Death of the Ad Slogan

Advertising, Personal

The 1980s and 90s gave us commercials with slogans that would run in different scenarios for several months. Think of the “Dude, you’re gettin’ a Dell” or “Yo quiero Taco Bell”. These ad slogans were easy to remember and created a pop culture phenomenon and following for the company. It was like a commercial catchphrase that was easy for consumers to engage in an applicable to several different commercial ideas. Was this their tagline for the company? Not necessarily.

These commercials were catchy and funny. People were entertained by the ideas, followed the characters, and produced a long-lasting impression on the pop culture landscape. These commercials spawned merchandise and several commercial spots that strengthened the campaign idea.

But what about today’s commercials? Even the ‘best’ commercials or the most popular commercials don’t have the longevity of the aforementioned spots. You don’t see people quoting the Old Spice’s “The man your man could smell like.

Is this a change  in our society or a change in the advertising climate?

I personally think this may be a change in advertising. Don’t get me wrong, I think the commercials out right now have incredible concepts that can run in different situations, but I don’t think they are as easy to remember. I think they have memorable lines people can still quote and eventually make their way into pop culture, but they don’t always include the company name. By creating these funny commercials which work their way into our hearts, they are inevitably leaving their brand out in the cold, heartless world of the consumerism.

By creating clever lines that combine humor and brand loyalty, advertising can retain their staying power.

12 thoughts on “Death of the Ad Slogan

  1. I think this is a change in our society and in our advertising climate. There has been a marked trend in the departure from these catchy slogans but I think it’s because consumers have become smarter and advertisers have had to respond. In the 80s, 90s and even early 2000s it was fun and somewhat cool to be walking around saying stuff like “Dude, you’re gettin’ a Dell” or asking a friend what they’re doing only to get the response, “You know, just watching the game, havin’ a Bud” even though that’s not at all what was occurring (see Budweiser “Waz up” campaign). Now, I think people subconsciously (or maybe consciously) don’t want to be seen or thought of as walking, talking ads. There is now a certain stigma towards advertising, so now ads must capture or entertain audiences rather than subject them to mindless memes. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the fun slogans. But, as consumers have evolved, advertising has been forced to as well.

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