Can You Name the Brand by Its Tagline?

Zoe Samuel

Image: Getty Images via Zsolt Hlinka

About This Quiz

In a just world, a good product would not need a great tagline to sell itself. It would simply fly off the shelves by virtue of its superior quality, environmental credentials, and highly ethical and equitable treatment of its workforce. In a just world, customers would be interested in whether the product does what it says, whether it's healthy and high quality, and whether it is value for money. Secondary concerns would involve the sustainability of the product's manufacturing process and whether or not it was made in a place with adequate workers' rights protections, at a company that prizes proper non-discriminatory hiring practices.

We do not live in a just world. We live in a world full of advertising. That means that a mediocre or even a kind of terrible product with a great marketing effort behind it can soar to incredible heights just by the power of marketing. The right ad campaign can elevate a watery, indifferent beer from undrinkable to the must-have brew of the college kegel. It can make a boxy and not very safe car the fashion statement of its decade. Of course, it can also bring our attention to a great product we didn't know about or attach warm fuzzies and a sense of community or a childhood memory to something that was otherwise just a meaningless snack. That is the magic of advertising, a power that can be used for good or evil depending on who wields it.

How many of the advertisers' earworms are still in your noggin? Let's find out!

Which brand used the tagline "Waaaaassssssuuuuup?"

This was Budweiser's hugely succcessful 1990's ad campaign. It has now been parodied so much that it is basically beyond parody.

Which brand called itself "The happiest place on earth?"

Disney World calls itself this, and it's not far off. Their various parks are indeed a very happy (albeit super expensive) place for visitors of all ages.

Who asked America if we "Got Milk?"

This incredibly successful campaign featured celebrities with a milk mustache. It managed to make a rather dull and nonspecific product really rather cool.

Which company noted that, "There are some things money can't buy; for everything else, there's ____"?

MasterCard's "priceless" campaign has been around for 20 years now. It's one of the first times a financial company managed to show that it had a soul, hence its success.

Which hearty soup informed us the product is, "M’m! M’m! Good!"?

This slogan has been around for a long time. Campbell's prides its brand on keeping it simple, hence the food's simple, as is the copy.

What brand offers "The breakfast of champions"?

Wheaties introduced this campaign playing on the idea of a breakfast that sets you up to win. They did not invent the phrase; they just re-purposed it.

Who says they are the ones to deliver, "When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight"?

FedEx technically uses the slogan "we live to deliver" these days. However, this long and unwieldy older slogan was very effective, and far more people probably remember it.

Which car company promises "The Ultimate Driving Machine"?

BMW is a German car brand that used to be very famous for their superior hydraulic steering system. The name stands for Bayerische Motoren Werke, founded in 1916.

Which makeup brand suggests, "Maybe she's born with it; maybe it's ____"?

Maybelline introduced this incredibly effective tagline in 1991. Almost everyone knows the tag, even if they don't know the company.

Which farming machinery brand informs us that, "Nothing runs like a ____"?

John Deere is probably the biggest name in farming, as far as machinery goes. They sell tractors, hoes, harvesters, etc.

Which chip brand is sure that "Once you pop, you can't stop!"

Pringles gain their distinctive shape from the fact that they aren't technically a potato chip. Most chips are made by cutting potatoes. Pringles are made by smashing together a slurry of wheat, rice, corn, and potato then shaping it into the distinctive Pringle form.

Which cereal brand has the onomatopoeia "Snap! Crackle! Pop!" for a tagline?

This is a very popular Kellogg's rice cereal. Curiously, the founder of Kellogg's was actually a religious zealot whose first invention, Cornflakes, was designed to help prevent masturbation. It's not clear how he thought that eating a hearty breakfast helped with this, but he did.

Which candy bar exhorts you to, "Have a break. Have a ___"?

Kit-Kat was created by Rowntrees, the most ethical and socially aware company ever to make chocolate (they were Quakers and had a strong moral compass). They are now made by Nestle, who are perhaps not so easily described in that way.

Which hardy watch brand declared, "It takes a licking and keeps on ticking"?

Timex didn't want to compete with Rolex. They wanted you to know that if you beat the holy heck out of their watch, it wouldn't break.

Which beer "refreshes the parts other beers cannot reach"?

This Dutch beer claims they can refresh the parts other beers cannot reach. They never let on which parts they mean, though.

What food, "Tastes so good cats ask for it by name"?

Meow Mix realized that all people really want from a cat product advertisement is to see cute cats. They delivered, by making the cats the spokes-people for the brand.

Which credit card advised, "Don’t leave home without it"?

American Express began life in 1850 as a merger of mail companies owned by Henry Wells, William Fargo, and John Warren Butterfield. Nowadays it is one of the four biggest credit cards on the planet.

Which small hard candy-covered chocolate "melts in your mouth, not in your hand"?

M&Ms had this slogan at the outset. It may be because they were invented in 1941, a time when air conditioning was a luxury not many could afford.

What company might you use, "When you care enough to send the very best"?

Hallmark is the premier American greeting card company. It's not actually the very best, but it's certainly decent value for money.

Who assures you that with their products, you'll be saying, "That was easy"?

Staples sells everything you need to make your office work. They love offices. Indeed, they once got in a fight with the owner of the domain office.com, who refused to sell until they made him a seven-figure offer.

What credit card company likes to ask you, "What’s in your wallet?"?

Capital One has been trying to catch up to the big boys: Visa, MasterCard, and Amex. They have enlisted a number of very major stars to ask people what they have in their wallets.

Which insurance company wants you to know that, "Fifteen minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance"?

Geico runs many ad campaigns, each slightly more annoying than the last. Though few people like their ads, everyone remembers them, which means they work!

Which beauty brand tells you to buy it, "Because you're worth it"?

L'Oreal is a French brand that sells the idea that pampering yourself is about self-worth, not about looking good for others. This is understandably a popular angle, especially in the USA.

What razor claims it is, "The best a man can get"?

This slogan was introduced in a hilariously over-produced ad with a sung jingle. It was quite the earworm and nobody could forget it!

Which company went all over America asking, "Can You Hear Me Now? Good"?

Verizon is one of the big daddies of the communications industry in the USA. They had a huge success with an ad campaign in which a friendly everyman supposedly waked all over America checking whether people could hear him.

Who taught us that "A Diamond Is Forever"?

De Beers paid a lot of money to Hollywood stars to popularize the idea that diamonds are the ultimate jewel. Before that, any valuable gem was considered great for an engagement ring or a superior necklace.

Who is, "The Quicker Picker Upper"?

Bounty is a paper towel brand that mainly targets the soccer mom demographic. It promises that it will save time, something its time-starved target demo wants to hear.

Who assures us that, "Like a Good Neighbor, ____ is There"?

State Farm promises to show up "like a good neighbor" when a crisis hits. Their jingle saying as much was written by none other than Barry Manilow in 1971.

What organization recruits you with the words, "The Few. The Proud. The ____"?

The Marines sometimes need to recruit, and this is how they do it. They aren't trying to claim there are a lot of them; the point is that hardly anyone is good enough to get in, but if you are, you must be the best.

What fast food restaurant proudly declares, "I'm Lovin' It"?

McDonald's is by far the biggest fast-food chain on the planet. They claim to have served over 99 billion meals since their founding in 1955 in Illinois.

Who told us that "America Runs on _____"?

Dunkin' is all about appealing to the salt-of-the-earth worker. Interestingly, brand observers show that even when a Starbucks and a Dunkin's are next door and offer coffee of equal quality for the same price, they don't get the same customers. People feel very strongly about which one they like!

What rather boring product sensibly assures us that "It Does Exactly What It Says on the Tin"?

Ronseal's advertising is incredibly boring on purpose. The product does what it says on the tin. If it says it will stain your wooden deck and make it weather resistant for five years, that's what it does. This is the marketing of a brand who knows its customer.

Which entertainment company told us, "It's not TV, it's ____"?

HBO launched this slogan in 1996 when the fact that they weren't regular TV was truly a distinguishing feature. These days, with streaming and internet, it's actually a little quaint.

Which brand claims it produces, "Probably the best lager in the world"?

This brand's advertising is designed to appeal to a benevolent lad. It's all about claiming to be good but putting on a caveat that makes clear they're not too big for their boots.

Which city's tourism board claimed that, "What happens here, stays here"?

They said this in 2002 before social media took off. Clearly, these days, it's not at all true - and it probably wasn't then.

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