Heinz Blows It

A while back, here in the US, some guy in Heinz marketing had a really bright idea. It went something like this...

Let's have a competition where we get people to come up with jokey slogans to go on the front of our tomato ketchup bottles.

Which was, frankly, a winning idea. I was amazed to see these cute, smart jokes on the front of the bottles. I thought it was genius. I was amazed that their marketing people actually let them get away with it.

The slogans were something like this:

Warning: Slow moving condiment enclosed
Easier To Spell Than Worcestershire
Comforts Burnt Hot Dogs
French Fries Not Included
Hides Grill Marks
For Best Results, Eat
Will Work For Food

And many many more. All funny. All just popped at you from the shelves.

Well, today I was at the store and I saw a new set of them. Ladies and gentlemen, that original marketing guy with a bright idea obviously has left the company, because now they're using it to market Ore-Ida(R) potato products.

Which sucks. Because it took a great, innovative idea that made the company look smart, intelligent and consumer savvy - in other words, not Yet Another Faceless Marketing & PR Organization Who Thinks Their Customers Are Sheep - and turned it into Yet Another PR Move From An Organization Who Thinks Their Customers Are Sheep.

Heinz - you took a great idea, and you blew it. I don't know if you got cocky, or just have morons working in your marketing dept, but you lost the kudos you gained in one easy swoop that way.

Shoulda just had a splash in the corner saying "Goes Great with Ore-Ida Fries!".

About the author

Simon Cooke is an occasional video game developer, ex-freelance journalist, screenwriter, film-maker, musician, and software engineer in Seattle, WA.

The views posted on this blog are his and his alone, and have no relation to anything he's working on, his employer, or anything else and are not an official statement of any kind by them (and barely even one by him most of the time).

Archived Wordpress comments
Anonymous wrote on Friday, July 8, 2005:

When you find yourself angry about ketchup marketing, it may be time to take a vacation.

Simon Cooke wrote on Saturday, July 9, 2005:

Who sez I’m angry? :)

Yes Sir, I Will! wrote on Saturday, August 13, 2005:

Fuck! I bought that brand for years and didn’t even realize they had an off beat Ad going. Now that’s a reason for a brain boot.

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