Eine Abstimmung für Rasereigesicht

In a potentially ill-advised marketing stunt, German industrial giant Henkel has decided to let the public design—and choose—the new packaging for its dish-washing liquid, Pril.

I love how Henkel describes Pril on its website:

If you want a lot, wash your dishes with Pril” [Willst du viel, spül mit Pril] – Often, it is the simplest of advertising slogans that will stick in the minds of consumers.

Well, yes … Willst du viel, spül mit Pril *does* roll off the tongue. But why do I want to buy Pril, exactly?

With Pril, dishwashing turns into fun.

Ah, fun! Maybe that’s why Henkel decided to let consumers have a little fun with their brand. Unfortunately, the top contenders don’t exactly scream “fun.”

Currently in first place is this charming “rage face.” Exactly what every housewife wants to see next to her kitchen sink, I think:

In second place, we have a sausage (I mean, bratwurst). Or is that a turd?

And in third place we have, well, I’m not sure what this is:

Other contenders include a blank slate—presumably so you can create your own label when you’re done with the dishes:

… and a design that is sure to appeal to Dexter and his serial-killer friends:

It used to be that companies vigorously protected their product design. The goal was to create a recognizable, trusted brand that would inspire loyalty in consumers.

Are we seeing the emergence of a new marketing trend, in which loyalty and trust are traded for Internet buzz and audience participation? I can’t help but wonder whether it will pay off, in the long run.

Anyway … the contest ends on May 15. I’ll post the winner when it’s announced.

A side-note for my typophiliac friends: Love the cool, hand-drawn font Pril used for this contest?

It’s called Sketch Block. You’re welcome.

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