Before we get into our choices for the Top 10 Advertising Jingles of all time, it’s good to understand what makes a jingle so memorable. How do they work and are they even an effective tool when trying to gain brand recognition? They certainly are. In fact – advertising jingles are one of the most powerful and effective advertising tools that can be used in radio and television to this day. Research shows that the memory retention of a radio or TV commercial that incorporates a jingle, is recalled 10 times faster than that of an ad that just relies on spoken word and a generic music bed.
Why Do Jingles Work So Well?
We recall audible-hooks far more accurately than we do visual-hooks. It’s just the way our brains are wired. Researchers actually have a name for this – they call it ‘Song-Struck-Syndrome’ or ‘Earworms.’ These are typically 15 – 30 second snippets of melody and music that make their way into our brain and never seem to leave. Studies also show that, the shorter and simpler the melody, the more likely it is to stick. This is why it’s typically advertising jingles and top 40 pop songs that are the most effective at getting stuck in our heads. Give a listen to our library of catchy advertising jingles and tell us which one gets stuck in your head the most.
Here’s The Science Behind It.
In 1974, Alan Baddely and Graham Hitch discovered what is now referred to as the phonological loop. This process consists of the phonological store (your ‘inner ear’) remembering sounds in chronological order and then the articulatory rehearsal system (your ‘inner voice’) repeating those sounds in order to retain them. This incredible brain function is vital to children when developing speech and vocabulary as well as adults when learning new languages.
So now that you know how a catchy advertising jingle gets stuck in your head, let’s take a look at some of the most memorable jingles that we’ve come to know and love in the great big world of advertising.
Below you will find our candidates for the Top 10 Advertising Jingles of all time.
Now remember, this is only our opinion (and we welcome your opinion in the comment section below) – but we did put some effort into the process and here is the criteria we followed when making our selection:
- Is the jingle instantaneously recognizable?
- Did the jingle achieve national or international success?
- Did the jingle have an effect on pop culture?
- Has the jingle remained in use, even if updated to reflect a more modern musical style?
So without further adieu …. (drum roll) …. the Top 10 Advertising Jingles Of All Time.
10. Dr. Pepper: “Wouldn’t You Like to Be a Pepper Too?”
This jingle-meets-commercial-meets-music-ensemble debuted in the late 70’s and features David Naughton who was well known for his hit single “Makin It.”
9. Wrigley’s Doublemint Gum: “Double Your Pleasure, Double Your Fun.”
This popular jingle debuted in the late 80’s and was the centrepiece to all of those Wrigley’s commercials staring multiple sets of twins. They continued using it into the 90’s but have recently revamped the jingle with R&B hip-hop artist Chris Brown.
8. Juicy Fruit: “ The Taste Is Gonna Move Ya.”
Here’s another jingle from the 80’s that has a guaranteed nostalgia attached to it. Over the years, Juicy Fruit has recorded the jingle with various singers and a variety of different opening lyrics, all depending on the seasonal campaign. It still gets airtime to this day with the latest rendition recorded by Country star Julianne Hough.
7. Chili’s “I Want My Baby Back Baby Back Baby Back Ribs.”
This jingle is one of the most current picks on our list. Yes it’s catchy, but the main reason it got selected was because of it’s relevance in today’s pop culture. NSYNC performed it. The blockbuster “Austin Powers” referenced it, the hit TV shows “Scrubs” and “The Office” used it, not to mention countless stand up comedians who have parodied the jingle, all helping to make it world renown.
6. Alka-Seltzer: “Plop Plop Fizz Fizz – Oh What A Relief It Is.”
Written in the early 50’s, the “plop plop fiz fiz jingle by Alka-Seltzer is the oldest on our list (one of the reasons it made it to top 5). Even though it was written in the 50’s it never actually hit the airwaves until the mid 70’s. A few years after it’s debut, Sammy Davis Jr. gave the jingle his own touch with a ‘rock’ and a ‘big band’ version. In 2006 Alka-Seltzer launched a contest to recreate this iconic jingle and they debuted the winning jingle during the 2007 Super Bowl.
5. Kit Kat: “Give Me A Break.”
This classic jingle was written in the mid 80’s by Ken Shuldman and Michael Levine for the DDB Advertising Agency. The client (Kit Kat) certainly got their money’s worth because this particular jingle was named one of the most recognizable ‘earworms’ according to a study done by the University of Cincinnati. Pop Country star Carrie Underwood even did a version of it that aired in 2005.
4. Band-Aid “ I Am Stuck On Band-Aid Brand Cause Band-Aid’s Stuck On Me.”
Barry Manilow wrote this infectious jingle so the credit goes entirely to him. It’s cute, it’s catchy and it’s still to this day, the cornerstone to all Band-Aid commercials. That makes it one of the longest standing advertising jingles to ever be used by one company.
3. Oscar Mayer: “My Bologna Has A First Name…” and “If I Were An Oscar Mayer Weiner.”
Oscar Mayer clinches our number two spot simply because they not only have one extremely catchy jingle – but two! The original Oscar Mayer Weiner jingle aired in 1965 and to date, you can still find people marching around singing “oh I’d love to be an Oscar Mayer Weiner ….” That’s over 50 years of solid advertising from one jingle. The second jingle was produced for the purpose of advertising their line of Bologna lunch meat. The reason we feel this jingle is so successful is because they’ve been getting people to sing/spell the name of their company for 40 years anytime some mentions the word Bologna. It too has become one of the longest running commercials in North America. Now that’s a powerful jingle.
Original 1965 Jingle
Revamped 1974 Jingle
2. Coca-Cola: “I’d Like to Buy The World A Coke.”
This is it! The creativeready.com number one pick! Let me tell you why. First, as soon as you read the words, “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” you start to sing the melody of the song in your head. Notice I said song, not jingle? That’s right this was a best selling hit song (minus the coke references). Coke has revisited this hit from time to time and even did a revised version for Coke Classic in 2009.
Original Coca Cola “I’d Like to Buy The World A Coke”
1. McDonalds: “I’m Lovin’ it!”
Is it any surprise that this fast food titan came in at our number one spot? It just makes sense that your jingles are the most popular when you yourself are the 4th largest advertiser in North America. With at least 3 commonly known and highly advertised jingles in their catalog (“You Deserve A Break Today” – “The Big-Mac Song” and “I’m Lovin’ It”) – McDonalds continues to dominate the airwaves with their song based advertising initiatives. Although we could have picked any one of those three jingles mentioned above – we feel the “I’m Lovin’ It” jingle takes the prize. This jingle staple is so well known that McDonalds has pretty much stopped using the lyrics and now just relies on the musical melody that follows the slogan – “ba-da-da-da-da” .… now that’s effective!
Pop Quiz: What famous pop star is the one singing the hook in this particular commercial? Here’s a hint … they actually make a brief cameo in this video. (leave your answer in the comment section below)