Native Advertising Guidelines

Native Advertising Guidelines for Newspapers and Inserts

The publication instructions concern native advertising that has a similar layout to the editorial content of the paper. The purpose of the guidelines is to facilitate ad planning and to guarantee that the commercial content stands out from the editorial content. This benefits the paper, the reader and the advertiser.

The native advertising guidelines apply to the following media: Helsingin Sanomat, HS Viikko, Kuukausiliite Monthly Supplement, HS Teema (Theme) Magazine and Ilta-Sanomat.

A reader relationship founded on trust is a fundamental asset behind the success of Helsingin Sanomat and Ilta-Sanomat. Due to this, Helsingin Sanomat and Ilta-Sanomat have decided to revise their guidelines concerning advertorials in order to avoid the risk of mistakes more efficiently than before.

The new publication instructions concern native advertising with a layout that resembles the paper's editorial content and that contains body text similarly to the editorial content. The purpose of the guidelines is to facilitate ad planning and to guarantee that the commercial content stands out from the editorial content. This benefits the paper, the reader and the advertiser.

Fonts and Layout

  • The fonts used in the ad must differ markedly from those used in the media where the ad is published.
  • Sans-serif fonts must be used in Helsingin Sanomat and Ilta-Sanomat, e.g. Arial or Helvetica.
  • The paragraph spacing or paragraph width in a native ad is not specified.

A native advertisement must have a border and the word MAINOS ("ADVERTISEMENT") in it

Border

  • Width 5 mm (14pt)
  • The advertiser may choose the colour, and the colour must clearly stand out from the page of the paper. The media's brand colours may not be used in native ads. However, the advertiser is free to use its own brand colours even when they resemble the colours of the media where the advertisement is published.

The Word MAINOS ("ADVERTISEMENT")

  • Must appear at the top left-hand side and the bottom right-hand side of the border.
  • Written in capital letters and with a bold sans-serif font (e.g. Arial Bold / Helvetica Bold).
  • Font size 12pt.
  • The colour must be black or white, depending on whichever stands out better from the colour of the border.
  • Native ads that clearly stand out from editorial content due to e.g. their background colour or image must only include the word MAINOS at the top and bottom, according to the instructions above. A border is not necessary in such cases.

Unclear Cases or a Missing Border

In unclear cases, we ask that the material is submitted for review 24 hours (1 working day) before the material deadline. The editors of the paper will decide whether borders are required or not. If borders are missing in a native ad, the material is returned to the sender so that changes can be made. If the material sender is not reached, Sanoma's material services staff have the right to add borders to the material. In these cases, we use dark grey borders (C0, M0, Y0, K70) and add the word MAINOS in white.

Examples:

A border and the words MAINOS ("ADVERTISEMENT") must be added to the ad when its content resembles editorial content.

native1

The ad below does not require a border, but only the word MAINOS in the top left-hand and bottom right-hand corners. The colour and image background of the ad distinguish it from editorial content.

native2

The ad is publishable when the ad already has an image background. 

native3

CONTEXT: Clause 16 in the Guidelines for Journalists stipulates that a clear demarcation must be kept between advertising and editorial content and that hidden advertising must be avoided. In 2015, the Council for Mass Media issued a separate recommendation on the separation of journalistic and commercial content. This was inspired by the varying interpretations of the Guidelines for Journalists as the media has begun to use expressions and terms for commercial content that are not clear enough. These inconsistent practices may undermine public confidence towards the media.

Native Advertising Guidelines for Magazines

The publication instructions concern native advertising that has a similar layout to the editorial content of the magazine and contains a body of text that is typical to editorial material. The purpose of these guidelines is to facilitate ad planning and to guarantee that the commercial content stands out from the editorial content. The ad must also clearly identify whose product or service is being marketed. This benefits the magazine, the reader and the advertiser.

The native advertising guidelines apply to the following brands: Aku Ankka, ET, ET Terveys, Gloria, Glorian Koti, Glorian ruoka & viini, HS Meidän perhe, Hyvä Terveys, Kodin Kuvalehti, Matkaopas, Me Naiset, Sport, Suuri Käsityö, Tiede and Tiede Luonto.

The native ad must be separated from journalistic content using the word AD (“MAINOS”)

AD

  • The word AD (“MAINOS” in Finnish) must be displayed clearly and horizontally in the material in one of the top corners of the page. If a fixed position has been purchased for the ad, the word must be positioned along the outer edge of the page according to the fixed position or the desired and confirmed layout. If no fixed position has been purchased in the magazine, the word should be positioned in the top left-hand corner.
  • In a spread, the word must appear horizontally in both top corners.
  • AD (“MAINOS”) is written in capital letters. The font size is 12 pt.
  • The headline or text of the ad cannot contain the name of the magazine brand without on-going co-operation and informing the editor-in-chief about it.

Fonts and Layout

  • The fonts used in the ad must differ markedly from those used in the media where the ad is published. The customer’s brand fonts may be used.
  • The use of images, paragraph divisions and paragraph widths in native ads have not been specified. The advertiser must make sure that they have commercial rights to use all the images for the entire duration of the publication.
  • The advertiser’s name and logo must be clearly displayed in the ad (at the bottom of the ad or some other suitable place).
  • The brand colours of the magazine should be avoided. The customer’s brand colours may be used.

Good Marketing Practice and Industry-specific Regulations

All native advertising must comply with good marketing practice and observe the regulations and guidelines of the industry in question. According to good marketing practice, advertising must not be misleading, violence is unacceptable, discrimination based on gender or ethnicity is not permitted and the interests of the child must be considered.

In addition, the regulations of various industries should be observed, such as:

Advertising to children:

Advertising containing health claims:

  • Advertising may only contain approved health claims. Health claims may be used provided that the claim fulfils the requirements given in the Claims Regulation and that its use has been approved in advance.
  • Read more about the code of ethics for health and pharmaceutical advertising: https://www.pif.fi/media/tiedostot/pif-code-of-ethics-2019.pdf

Responsibility of the Editor-in-chief

The final decision concerning the publication of the material is always made by the editor-in-chief of the product in question. If the material does not comply with the material specifications, the editor-in-chief can propose changes or refuse to publish the material. If changes are required, the material is returned to the sender and they are asked to make the necessary changes. Due to this, we ask that you submit the material for review well in advance before the material deadline, no later than two working days before the material deadline. If there is not enough time to edit an unclear case, the editor-in-chief may refuse to publish the ad.

CONTEXT: Clause 16 in the Guidelines for Journalists stipulates that a clear demarcation must be kept between advertising and editorial content and that hidden advertising must be avoided. In 2015, the Council for Mass Media issued a separate recommendation on the separation of journalistic and commercial content. This was inspired by the varying interpretations of the Guidelines for Journalists as the media has begun to use expressions and terms for commercial content that are not clear enough. These inconsistent practices may undermine public confidence towards the media.