Big companies selling goods and services push heavy marketing on us, especially during the holiday season. The slogans become crucial. It needs to be short and memorable. But it doesn't necessarily need to tell you the truth.
Clif Dickens, a 27 year-old freelance graphic designer based in Nashville, TN, decided to explore this marketing technique through cleverly designed parody graphics on Tumblr.
The Tumblr site is called “Honest Slogans.”
“It’s a criticism of the system and advertising,” Dickens said in an interview with Fusion. “I want to be positive, but fighting, and still be tongue and cheek.”
He said the idea came to him when he and a friend went to a restaurant that offered Pepsi. When he ordered a Coke, the server apologized and asked if a Pepsi would suffice.
Then he thought, “what if we made the slogan ‘would you settle for our drink?’”
And he believes it would not hurt companies to tell it like it is.
“PR companies spend millions of dollars on research, but you can be honest and people would still use your product,” he said. “It’s a win-win.”
But of course, only if the truth about the product doesn’t turn you off.
However, Dickens believes that social media has allowed for companies to know when something is not satisfactory and cater to the audience.
Hmm, with all this marketing and social media knowledge, is “Honest Slogans” a ploy for him to garner more clients?
“There is a subconscious advertising element there,” he said. “I've always been interested in marketing, advertising, and human behavior.”
One human result, for example, is the amount of hits his site has gotten so far. He says, at its peak, it had 100,000 visitors a day.
So take a look at some of Dickens’ designs and see if you agree with his point of view.