Posted by: ilanasmith | May 2, 2008

When the Branding Department Goes on Holiday

I tend to think that Britain and its former Colonial peons may have cornered the market on particularly colourful and evocative phrasing; the first time ex-Oz that I used "gives me the shits" to describe something annoying taught me not everything translates.  I’ve recently learned a picturesque Canadian phrase (thanks Bridget) that apparently means to slack off or to do no work, and I’m pleased to be able to use it so promptly and aptly before I forget it.  (My mother adopted a similar approach upon learning "mofo" from me.)  So:

At work recently we’ve been talking about situations where it seems that marketing or branding folk may have been fucking the dog.

There. That said, I can now move on to my story:

It started with Stuart’s parents bringing him a packet of The Gayest Biscuits Ever (TM Nick), Iced VoVos.  He noticed that their tag is "Sweet and Interesting".  Sweet.  And interesting.  Accurate, yes, but hardly inspiring.

I then discovered that the advertising tag for Dunlop Volleys (which I have a sudden and nostalgic hankering for) is "exceptionally average".

This all may be topped by seeing an ad for a Nivea product called "Light Feeling Sun Lotion".  This immediately reads like a clunky translation, but I’m still wanting to buy sunscreen that promises to just grope me mildly.



  1. I too have been longing for Volleys, even though I know they’ll give me clown feet :/

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