Manipulating The Masses Podcast: The “got milk?” Advertising Phenomenon Of The ‘90s

In this episode of Manipulating The Masses we’ll be talking about the “got milk?” advertising campaign that made waves in the 1990s.



With milk sales on the decline in the early ‘90s, Executive Director of the California Milk Processor Board, Jeff Manning, hired the ad agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners to revamp milk’s reputation.


Through focus groups Goody Silverstein & Partners learned that the only time people really gave a crap about milk is when they didn’t have it. Outside of its absence milk wasn’t on the minds of any of their participants.


Rather than dwell on advertisements of yore, like “milk it does a body good,” the ad agency decided that television spots should highlight the consequences of going without milk. The campaign, ‘got milk?” was born.


Ultimately the campaign was more memorable than effective. Milk consumption continues to decline. Was it worth it?


Listen to the podcast on Spotify.

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