Slogan

A few weeks ago I was raving about how needless it is for companies that don’t need logos having logos. For instance, a movie company needs a logo because there’s a certain expectation associated with those companies; I’ll watch pretty much anything by Imagine Entertainment but outright refuse to watch a movie produced by Flower Films. However, some things, things where choice doesn’t matter – the post office, a charity, a hospital – don’t need a logo; they’re just wasting money on things that don’t matter instead of sending mail, helping people, or fixing people. I believe the same thing about slogans.

Ron Howard: Good

Drew Barrymore: Bad.

The slogan of Sparrow Hospital, the hospital I spent several days at when Lemon was born, has a new slogan. It used to be something like, “We’re here when you need us most,” which is a pretty ok slogan for a hospital. It basically states what the hospital does – stays in one spot and helps when you ask – but it says it in such a way that it sounds almost motherly. It’s comforting.

Their new one is borderline retarded: “Inspired by excellence.” What does that even mean? I don’t want to go to a hospital that’s inspired by excellence; I want to go to a hospital that is excellent. I’m inspired by sunsets, it doesn’t mean that I want to be a sunset or to create work that one would describe as “sunset-like.” All “inspired by excellence” means is that the hospital can recognize excellence and is inspired to possibly recreate such work. It doesn’t mean that they’re any good at their job. Any company could have this slogan: “Your local post office: inspired by excellence” or “Mongolian BBQ: inspired by excellence” or “ShitBox Portable Outhouses: inspired by excellence.” It doesn’t mean anything.

It’s almost like they put those words in a slogan generator. Like I did here:

  • When you say Excellence, you’ve said it all.
  • Excellence. Integrity. Inspiration.
  • Inspired for life.
  • Excellence wanted.
  • Inspiration comes standard.

See? Any of those can be used for virtually any business (actually, I think that last one was used in a Chrysler commercial).

Here’s what I want from a hospital: fix it. Whatever’s wrong with me, fix it and do it as pain-free and as cheaply as possible. I don’t want a thousand tests and I don’t want to be stuck in a bed for weeks on end. I want to go back to the way things were before I came to you, and your slogan should say exactly that. Here’s a good one for you: Sparrow Hospital: We’ll make you better.”

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