1Bacon and eggs
Bacon and eggs were not considered breakfast foods until the 1920s when Sigmund Freud's nephew was hired by a packing company to create a marketing campaign to increase bacon sales.
When Coke marketed their Dasani brand of water in the UK in 2004 it was a PR disaster because they referred to it as "bottled spunk" and used the slogan "can't live without spunk" not realizing "spunk" was a slang word for semen in UK.
The recommendation to see a dentist every 6 months was not based on any evidence. It just stuck after a 1930s Pepsodent ad campaign.
Because of a surplus of whole milk and milk fat, the USDA has worked with restaurants to expand their menus with cheese-laden products, including paying for a $12 million marketing campaign for Domino's to develop a new line of pizzas with 40% more cheese.
A Listerine mouthwash ad from the 1920s coined the phrase, "Often a bridesmaid but never a bride" to describe women with bad breath.
6Share a Coke
The “Share a Coke” campaign where Coca-Cola replaced its name on bottles with people’s first names, increased Coca-Cola’s U.S. sales by more than 2% and, in doing so, helped reverse more than 10 years of decline in Coke consumption in the U.S.
For April Fools Day in 1998, Burger King took out a full-page ad in USA Today introducing a Whopper designed especially for lefties. The new burger would contain the same ingredients as the original but rotated 180°. Thousands of customers swarmed BK restaurants requesting the "lefty" Whopper.
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8Taco Liberty Bell
On 1st April 1996, Taco Bell spent $300,000 on ads claiming that they purchased the Liberty Bell and named it Taco Liberty Bell, and achieved $25 million in free publicity. The White House Press Secretary got on the joke, saying the Lincoln Memorial was turned by Ford into Lincoln-Mercury Memorial.
In 2018, Ikea ran a print advert which had a very unique technology. It gave 50% discounts, if you urinated on it and were found to be pregnant, for a crib.
Burger King launched a $40 million ad campaign in November 1985 called "Where's Herb?" The idea was to find a character named Herb who'd never been to BK. Other chains pointed out that if Herb wasn't at BK, it meant he probably liked other chains' burgers more. Burger King’s profits fell by 40% in 1986.