Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Top 10 Marketing Phrases With No Meaning at All

By Mar 14, 2024

10. Corinthian Leather is Just Leather

Is there a scent that compares to that of a new car? It’s difficult to even define. Perhaps a small amount of the production-used paint, deodorizers, and cleaners; perhaps even that rich, Corinthian leather.

Mmm, are you sensing it already? Silky, flexible, and opulent? Yes, Corinthian leather is the best upholstery available for your car, and with good reason. Is that not from Corinth? The ancient Greek city that was once overrun by the Romans and is now home to less than 40,000 people? They most likely have extensive leather knowledge.

Since Corinthian leather isn’t a thing, in actuality, they are unrelated to one another. Ad executives for Ricardo Montalban made it up. Yes, Star Trek’s Khan.

According to the account, Montalban was performing in the play Don Juan when he arrived in Detroit, and Chrysler’s advertising agency noticed him. Because the name Cordoba sounded Spanish and matched Montalban’s seductive aura, the executives, who adored him, wanted him to promote it.

Because Corinthian leather sounded so damned sexy in his accent, they managed to get him to talk about it. Far more awesome than “leather” on its own. It wasn’t anything spectacular; it was simply cheap leather, but because of the way it sounded, people wanted to buy it.

9. There’s No Such Thing as Sushi Grade Fish

Sushi is a staple food for about five million Americans, making it reasonable to claim that it’s the most popular Japanese dish in the country. In spite of the fact that mastering it in Japan might take years, even over a decade, some people are so enamoured of it that they attempt to do it themselves.

When creating sushi, one of the things people worry about is the quality of the fish. You need fish fit for sushi, right? Sushi grade fish can be purchased at markets, although it’s uncommon for them to inform you that the fish is meaningless.

Understanding this becomes a little challenging because, in the United States, the FDA has regulations about raw fish. According to their Parasite Destruction Promise, a raw product needs to be “frozen and stored at a temperature of -20°C (-4°F) or below for a minimum of 168 hours (7 days)” before it can be served. By doing that, you may be confident that the fish has no parasites on you. Is that sushi grade, though? No.

In North America, there is no official regulation pertaining to the word “sushi grade.” Vendors that fulfil the FDA criteria may use it, but the FDA has no control over its use, therefore anyone can claim that any fish meets the sushi grade standards without any justification.

When restaurants tried to offer raw fish in the early 2000s, they utilised the term “sushi-grade” as a marketing tool to persuade them to sell more than only tuna. It was a pleasant sounding official term that persuaded them to broaden their perspectives.

8. Superfruit Is Just a Vague Marketing Term

Everyone wants to sell you the next big thing and a buzz term that showed up a few years back was “superfood.” This has been narrowed down in some circles as “superfruit.” Things like pomegranate, acai, Goji berries and even blueberries have been called superfruits, mostly because they have antioxidants or whatever other nutrient someone is trying to push as a miracle.

In reality, a superfruit is a fruit. It may be a good fruit and it’s great if you love it and want to eat it, but it’s no “better” than other fruits. That’s kind of the rub with a word like “super,” it doesn’t have a lot of objective meaning

The European Union banned the label “superfood” back in 2007 unless manufacturers could provide evidence of how that item was good for your health. . 

7. All Salt Is Sea Salt 

When you went to the supermarket to buy salt in the past, you might see shakers and boxes of iodized salt along with possibly some coarse or kosher salt. You may now find black salt, grey salt, pink salt, Celtic salt, Atlantic sea salt, and perhaps a few dozen other varieties when you visit.

Sea salt is quite popular, particularly when promoting other goods. Take sea salt chips or pretzels dipped in coarse sea salt. It must be good since it originated in the water! All salt is sea salt, with the exception of extremely literal salt.

It originated from the water at some point, even if the ocean it came from dried up hundreds or thousands of years ago. It may contain a small amount of a few additional random, non-salt minerals to change the colour, but other than that, it is chemically identical to all other salt.

Though it’s all the same in the end, modern marketing employs phrases like “sea salt” to make it look distinct from “regular” salt and therefore higher quality or more healthy.

6. Angus Is Just a Breed of Cattle and Doesn’t Imply Quality

People take their beef seriously, therefore a restaurant offering steaks or burgers won’t merely put beef on the menu in an attempt to sell you one. They will entice you with stories about how delicious that beef is. It will be USDA Prime meat and, for the truly upscale, possibly certified Angus steak. That must be beneficial. It has certification! It was awarded a certificate!

What then distinguishes certified Angus beef? It must originate from an Angus cow, therefore. Similar to Guernsey or Holstein, Angus is a breed of cow. They are the black ones, and a cow must be primarily black in order to be classified as an Angus. The meat then needs to meet certain requirements, such as muscle thickness, marbling and fat content, in order to be labelled as Angus beef.

Since Angus beef is just beef, you probably won’t taste a difference between it and any other beef of the same quality in terms of flavour. It will be nearly the same if the fat content is the same. The Angus designation, typically applied to beef to elevate its perceived quality, flavour, or overall superiority over “regular” beef, is merely a marketing gimmick.

The main distinction is between Angus and Certified Angus. At the very least, an inspection is performed on the certified meat to guarantee the best possible marbling, which influences flavour. Once more, the flavour of the beef will be the same even if it came from a different breed and had the same thickness, fat marbling, etc.

Any grade of Angus beef may be sold if the seller makes no certification claims about it. This is how fast food chains prepare their Angus burgers, and as a result, you pay extra for beef that isn’t any better than what is typically offered on the menu.

5. Portobello, Cremini and Button Mushrooms Are All the Same

Not everyone enjoys mushrooms but plenty of people do and the mushroom industry is worth over $50 billion per year. Matsutake mushrooms can cost as much as $2000 per pound, so it’s easy to see where all that cash is coming from. 

Marketing plays a big part in selling mushrooms and nowhere is that more apparent than in the world of portobello mushrooms. For those of us who can’t shell of a few grand for matsutakes or truffles, the portobello is the more accessible fancy mushroom. You’ll see them on menus when a restaurant wants to elevate a dish above just boring old mushrooms. Or at least trick you into thinking that.

In reality, there’s no such thing as a portobello mushroom. Obviously it’s an actual mushroom, but it’s no different from those little white button mushrooms you see on the shelf of every grocery store in North America and that’s because they’re exactly the same mushroom.

Little white button mushrooms turn brown as they age. At a certain point they will be marketed as cremini mushrooms, probably right next to their pale, younger selves on the shelf. But when they grow big enough, they get upgraded to portobello. All three mushrooms are the same fungus, just at different stages in its lifespan. Marketing makes it seem like you’re getting something fancier or higher quality. 

4. No Tears Shampoo for Kids Didn’t Have a Specific Meaning

Ever open your eyes in the shower with a headful of shampoo and instantly regret it as the lather oozes into your eyes and burns into your skull? Good thing they invented tear-free shampoo so you can lather your eyes until the cows come home. Except that’s not really how it works and the concept of “no tears” shampoo was more marketing than practical formula.

There was never a standard formula to govern what “no tears” means between brands of shampoo. Until 2013, Johnson and Johnson used to include formaldehyde in their no tears baby shampoo which you probably don’t need a degree in chemistry to know was a bad thing to put in your eyes. 

More confusing was that, for some years, there was a debate about whether no tears meant tears as in liquid that comes from your eyes or tears as in rips and breaks in your hair. There were commercials that made it clear the formula was a detangler so that, when you comb your hair later, it wouldn’t tear at your skull and cause you to cry. 

Johnson and Johnson, post formaldehyde, said their formula meant no tears as in no crying if shampoo gets in your eyes because their formula is made up of larger molecules designed to be less harsh to eyes and skin. All of this means the marketing term “no tears” meant very little to most people since it was widely open to interpretation. 

3. Cage Free and Free-Range Might Not Mean What You Think

Once upon a time you’d go to a store and buy eggs. Now you can pick Omega-3 eggs, organic eggs, cage-free eggs, free range eggs and a few dozen others. Some of those things mean something and others probably don’t mean what you think.

Cage-free eggs means that yes, the hen that laid them wasn’t in a cage. But it doesn’t mean she was outside, either. These hens are kept in rooms where they can roam and have unlimited access to food and water. However, the chickens often fight each other and poor ventilation means they may live in terrible air quality. 

Free-range is more insidious. It sounds like the hens can wander, but in reality it means they can “theoretically” wander free. The place they are kept must have a door to the outside, but there’s literally no rule that says a farmer has to open it, or that the access they have to outside is anything beyond a small cage. Look for “certified humane” if you want more assurance they had access to space outside. 

Another label, farm fresh, has no meaning at all. Chickens are all raised on farms so it’s just filler to say this. The farm could be in the fiery pits of hell and the eggs would still be farm fresh. Likewise, the word natural has no meaning because an egg, by definition, is natural.

2. Saltwater Taffy and Regular Taffy Are the Same Thing

Would you rather have taffy or saltwater taffy, assuming you’re a taffy person at all? There’s no reason to stress any longer as there’s no difference between the two. “Saltwater” taffy is just a thing to make it sound better. It’s not even made from saltwater.

According to legend, a taffy shop in Atlantic City was flooded one day thanks to some angry sea levels. A customer wanted to buy some taffy, and the owner joked all he had was salt water taffy, thanks to the flood. But he sold what he had, the customer liked it and boom, a new name was created.

1. The Term “Teenager” Was Invented in the 40s

It’s evident that everyone understands what a teenager is. However, that is only practical to utilise right now. In the 1930s, you would have received, at most, an eyebrow raise if you asked someone what a teenager was. This is due to the fact that the idea of teenagers was created in the 1940s as a marketing ploy.

Teens are now recognised as a stage of life, a transitional period between childhood and adulthood, since civilization shifted from an agrarian, rural origin to a metropolitan, manufactured one. Mandatory education was implemented in order to keep children from becoming coal miners or chimney sweepers, and as a result, a distinct “new” category of people—the teenager—emerged. a little disobedient, slightly more intelligent, and distinctive in their demands and desires.

Marketers worldwide must have been ecstatic to have developed a completely new, multicultural consumer base to sell to, since everyone aspires to be the next “big thing” for today’s youth. This group of consumers continues to be one of the most influential in pop culture and marketing.

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