Happy Accidents #013 - M&M Slogan
What melts in your mouth, but not in your hands?
Welcome to this week's edition of Happy Accidents! Today, we’re taking a sweet trip down memory lane to talk about one of the most beloved candies in the world: M&M's.
But we're not just talking about the candy itself - we're diving into the story of how its famous slogan was created by accident.
In the 1940s, Forrest Mars Sr. the son of the founder of the Mars candy company, was now in charge of Mars Inc. He was looking to expand the company's line of chocolates.
While on a trip to Spain, he came across soldiers eating chocolate pellets that had been coated in a hard shell to prevent them from melting.
The idea fascinated Mars and became the inspiration for M&M's. But that's not where the story ends.
It wasn't until a few years later, that the candy's famous slogan was created.
The story goes that Forrest Mars Sr. was in a meeting with ad agency BBDO when he overheard a discussion two people were having about the name and slogan for the candy saying, "We don't want to be the 'suckers' of the candy industry."
They were looking for a way to have the chocolates stand-out and be uniquely identified as a Mars product, not just another generic candy, like suckers.
Mars reportedly interrupted and said, "That's it! We'll call them M&M's so people will ask for them by name.
The two 'M's represented the names of Forrest E.Mars Sr. and Bruce Murrie, son of Hershey Chocolate's president William F. R.Murrie, who had a 20 percent share in the product.
Then remembering the soldiers he encountered years earlier, Mars added, "and we'll make them so they melt in your mouth, not in your hand."
The slogan stuck.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
The famous M&M slogan became an instant hit and has been used in their advertising ever since.
All due to his chance encounter with some soldiers in Spain years early. A Happy Accident!
Some fun facts:
The original colors of M&M's were brown, yellow, green, red, and violet. However, due to World War II rationing, the violet dye was discontinued and replaced by tan.
Red M&M's were briefly discontinued in 1976 because of concerns about the dye being a potential carcinogen. They were brought back due to popular demand.
The famous "M" logo on M&M's was designed by a 21-year-old graphic designer named William Murrie in 1950.
The company sells over 400 million M&M's every day, making it one of the most popular candies in the world.
The lessons here:
Listen to the world around you: Sometimes the best ideas can come from unexpected places, like overheard conversations in a meeting!
Keep it simple: The "melt in your mouth, not in your hand" slogan is a perfect example of a catchy, easy-to-remember phrase that has stood the test of time.
Take calculated risks: Forrest Mars Sr. took a chance on a new product and a new slogan, and it paid off big time. Don't be afraid to try something new and different - you never know where it might lead!
YOUR Happy Accidents
Got your own Happy Accident story to share? Reply to this email and let me know about it. You just might end up in a future edition of the newsletter!
Help me reach my goal of 10k subscribers by the end of 2023. Forward this newsletter to 3 people you know would love these stories!
Did someone send you this email?
Subscribe to the Happy Accidents newsletter to make sure you don't miss out on these fascinating tales each week.