Land of the free and home of the…brand?

At L&T, we couldn’t be more excited for a long weekend of Budweiser (i.e. “America”), burgers, and beach days. So in honor of the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, we’ve rounded up our picks for the most quintessential American ad campaigns since 1776.

These six ads will have you seeing stars (and stripes):

1. Uncle Sam: We Want You!

Dreamt up in 1916 by James Montgomery Flagg, Uncle Sam was an iconic character invented for the purpose of encouraging young men to join the U.S. Army during World War I and II. But you might be surprised to learn that this famous American poster was actually inspired by a 1914 British poster of Lord Kitchener.

2. Coca Cola: Happiness Factory

What’s more American than an ice cold coke? Also known as “The Great Happyfication”, Coca Cola’s “Happiness Factory” campaign launched in 2007. The campaign reached hundreds of millions of Americans, and was even nominated for an Emmy award.

3. McDonald’s: I’m Lovin’ It

If you owned a TV (or even a radio) at any point between 2003 and 2016, you couldn’t have missed this ubiquitous jingle. This ad campaign sparked controversy between Justin Timberlake, Pusha T, and The Neptunes, who all claimed to have written the infectious tune. The famous line was originally sung by Justin Timberlake in his aptly named four-minute song, “I’m Lovin’ It”. The jingle has since appeared in 120 countries in over 20 different languages.

4. Got Milk?

Get this: the California Milk Processor Board’s infamous “Got Milk?” campaign is credited with raising milk sales in California by 7% in just one year. Famous celebrities like Beyonce, Rihanna, and Britney Spears have each appeared in the campaign, flaunting the ad’s signature milk mustache.

5. Wendy’s: Where’s the Beef?

First launched in 1984, Wendy’s “Where’s the Beef?” slogan quickly became a popular household phrase. The line was co-opted by companies and politicians alike to criticize their competition, and was a common talking point between U.S. presidential candidates Gary Hart and Walter Mondale during the 1984 election.

6. Rosie the Riveter: We Can Do It!

The now iconic feminist figure Rosie the Riveter was originally used to represent the millions of women who worked in factories to support U.S. soldiers during World War II. These factories were markedly diverse, and female workers typically pooled their resources to help each other manage their houses, families, and finances.

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