‘Do AC’ – a new destination slogan
This destination is spending $20 million this year on promotion. Part of that has been the development of its slogan – ‘Do AC!’ – the exclamation mark is part of the slogan. What do you think of that? Coincidentally, I wrote some quick guidelines for destination slogans just the other day. These guidelines also are applicable to tag lines and product slogans. I wrote that slogans should be:
Original. Not used by any other similar destination – preferably not by ANY other destination.
Brief. Some destinations have slogans which are far too long. Bushnell has “It’s Not the End of the Earth, But You Can See It From Here.” Way too long. (That slogan also includes a negative word).
Easily understood by people who do not have English as their first language. This means that clever though the slogans may be, people will not understand “Where Yee-Ha Meets Olé”, “Newark, on a Roll” or “City with Sol.” (The latter particularly as Americans pronounce ‘sol’ as ‘soul’ – the only country to do so – others say ‘sol’.
Positive. Contain no negative words or negative aspirations. Andover has “Where the People Are Warm Even When the Weather Isn’t.” This just tells me it’s a cold place. The same goes for slogans such as “You’ll want to stay for ever” – an aspiration that won’t be possible.
Accurate. Words such as ‘paradise’, heavenly’ or ‘best’ should be avoided. Medford has “Great Performances Every Day”. The first thing you see on their website is that slogan and a list (of three) events showing that they do not have great performances every day.
Timeless. Cleveland has “Cleveland Rocks!” Hardly anyone says that things ‘rock’ these days and those who do won’t in a few years. It is dated.
How does “Do AC!” fit into those guidelines?
I’m nor quite sure when the word ‘do’ changed its meaning from what you’ll find in a dictionary:
- To perform or execute: do one’s assigned task; do a series of business deals.
- To fulfill the requirements of: did my duty at all times.
- To carry out; commit: a crime that had been done on purpose.
Further, any dictionary will tell you that ‘do’ is slang for, as it describes it, ‘fecal matter’.
Why am I talking about a dictionary definition? Because the point I make above, that slogans should be easily understood by people who don’t have English as their first is important. Furthermore, many won’t understand what AC means either. You might. I didn’t. As a Floridian, AC means air-conditioning to me.The funny thing is that this destination’s previous slogan was ‘Always Turned On’ and was seen as being a bit risqué. Well sorry and maybe it’s just me – it often is – but ‘Do AC’ just makes me think of Debbie Does Dallas.
UPDATE APRIL 17th
The above was written five days ago . Evidently I am not the only one who objects to the ‘Do AC!’ slogan (although evidently, and confusingly, it isn’t a slogan, see the link below.)
In an article published today, the writer claims that the information was ‘irresponsibly leaked’. He goes on to say that the reason everyone is so negative about the new slogan is that everyone today is miserable, He says “People are just in a bad mood overall. The economy stinks. Gasoline prices are the highest ever recorded. The federal government is trying to create a socialist state in America. People have had it. When the mood in America is this cranky, bad news sells, whether it’s true or false.”
I’m not sure if he’s calling the ‘Do AC!’ slogan bad news there, but it looks that way, doesn’t it? He says that “there was no context attached. The entire marketing campaign to surround these few letters was absent.” The article I read was reporting a press conference by the city’s tourism alliance explaining all about the new promotion and slogan. So if it was out of context, then that’s a problem for the alliance and its PR people. If they couldn’t explain it properly at their own press conference, who could? Whose job is it to present things in a positive light and prevent the negativity which, incidentally, the writer says is threatening the success of the city?
“One theory of mine is that many people are hurting. And, when you’re hurting, you resent others who are succeeding. So, you root for them to fail and assist in the process by tearing them down.”
Really? Who, truly, roots for people to fail? That’s not the America I know. The article has more than an air of desperation – the good old ’attack is the best form of defense’ thing.
Read the article here.
UPDATE APRIL 23rd.
I had to chuckle. I study our website statistics a lot, as all webmasters should, of course And today, I saw that we have just had a hit to this very page from a Google search. What search terms did the viewer type into Google to find this page? “Slogans for air conditioning”.