Jingles, Spokespeople, and Mascots (Oh My!)

The history of jingles, spokespeople, and mascots is quite fascinating. Some are iconic and paved the paths for decades-long successes, while others’ successes were as short as the jingle themselves. We all have our favorites, and we could discuss them for hours. But do these marketing tools still have a place in today’s “create your own success” landscape, or have they found a permanent place in the memories of each generation they touched?

The popularity of brand mascots dates back to the early 19th century with familiar faces such as the Jolly Green Giant or the Snap, Crackle, and Pop brothers. Mascots give companies a friendly, recognizable face that improves brand recognition and makes people feel they are making the right choice for themselves and their families. The influential mascot list is too large to point them all out; however, around the 2000s, the use of cartoonish-type mascots started its descent into marketing history. Fast forward a couple of decades, and their use is almost obsolete due to the changes in the marketplace. However, Tony the Tiger will always equal a Grrrreat breakfast, and the Pillsbury Doughboy’s poppin’ fresh crescent rolls will live forever.

There is truth in the statement that a good song never dies as we all have that 30-second jingle living rent-free in our brains…forever. We will bet if you hear:

“🎶 Give me a break, give me a break,” you will finish the jingle with, “Break me off a piece of that Kit-Kat bar.”


“🎶Mr. Clean. Mr. Clean,”  you will think of the Magic Eraser product.

Coke’s “🎶 I’d like to buy the world a Coke” in the ’80s  and Gatorade’s “🎶I want to be like Mike” in the ’90s led the way for hit songs and celebrity endorsements to promote products. But, oh, how marketing has changed in the 21st century. Limited attention spans, fast forward, and people’s ability to only connect with a brand if they choose to have changed the effectiveness of jingles as a marketing tool.

Spokespeople are synonymous with celebrities, athletes, and now influencers. Some spokespeople are wildly successful, and some have placed products or brands in the graveyard. Regardless, the use of spokespeople has remained timeless as consumers want to create connections with these people, be seen wearing the same clothes, eating the same foods, and driving the same cars.

We live in a world with 24/7 access to whatever consumers want to be a part of. Recently, brands have been using retro packaging and jingles to bring adults back to their childhoods, encouraging them to purchase a product or at least tell the “I remember when I was a kid” story. Marketing has always been about creating a feeling or connection, and the marketing gurus agree that that part of the story will never change, just how it is being delivered.

Need a marketing refresh, or are you looking to go retro? Contact YCS Marketing. We are your local gurus.

Check us out at ycsmarketing.com