Great corporate weasel words: When in doubt blame ED or Elvis

  1. Bob Dole's favorite malady, erectile dysfunction, is to blame for GM getting all limp. At least that's how I interprest the fact that GM decided to announce that it has to spend $17M a year on Viagra, Cialis and other erectile dysfunction drugs. While the company does cop to the fact that's a small fraction of GM's overall health care costs ($5B last year) "company executives often use the example to illustrate what they said are out-of-control health care costs," according to the AP. Best line in the story: "Ford Motor Co. declined to say how much it spends on erectile dysfunction drugs, and a spokesman for DaimlerChrysler AG's Chrysler Group could not provide figures." You can blame the ED or you can blame the fact that you've made a lot of crappy cars. You decide.
  2. elvisThe King is blamed, long live the King. Execs as the UK bakery Kingsmill would like us to believe that an ad campaign — featuring Elvis Presley, no less — is why they lost a third of their market share. The campaign was a tongue-in-cheek one built around the fact that on his one brief stop in the UK, Elvis ate some the company's bread and therefore the bread is made "By Appointment To The King." Kinda clever actually. Best line of the story: "Analysts said that Kingsmill had lost about a third of its market share to Hovis and Warburtons because of the advert and production issues." AND: "The problems come after the loss of [parent company] Allied’s deal to supply Asda with own-label bread after a dispute with the supermarket group." While "critics" blasted the ads as some sort of sacrilegious thing, I think the only way a campaign could kill a third of your market share is if it made joking reference to Hitler. After all, Starbucks was recently endorsed by Chinese dictator, er, president Hu Jintao and it doesn't seem to have hurt them.

5 thoughts on “Great corporate weasel words: When in doubt blame ED or Elvis

  1. Maybe Starbucks should put some tweaked Mao quotes on their paper (tiger) cups:

    “What really counts in the world is caffeination, and the Communist Party is most particular about being caffeinated.”

    “An army without non-fat grande caramel lattes is a dull-witted army, and a dull-witted army cannot defeat the enemy.”

    Or Deng Xiaoping: “To get a venti espresso is glorious.”

    So who can Dunkin’ Donuts use as an endorser? Qadhafi has some quotable gems in his green book that Dunkin’ could slap on their new smoothies.

  2. I’m thinking Dunkin Donuts should use slogans from one or both of it’s biggest supporters. How about:

    “Half measures availed us nothing. Make mine a Grande please.”

    or maybe

    “You have the right to remain silent but it will be hard to order at the drive through”.

  3. Thanks, Mr. Collateral Damage! I don’t plan on taking over CD – but that would be a good start to becoming the Henry Kravis of the blogosphere.

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