I don’t know about yours, but my neighborhood is suddenly covered in ads for Grape-Nuts. The marketing slant is one of bold refusals of common euphemisms and descriptions that have found their way into our vernacular. A billboard near my house reads, “I hope we can still be friends,” which is crossed out with red ink with “goodbye,” scrawled below. In the bottom right is a picture of a box of Grape-Nuts and the tagline, “It is what it is. NoGrapesNoNuts.com”. But what exactly does breakfast cereal have to do with the sugar-coating of the break up with my ex-boyfriend?
The product branding for the cereal was coined so long ago no one is quite sure where it came from. One thing is certain: since its creation in 1897, the product has never contained grapes or nuts, as the name would suggest. Over a hundred years later the company has decided to capitalize on this discrepancy. The domain name says it all: NoGrapesNoNutscom. And, as the amusing billboards would like you to believe, no bulls#@*. Just the whole grains implied by the image of a branch of wheat laid across the front of the box.
In this time of hyperbole and euphemism, these ads push a style of marketing that speaks to we folks who are tired of all the fluff and positive spin. Kudos to you, Post. We at Catchword salute you.
Just goes to show you: sometimes, even weird product names can succeed (if you spend enough on the ad campaign, that is)