  • Time-Saving Solutions: Our familiarity with Clearcast’s systems and procedures can significantly reduce clearance timeframes.

Why Choose Hightower Video

Choosing Hightower Video means partnering with a team that is:

  • Experienced: Our years of working with Clearcast translate into a smoother clearance experience for you.
  • Client-Focused: Your goals become our mission, ensuring your ads achieve the impact you desire.
  • Result-Driven: We are committed to delivering results that not only comply with regulations but also drive your brand forward.

Connect with Hightower Video for Clearcast Clearance

Navigating the Clearcast clearance process is a nuanced task, and at Hightower Video, we specialize in guiding marketing agencies through every step. If you’re looking to ensure your TV ads are compliant and ready for broadcast, reaching out to us is straightforward.

Contacting Hightower Video

To begin the process, you can contact us through:

  • Email: Send us your queries at
  • Phone: Give us a call at +44 (0) 20 8004 9000 for a direct conversation.
  • Online Form: Fill out a contact form on our website for a prompt response.

Partnering Benefits with Hightower Video

By choosing Hightower Video, you gain:

  • Expert Guidance: Our team’s in-depth knowledge of Clearcast’s requirements ensures your ads are cleared without delay.
  • Comprehensive Support: From script to screen, we provide end-to-end assistance, including substantiation of claims and legal text compliance.

Streamlining Your Clearance Process

We facilitate a smooth clearance process by:

  • Proactive Planning: Anticipating and addressing potential compliance issues early on.
  • Clear Communication: Keeping you informed at every stage of the clearance process.

Why Choose Hightower Video

Selecting Hightower Video for your Clearcast clearance needs means:

  • Reliability: Trust in our proven track record of navigating Clearcast’s requirements.
  • Efficiency: Save time with our streamlined approach to ad clearance.
  • Peace of Mind: Rest assured, knowing your ad will meet all compliance standards before it airs.

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