In 1996, the "American processors of fluid milk" concocted a surprising new campaign: "mock milk mustaches on the upper lips of the likes of Lauren Bacall, Kate Moss, Pete Sampras and Steve Young," as the New York Times wrote. The goal, the fluid-milk executives said, was to shift away from providing dull facts about nutrition content to "asking people, 'Why aren't you drinking your milk?' but in a fun way."
Even at the time, one of the admen acknowledged that the gimmick had a shelf-life, saying "We're keeping an eye on it to make sure we're staying fresh."
After nearly two decades, the strategy seems to have finally curdled: Sales of milk have been declining for years.
To help churn up some additional revenues, The Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) is shelving the "Got Milk" slogan, which has been its slogan/icon/suggestive reference since 1995. Instead, it has whipped up a new slogan, "Milk Life."
"MilkPEP plans to spend more than $50 million on the campaign, which will include TV, print, digital, retail promotions and PR," as AdAge reports.
And the new campaign will shift the focus back to the original strategy of touting the beverage's nutritional benefits—specifically, its protein content.