Thursday, October 09, 2014

The Disingenuousness of Cable Company Taglines, Ranked.

(TWC's previous trademarked slogan was so meaningless, it induced head pain. It's almost as if they were shifting the responsibility for their dreadful service onto "you". Their reps should have ended every angry, shouting unresolved customer call with "That's the power of you!")

Cable. The future doesn't look good for it. It is Ugly Rob Lowe. That's why America's top two cable companies want to merge and form BigMotherFuckingKissOurGoddamnAssCable, to hang onto their crumbling monopolies for a few more precious years.

But we're not here to get into that discussion. We're here for a class on taglines, slogans, or straplines, as the Brits call them. They are the advertising tie-off. When they're good, they leave you with a nice, if uneasy, feeling (Don't Leave Home Without, Just Do It, We're Number 2, We Try Harder, etc.).

None of these are good.

4. FiOS

A NETWORK AHEAD (no ™ or ®, so they're not married to it). 

The youngest (2005) of America's cable behemoths is 5th in the country, based on number of customers. Verizon only offers its fiber-optic network in about a third of the 50 states, mostly coastal ones.

This is, easily, the least disingenuousness of the cable slogans simply because it says nothing. They mean "ahead" of TWC and Comcast, of course, and also "ahead" as in "in the future". No unfulfilled customer benefits can be pulled from those three words. Sly but impersonal.

3. Cox Communications

your friend in the digital age®.

Cox, #3 in the US, is based in Georgia. They have over 6 million customers and over $9 billion in revenue annually. They are a private family business started and still run by a bunch of Cox's.

Cox has a mascot. His name is "Digi" (that's him, above). He is one of many "Digeez" (see this commercial). He is your "friend". Their previous mascot, who was also your friend, was "Digital Max" (2005-2008, RIP) who looked like Honda's Mr. Opportunity on steroids.

Cox's Facebook page has over 1 million "Likes" which they probably equate to "friends". In their tagline, "your friend" is bolded for emphasis so that when you read it you should say the first two words louder than the following four words.

Their headquarters is located at 1400 Lake Hearn Drive, near Atlanta. Next time you're in the area, stop in (tip: say your last name is Cox) and march right upstairs and say hi to one of the Cox's. I'm sure you'll be met as a long lost family friend.

ENJOY BETTER (also not ™ed or ®ed).

TWC uses this phrase to promote everything they offer, i.e.: Enjoy Sports Better, Enjoy Movies Better, Enjoy HBO Better, etc. But a tagline must stand on its own, and this one does not stand very true. It is such an American phrase, it could be our country's tagline. It doesn't say you will enjoy better, no, although TWC execs will tell you that's what it's supposed to mean. Bullshit. You should never have to tell me what your fucking tagline means, that's up to me. And to me, this is just a command, an order, ENJOY BETTER, asshole. (I am a TWC customer.)

1. xfinity (Comcast)

the future of awesome™

Number 1 with a bullet is xfiinity, what Comcast calls its cable service. It is outright guffaw-able in both its stupidity and disingenuousness. It reads like something Bill or Ted would say in one of their Excellent Adventures. It needs a "dude" added to it, plus a high-five or fistbumpexplosion. It is so over-the-top positive, it feels like a parody.

While we're here, how bout that word xfinity? Comcast (probably) paid a consulting firm high 6 figures to come up with that word. What does it mean? What it means to me is: X= an unknown, porn, or death (x-ed out eyes). So it means infinite unknown/porn/death. Let's go with Infinite Death.

ADDENDUM: What will the tagline of ComcastxfinityTimeWarnerCable be?
I think they should go with: ENJOY AWESOME BETTER®.


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