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AVIS: We HAVE Tried Harder in the Past...but Don't Hold Us to It

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Since it was introduced by legendary ad agency Doyle Dane Bernbach in 1963, the Avis slogan has been part of the American vernacular:

But, according to Avis' new print campaign, "trying harder" is an admirable goal that may or not be reached by the employee helping you.

Of course, it might...though there's no guarantee.

However, you can't count it out.

Just don't bank on it.

That said, don't not bank on it, either.

See, the new Avis ads recount exceptional customer service experiences renters have had. To wit:

"Avis renter Giana Fernandez rents weekly for work from Avis employee Julie Kahn, but this week she needed a car for more than just business. Giana told Julie she had a first date. Julie made sure to find the perfect car for both. Giana wrote to say, the car ended up being better than her date. Helping renters find the right car is important, but not everyone does it. We do."

Well, "we" have, certainly. However, it seems Avis' legal team wants to make absolutely clear that you may -- with no guarantees, implied or otherwise -- receive stellar service.

Or, you may not.

Or you might.

But there's a chance you won't.

Or will.

Or won't.

So don't expect it.

Down at the bottom of each ad is a disclaimer, which reads:

"The statements contained are about actual situations from actual customers who have expressed their opinion. This is not intended as a guarantee of performance."

(click to enlarge)
God help the next company that works with the Avis attorney(s) who insisted on this disclaimer.


"Hmmm...I'm a little concerned about this one, guys. Can we legally support the fact that Coke is always good with food? What if the customer happens to be eating something he or she doesn't like?"

"Good point, Len. Just because someone else's Coca-Cola went well with their sandwich, yours might not."

"We gotta cover ourselves. There's a reason the mutual fund industry does this."


"Whoa, whoa, whoa -- somebody's not thinking straight today. Nobody doesn't like Sara Lee? Are you prepared to back that up in a court of law, counselor?"

"Well, not --"

"I can think of someone who doesn't like Sara Lee right off the top of my head -- my diabetic nephew who's also allergic to white flour. Is he 'nobody'?? Does he not have rights?? Somebody get a disclaimer up pronto, please and thank you."


"Uh, Jerry -- we have a major problem, here."

"What's that?"

"Taste is subjective, you know that. We can't be calling this product 'tasty' without opening ourselves up to all manner of legal issues. In fact, I'm not so sure about calling it 'kake,' either."

"Won't people know it's just a name?"

"Idiot, people don't 'know' anything. Don't you realize that?"

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