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  • Tea adverts

    I read with great interest about PG Tips could be sold by Unilever as the "cuppa" seems to be going out of fashion - on the other hand, the same could have been said about monochrome television 50 years ago, flares 40 years ago, and Thatcherism 30 years ago - so much for Mrs Tea indeed!

    I am rather surprised about this because I thought that the cup of tea was one of Britain, if not England's traditions, even if the tea itself actually comes from India or China - also, PG Tips for many years was the flagship advertised brand of tea, and as I mentioned on the thread I started about whether members would prefer tea or coffee. Yes, I prefer tea to coffee. But how was it advertised?

    In the 1980s and 1990s most of the main tea companies had strong advertising campaigns - the aforementioned PG Tips had Molly Badham's chimpanzees loaned from Twycross Zoo in their adverts, which was a campaign that lasted several decades from 1956 onwards - and even the Mr Shifter adverts voiced by John Junkin and the Tour de France adverts were still being shown in the late 1980s after they were first seen in the previous decade - it was spun off into an LP of children's songs and stories which I have written about on here. Tetley had the famous cartoon Tetley tea folk which gave actors such as Brian Glover and George Layton plenty of voiceover work - Glover seemed to be synonymous with the series of adverts just like the ones for Allinson's Bread.

    Typhoo had various celebrities such as Frankie Howerd, Cilla Black and Su Pollard appearing in their adverts, as a way of making you think that the famous like it, then Mr and Mrs Public would like it as well. There was also Brooke Bond D's campaign with an actress (Sally Jane Jackson, who had appeared in Coronation Street back in 1980 as Karen Oldfield, a character linked to Elsie Tanner's nephew), coming out of bed in her white nightshirt, cracks a mirror when she looks into it, and has a cup of D before she arrives at work as a secretary - it reminds me of Emma Wray our that sitcom Watching, but it wasn't her. And of course there are also the supermarket brands to fall back on - and Tesco have even gone back 100 years to relaunch after many decades, their "TE Stockwell" brand of tea - the name which helped to co-found Tesco back in 1919.

    Then there was the instant tea adverts such as QT instant white tea in around 1991 - cue Griff Rhys Jones voicing an advert with a huge pair of red female lips tasting a cup of tea with the disastrous "try it, you might like it" slogan. And then even PG Tips themselves and Tetley did their own version, although I would always prefer the teabags instead. Tetley launched round bags, while PG Tips launched the pyramid ones.

    I have to admit that the advertising of tea hasn't been the same now as it was in the 1980s and 1990s - I wonder why that could be? PG got rid of the chimps and in came Johnny Vegas and "Monkey" many years later, while Tetley ended its association with the tea folk characters for a "no-nonsense" advertising campaign in which some people thought were misleading - probably the reason why the company brought them back very briefly around 10 years ago.

    The question is, do you think that the reason why the cuppa is going out fashion is because of the way it was advertised compared to the strong advertising campaigns of 30 and 40 years ago, perhaps? I don't think that will go out of fashion because it is doesn't represent anything at all to do with fashion to be quite honest. One drinks it, not wears it, unless one actually spills it.
    Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

  • #2
    Re: Tea adverts

    Is it because coffee is more popular with millenials with star bucks Costa etc.I mean tea has always been no 1 with Brits but the next generations are changing.

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    • #3
      Re: Tea adverts

      Fair enough, but looking back, I have always said that tea products have always had better advertising campaigns back in the 1980s and 1990s that than coffee products - Nescafe had those middle class celebrities of the usual C-list consisting of Una Stubbs, Gareth Hunt, Sarah Greene and so on. Maxwell House had that Get the Max sub-Yuppie advertising in late 1987 and early 1988, and Victoria Wood basically started to do her stand up routine with a mug in her hand in the adverts as well.

      Gold Blend tried a soap opera gimmick which ran for around 15 years from 1984 onwards; Red Mountain had that woman sounding as if she was coughing up phlegm when impersonating a filter coffee machine; and Kenco was also around as well (Steptoe and Son appeared in the adverts at one point), but they weren't as strong (if you excuse the pun) as tea advertising campaigns from around the same time - I would hazard a guess that tea feels more British as a drink than coffee does, hence the fact that anything to do with drinking tea can easily be explored, parodied, or just simply advertised.
      Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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      • #4
        Re: Tea adverts

        I love my cup of tea first thing in the morning.My mum or my aunties always made tea from the teapot and had a crochet tea cosy to keep the pot warm

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