Airline Slogans vs. Political Slogans

Hard to believe that “Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too” was a successful campaign slogan but it did indeed help William Henry Harrison prevail over incumbent Martin Van Buren back in 1840. Modern sensibilities prefer zippier catchphrases – and most airline slogans qualify. But would they work for the current presidential candidates? Let’s try some on for size – an exercise in fun.

Airline Slogans for Politicians

  • JetBlue: “You Above All”

I think most voters would love this one. The question is, will the candidates actually put the voters first? (Be sure and read the end of this article for JetBlue’s solution to the wrong candidate winning).

The Crazy Guys who Run the Airlines

  • KLM: “Reliable”
  • Air Canada: “Defy obstacles”

These two slogans are nice enough but dull. Almost as boring as the slogans that the party standard bearers are currently using, such as “Forward” (President Barack Obama) and “Believe in America” (Gov. Romney). I think we can do better.

  • American: “Doing what we do best”
  • TWA: “You’re going to like us”

These two slogans are a little zippier, but there may be some bad karma here: TWA’s wish to be liked didn’t save it from bankruptcy in 2001, and let’s hope American isn’t doing what it does best, especially since the airline racked up an incredible 21,000 delayed flights in September alone.

A Brief History of Airlines in Trouble

  • Braniff: “When you’ve got it, flaunt it”

Madison Avenue execs loved this airline slogan, but it was ultimately seen as turning off customers by its very arrogance. Not for the politician who wants to be lovedĀ  – or to stay in office, either. Don’t forget, Braniff folded its wings forever back in 1982.

  • Virgin Atlantic: “More experience than our name suggests”
  • Continental: “We really move our tail for you”

Talk about politically incorrect. These slogans are only a tad more acceptable than the old National Airlines campaign, “I’m Cheryl. Fly Me.” Sure, Virgin’s Richard Branson is a fun and flamboyant guy, but it’s not a good look for a politician.

Former Pan Am Stewardess: Yes, We Wore Girdles

  • Pan Am: “Live today. Tomorrow will cost more”

Terrifying, for voters anyway. I think the candidates would be better off sticking with a previous White House occupant’s mantra: “It’s the economy, stupid.”

If Your Candidate Loses – One Airline’s Solution

Did you hear about the new contest from JetBlue? It’s for people who say, “If my candidate loses, I’m going to leave the country!” First prize: A ticket out of the country.

More from Rick Seaney:

If Presidential Candidates Adopted Airline Slogans

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Published: October 9, 2012