Model Naomi Campbell made an embarrassing Instagram blunder.

Ahhhhh, that old chestnut: When you’re asked to upload a photo on your social media platform for PR purposes and you foolishly copy and post the whole message, not just the bit they ask you to caption your post with.

Naomi Campbell seems to be the latest star to fall into the common trap of accidentally including her PR contact’s whole message including instructions of what to write, posting an image of Adidas sneakers to her account yesterday.

Alongside the image, she wrote, “Naomi, so nice to see you in good spirits!!! Could you please put something like: Thanks to my friend @gary.aspden and all at adidas – loving these adidas 350 SPZL from the adidas Spezial range.”

The instructions were quickly deleted, but not before many eagle-eyed fans could screen-shot concrete evidence of the faux-pas.

Of course, undisclosed sponsored social media posts are not new nor groundbreaking when it comes to advertising. Our feeds are saturated with celebrities endorsing everything from teeth-whitening products to food processors, lacking the kind of transparency they should probably embrace. Regardless, it seems our common-sense usually prevails as we are solidly conditioned to be able to recognise endorsements from reality as a result of the sheer number we see.

But as Campbell shows, there seems to be a new kind of PR trend in town. And one that seeks to demand a greater audience than just Campbell's own Instagram following. It's the oops-this-is-sponsored-I-just-let-the-cat-out-of-the-bag-kind. Because what's better PR than a simple Instagram post? One that makes headlines, of course.


Scott Disick was one of the first celebrities to really enter into the waters of the accidentally-obvious sponsored post, just last month endorsing a weight loss shake.

Alongside the image, Disick wrote,“Here you go, at 4pm est, write the below. Caption: Keeping up with the summer workout routine with my morning @booteauk.”

Whether it was an accident or not, suddenly the product that Disick was endorsing found itself the subject of much greater conversation than an Instagram photo would ignite. And so, PR companies no doubt rejoiced. They 'lifted the lid' on something we already knew about, and received free advertising in the process.

Campbell's Instagram could've been a careless mistake: the kind of apathetic response to a sponsored 'gram that's borne from posting too many. Or, it may have been a deliberate way to steal headlines.

Whatever the intent, it worked. You're reading about it, and I'm writing about it. And it could just be the newest PR move in town.

Watch Ben Fordham talk about social media and its impact during a No Filter interview with Mia Freedman.