What a little endline can do

John Crowther, Banks Hoggins O'Shea/FCB, describes what happened to consumer response when a commercial's endline was changed

John Crowther

It is always dangerous to generalise, but if the endline has ever had a golden age, then it certainly is not now. There are few obvious contemporary equivalents to 'For mash, get Smash', 'Milk's gotta lotta bottle' or even 'If only everything in life was as reliable as a VW' – lines which were not just there to decorate an end-frame, but which delivered much of the punch of a campaign. Talk to creatives, and it is now quite common to find an assumption that an endline is a piece of worn-out ritual that has little relevance to the impact and effectiveness of the ad, rather than a fundamental and essential part of the communication.

This makes a piece of research that we have just conducted with our client Sara Lee of particular significance, since it demonstrates just how crucial an endline can be to the success of an ad.