Friday, March 11, 2011


“How to get your roommate to clean the room?”
“How to survive the boring talks of your girlfriend?”
“How to stare at other women, in front of your girlfriend?”

Find all your answers at the “University of Freshology”. These new advertisements of Sprite which ask you to “first drink, then think” are bringing a smile on many faces! The new advertisements take a fresh look at Sprite while keeping the ‘Brand Image’ the same. From the beginning, Sprite has believed in one thought – unlike other innumerable products / brands that promised you impossible benefits, Sprite offered you only freshness. From the time it was launched in India in 1999, with the tagline “Sprite bujhay only pyaas, baki all bakwaas”, it has stuck to its image of being the no-nonsense- just-thirst-quencher brand. This time too, its advertisements are interesting and, well, obviously refreshing.


They are really more powerful than a bomb if handled well. The right words can spark a revolution, can make people even give up their lives for you. Many a time, they even change the world. When Mother Teresa said, “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one” she changed the perspectives of a lot of people who thought how helping just one person could change the world? She showed them how – with her words. Martin Luther King spoke about apartheid & its indignities and people cried after they heard his famous speech “I have a dream”. He even told people to speak up when they saw injustice; and for that he said: “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” In his own humorous way, Woody Allen echoed our anxiety about death when he said, “It’s not that I’m afraid to die. I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”

It’s more often than not that great words make an advertisement more memorable. Sometimes witty, sometimes crisp, sometimes direct, sometimes funny, never boring, but always simple and easy to remember. Consider these, “Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia”, or “Because, you’re worth it – L’Oréal”, or “Let your fingers do the walking – Yellow Pages”. These short and very simple sentences defined the whole business, the benefits of buying or using the brand, and stuck to our memory like glue! In fact, some great advertising punch-lines consisted of only two words. Here are some, “Connecting People – Nokia”, “Life’s Good – LG”, “Hello Moto – Motorola”, “Live Unboring – Ikea”, “Intel Inside – Intel”. In fact, it took just two words to unite our country against the British: “Quit India!” Sometimes, even one word did the trick. Budweiser’s “Wassup” tagline made the brand look young and super cool!

Some ad jingles and slogans became so famous and were etched so firmly in people’s memory that they were used to make a point by famous people to prove their point. When Burger King came out with its tagline “Where’s the beef?” indicating that its burgers were beefier and hence better than the competitor’s where you hardly spotted the beef, the three words became a rage. Even some presidential candidates quoted them to show their superiority over their competitors.

“Just Do It” is again one of those very famous taglines that has been used by all of us during our conversations. It not just became a part of our lingo, but catapulted Nike to great heights, making it a Power Brand! A survey showed that 45% of Britons regularly use the line from Guinness commercials, “Good things come to those who wait.” It’s amazing, the impact advertisements have on our lives, our thoughts, and our speech. Some 80% people have claimed to use advertising slogans in their day to day conversations. Time to think which ones do you use most frequently! That’s the power of advertising and “I’m lovin’ it”. After all, its advertising that’s “The Real Thing”.

IBM was the big daddy of computing. Back in 1914, its tagline “Think” became a big hit. Then, a few decades later, came Apple with its tagline “Think Different”, to show the world that the rules of the game were different now and the world of computing had a new Godfather!


A great slogan or tagline comes with no expiry date. It lives on almost forever. “Utterly... butterly...” You know which brand I am referring to. “Thanda matlab...” Again, I don’t need to complete the slogan. A great tagline is sometimes all you need to increase your sales and beat your competitors. After all, with so much choice, the consumer most of the time buys on impulse and those are his emotions many a time that help him decide when he is confused with too many choices. The right combination of words helps create those positive feelings. Onida’s slogan “Neighbour’s envy, owner’s pride” made you feel proud about owning it (wish they would bring back the slogan again in their ad campaigns). LIC’s slogan “Jeevan ke saath bhi, jeevan ke baad bhi” gently and in a non-threatening manner told you about the benefits of a life insurance policy.

Words live on, even after the people who spoke them are gone. In fact, sometimes your last words become the image that people remember you with. The last words Karl Marx spoke were “Go on, get out. Last words are for fools who haven’t said enough.” William Wallace, the Scottish Patriot, screamed “Freedom” even as he was tortured to death, according to the film based on his life Braveheart. In fact, some words have made films immortal. From Scarlett O’Hara’s very famous last words in the film Gone with the Wind (“After all, tomorrow is another day”) to Amjad Khan in Sholay (“Kitne aadmi the”), words live on in our memories & remain a part of our daily language forever almost!


Just as words have the power to make fortunes, they can destroy them too. Verbal slips, gaffes can prove to be disastrous. One person who was very famous for this was George Bush. In fact, his gaffes are so famous & so many that they can be published as a book of “Bushisms”. One of his famous gaffes is, “We are concerned about AIDS inside our White House – make no mistake about it.” Take another one – it’s even better than the previous one, “Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.”

The one who has a command over his words truly leads. Every word that Gandhi spoke was a treasure house of wisdom. He knew and understood freedom and the power of the mind, and expressed it like no other. He said, “You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind.” His words broke the spirit of the British. Rabindranath’s words strengthened the spirits of the freedom fighters as they repeated his lines, “Where the mind is without fear and the head held high, ... into that heaven of freedom, my father, let my country awake.”

Our greatest heroes gave us the greatest quotes & words of wisdom. Our greatest brands have the best worded slogans and tag lines. If you want to inspire, lead, conquer the world or the markets, the first thing you need to do is develop a masteryover the words you speak. From children, to workers, to consumers, everybody loves “Seedhi baat, no bakwaas!”


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