10 Marketing Jingles That Make Your Ears Bleed

by Corey Eridon

Date

August 3, 2012 at 4:30 PM

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I have a feeling I'm gonna lose a lot of friends with this post.

While trying to enjoy some Boy Meets World this morning, a jingle (pre-coffee, granted) hit my ears that rattled me to the deepest, darkest recesses of my soul.

It's the first commercial jingle featured on this list, and simply put, it annoys the bajeezus out of me. But it's certainly not the only one. And I know it's not just me that can't get these frustratingly catchy songs out of my head, because when I asked around the office for the commercial jingles that drive people nuts, the tunes rattled off their tongues like lightning.

So if you'd like to start your weekend with a song in your heart and a spring in your step, this is the post for you -- the only catch is you won't be able to forget said song 'til around midday Monday. Here are the top 10 commercial jingles we just can't stop singing ... but desperately wish we could. Also, I'm sorry.

10 Commercial Jingles You Wish You Never Heard

1) Dixie Ultra (Ya, Ya!)

Here's my beef with this jingle that put a damper on my typical 90s-adolescent-drama morning routine. The lyrics devolve into non-words in order to maintain a rhyme scheme for the phrase "Dixie Ultra handles your messiest." Also, it sounds like she's trying to sing the entire song in one breath ... that she's rapidly running out of by the end of the song. When the jingle wraps up, it's at a pitch only a dog could hear, using words no human could understand. Dixie Ultra handles my "butteriest?" My "twirliest?" ... My what? Listen if you dare.

2) JG Wentworth 877-CASH-NOW!!!

It can't be a good sign when your jingle needs subtitles. First of all, it's opera. I'm wicked classy and all, but come on ... opera? In a commercial? I guess the problem is that it's not good opera. It's more akin to some kids putting on an opera at school, mocking in no unsubtle terms the melodrama they perceive as characteristic of the performances. If it's not your own kids (when they're your kids, it's adorable) you'll sit through and watch, wriggle uncomfortably at the painful performance, and wonder when it'll finally be over.

3) Hefty Hefty Hefty

Whoever wrote this jingle has got to be laughing all the way to the bank. The lyrics are as follows:

Stinky
Hefty
Stinky
Hefty
Stinky? Stinky.
Hefty Hefty Hefty
Stinky Stinky Stinky
Hefty Hefty Hefty

This is not a joke. Oh, and it's all backed by creepy carnival music. Enjoy.

4) Sea Bond Denture Adhesive

The lyrics of this jingle combined with the tone of the singers' voices is just plain bizarre. It seems like they're trying to sound like children -- which is made far stranger when you realize they're selling a denture adhesive product. "Bye bye yuckiness. So long ooziness. I thought I was gonna cry." You're adults. That's just plain weird. And if you listen to it, it's weird-sounding, too.

5) The FreeCreditReport.com Band

The FreeCreditReport.com band had a lot of fans. Way more than they have today, though. Those original commercials were actually pretty cool! Unfortunately, they're kind of beating a dead horse with this thing, and the music is starting to be ... well ... a bit of a reach. In fact, this "rap" with the terrible techno/pop/electronica beat is just plain obnoxious.

6) Nationwide ... They're On Your Side

This jingle is a riff on their usual "Nationwide is on your side" tune. That one isn't half bad; it's short, straightforward, and when they have a nice voice singing it, it doesn't make your ears bleed. Thing is, this is a weird riff on it in their attempt to display their commitment to personalized service. It turns into "NationPam is on your ... Sam," which just plain doesn't work (HubSpot's blog manager, Pam particularly hates this one). We're used to singing your jingle the other way. Now we have this annoying, unresolved ending in our heads. Can't you just go back to the original?

7) Arby's. It's Good Mood Food.

If one were to type out the way this jingle sounds, I imagine it would look like this:

Arby's. IT'S GOOD MOOD FOOD!

And then imagine an angsty pre-teen is singing it. Or maybe a wailing calf. Talk about ears bleeding.

8) NAPA Know How

I can't put my finger on why this country-esque tune is so cringe-inducing -- maybe it's because the actor seems like he's trying so hard to make the song engaging. But frankly, every time this song comes on, it's that last part of the jingle, the repetition of "NAPA Know How," that consistently grinds my gears. Have a listen.

9) Denny's Nanerpuss

It took all the courage I could muster to even watch this commercial again to write this blog post. This jingle just plain gives me the willies. It's a weird combination between infantile and creepy. First of all, the name is weird. Nanerpuss. Blech.

Then you have to consider that Nanerpuss is a singing banana, which kind of makes it like a creepy puppet ... I guess that's where the childish angle comes in. It's made worse by the fact that it's singing a song that introduces who he is, and what he does, which makes it sound like one of those educational songs puppets sing on children's shows. That'd be fine if it was the Snuggles bear or something, but it's a banana named Nanerpuss singing an annoying song on top of a stack of pancakes promoting a diner. Just ... watch. Or don't. I wouldn't blame you.

10) Get Connected (For Free!) With Education Connection

After Hefty, this has to be the most ridiculous set of lyrics used for a commercial jingle ... except that this is the exact opposite of what Hefty has done, yet it's somehow equally absurd. Basically, they've told the entire story of someone's complex decision to pursue higher education based on where she is in life at that point in time.

You see, she didn't get awesome grades in high school. And so now she's working an hourly job as a waitress ... where she makes money and everything but it's not really the kind she needs for the life she has in mind for herself. That's when she thought to herself, "Self, maybe if I got a degree I could get the salary I'm looking for."

Wait wait, I'm not done. That was all just the backstory.

So then, she went online, and started researching her education options -- well, not just her education options -- her "direction." You know, in life. That's when her life changed in the best way, because she was matched (For free!) with the right kind of college for her lifestyle. One that would let her take classes online at the times of day that work with her schedule. That kind of flexibility is key for her success.

This is all told in the jingle. That's uh ... that's quite the in-depth jingle.

Alright, it's time to reap what I've sown. Leave the jingles that drive you crazy in the comments. They'll be stuck in my head all weekend, I promise.

Image credit: Evil Erin

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