Mottos and Mascots

Charles Payne
Posted: May 23, 2014 12:01 AM
Mottos and Mascots

"Be Your Way" -Burger King Motto

Memorable slogans are usually long.
In truth, it is difficult to find many short slogans that are memorable. Most of the slogans people remember are relatively long. -Al Ries

"Ace is the place with the helpful hardware man."

"Avis is only No.2 in rent-a-cars, so why go with us? We try harder."

"The first vacuum cleaner that doesn't lose suction."

"15 minutes can save you 15 percent or more on car insurance."

"What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas."

"Melts in your mouth, not in your hands."

"All the news that's fit to print."

"That's the name and away go troubles down the drain."

"Strong enough for a man, but made for a woman."

"With a name like Smuckers, it's got to be good."

"Made from sugar, so it tastes like sugar."

From Ad Age

The new Burger King motto points to a form of desperation surpassed only by the "Happy" mascot which has been met with public scorn and confusion (more on this later). The thing about this motto, is that the company is going beyond selling burgers, to endorsing a lifestyle that says, 'anything goes' - I guess.

There are all kinds of overtones within a motto in a nation, which is knocking down old taboos and beliefs. In the end, I suspect that it is all about ignoring convention, which is really part of a campaign to replace convention. I doubt the motto does anything to help sales, but it does speak volumes regarding where this nation is heading.

"Turn on, tune in, drop out"

Recently, I made comparisons to the 1970s, both economically and politically with the general malaise that clouded that decade which now permeates the air these days, too. However, that decade came out of the 60s, where the countercultural revolution took root.

Considering how many people are dropping out of the labor force, the legalization of marijuana and the vulgarity that is pop culture, one could say, that Timothy Leary's motto is alive and well. What is interesting in this era of shared sacrifice is that so little is being asked of individuals who are in the 99%, while those in the 1% and the corporations are being told you cannot "Be your way!"

Then there is the McDonald's abomination...the new Happy Meal mascot.

What the heck is this? Instant reaction on social media was scathing and harsh. This already looks like the "New Coke" of mascots and should be dumped, sooner rather than later. Did the food police scare McDonald's so much, that the company has lost its mind?

Mickey D's has other fish to fry for sure, as they are fighting on two fronts. There are the burger wars and all the hot new restaurants, and then there are non-burger joints surging in this new age of healthy eating.

Fast Growing Restaurant Chains 2013
10. Panda Express
9. Zaxby's
8. Little Caesars
7. Moe's Southwest Grill
6. Chipotle Mexican Grill
5. Wingstop
4. Buffalo Wild Wings
3. Cheddar's
2. Jimmy John's Gourmet Sandwiches
1. Firehouse Subs

Cheering on the Dropout Nation

There is a report from Express Employment Professionals that states that 47% of the unemployed have "completely given up" looking for work. I suspect corporate America is coming to terms with the situation. The chronically unemployed have to eat like anyone else. Nevertheless, the details of the report were even more frightening than the headline. I say that we are enabling people to turn on, tune in, and drop out and if we are honest, we are doing them more harm than good.

  • 44% are not willing to relocate to a new city or town to find work
  • 60% are not willing to relocate to another state to find work
  • 64% have no plans to go back to school to become more marketable
  • 7% are currently enrolled in classes

Sliver of Hope

Moreover, I think there is a greater dose of honesty emerging among people who are unemployed, echoed in other parts of the Express survey.

  • 45% blame the economy for being out of work
  • 36% blame themselves
  • 19% blame their last boss
  • 18% blame government