I want you to take a look at the video that I have posted above.
Now let’s take a pop quiz.
What’s wrong with this ad?
a. Strongbow “fired” Patrick Stewart as their ad spokesman
b. Strongbow said that ice is their main selling point
c. Their tagline is “Bestest over ice”
If you answered “C”, the you are correct. This is a grammatically incorrect sentence, and whether or not Strongbow ironically put it there, it’s going to stick in any Grammar Nazi’s craw. Now granted, in the game of advertising, your main focus isn’t on being grammatically correct, but still, the art of selling a product shouldn’t have to rely on inventing a word to make it seem better than Angry Orchard. Could Strongbow have used a term that would have made their ad more grammatically appealing, like Outstanding, or Excellent? They could have, but It probably wouldn’t have been as catchy as “Bestest”.
Now granted, Strongbow isn’t the first brand to utilize grammatical errors to sell a product. Look at Apple’s famous “Think Different” ad campaign. We all get that Steve Jobs is supposed to be our grand savior, the man who presented us with an alternative to Microsoft, but really, this ad campaign is awful, awkward, and just doesn’t work grammatically. What’s even more funny is the fact that the Simpsons handwaved it in an episode a few years back.
Think Differently, indeed.
So the next time you watch and ad campaign, be sure to keep an eye on the grammar that goes into the slogan. I can tell you right now, I’m definitely not going to be buying Strongbow anytime soon.