The catchy phrases that serve as advertising slogans are considered to be one of the most effective ways of drawing attention to a product from potential customers. A successful slogan makes its target audience feel good, or builds desire for a specific product or service. Advertising slogans also can become familiar to an audience over time, an art known as branding. Advertising slogans are usually penned by advertising agency copywriters, some of whom have gone on to become famed novelists. When he toiled as a copywriter, author Salmon Rushdie coined a slogan describing fresh cream cakes as "naughty but nice."
At the dawn of World War I, a poster urging British volunteers to serve their country borrowed a quote from Lord Kitchener as its slogan: "Your Country Needs You." The poster became a worldwide sensation and spawned an American version: "Uncle Sam Needs You." Although modern advertising was still in its infancy, the power of slogans was quickly realized. A 1922 article in the "New York Times" noted an increased use of slogans "in the marketing of practically all lines of merchandise." During the 1930s Kelloggs introduced its famous "Snap! Crackle! Pop!" slogan for Rice Krispies, and Hallmark recommended its cards "when you care enough to send the very best." The advent of TV advertising has produced thousands of additional slogans, some that have become fixtures of contemporary culture, but also many others that vanished without leaving much of a mark.
More than $140 billion is spent on advertising annually in the United States. The agencies creating these ads are always searching for the next magical slogan that will improve the image and increase the sales of a key client.
An effective advertise slogan strives to make a simple and direct yet often witty statement; adopt a distinctive tone or personality; state the key benefits of a product or brand to potential customers; promote the credibility of a brand or product; create a consumer demand or desire for a brand or product; and stick in the viewer's memory.
Famous Advertising Slogans
According to "Advertising Age" magazine, the 10 best slogans from the past 100 years include: 1. Diamonds are forever (DeBeers) 2. Just do it (Nike) 3. The pause that refreshes (Coca-Cola) 4. Tastes great, less filling (Miller Lite) 5. We try harder (Avis) 6. Good to the last drop (Maxwell House) 7. Breakfast of champions (Wheaties) 8. Does she ... or doesn't she? (Clairol) 9. When it rains it pours (Morton Salt) 10. Where's the beef? (Wendy's)
In addition to their role in advertising, slogans can be used to promote public behaviors and attitudes. In 1944, Smokey Bear became a symbol for outdoor fire safety when he warned people "Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires." Woodsy Owl did his part to keep the environment clean when he starting urging children in 1970 to "Give a hoot. Don't Pollute." Slogans also have a long history in political campaigns. During the 2008 presidential campaign, Republican John McCain embraced the "Country First" slogan while Democrat Barack Obama opted for "Change We Can Believe In."