Animals in advertising — Pig
Hogs in many European regions outnumber people. Pigs are more numerous than most other species on this pages, yet are only sparingly used. We find a disproportionally high number of exotic species instead of our own beloved domes­ticated swine.

Do not expect to learn something. Swine texts stay bottom level with ordinary allusions. A rosy pig usually means money and a rosy future. But surprisingly enough pigs and family are also often used with allusion to quality !

first published: vi.2002, latest update v.2020

(1) 1993 – Quality to the pigs
(2) 1997 – metaphorically spoken
(3) 199? – In Berlin you may like to jog a little faster

Let's start with
the delicate German humour —no pig can endure this high-performance pressure— recommending a laser printer (1). The writer explains with much play with words how the brand stands for quality prints (hochleistungs-druck). How many suppliers dump their printer (Drucker) to market with swagger (mit viel Schwein). How they save you the stress (Druck) of finding the best printer out there. How a good nose is needed to find the best. That is probably already an allusion to the truffle tracing capacity of the species.

Our second example
is also computer related (2) and also walks the pig – truffle – quality path. Really good quality is often difficult to find. But sometimes it is quite simple ! is only the start of a page long lesson about truffling. The explanation ends where it starts, in stating the obvious. Notice how the animal on stage is not important, nor are one of its abilities. The pig is only a pointer to the truffle–quality duo. We have seen the same tactics with Goldfish where the fish is only an excuse to bring the bowl on the table.

Advertisement 4 follows exactly the same line of thinking. Truffles are his business. Wine is ours. We are hearing the quality tune again : pig points to truffle points to quality. But what about the wine advert not only with fish (5)? The quality is supposedly good enough, but is the swine pointing to the wine ? I think not. It is just a teaser, any terrestrial meat producer would work.

(4) 1987 – He goes for truffles; we for the wine.
(5) 2003 – White wine not only with fish.

One third of
Germany's young, dynamic capital consists of forest, meadows, and lakes (3). You never know what kind of companion unexpectedly may drop in. It could be a wild boar. That is why you sometimes might prefer to speed up a bit. The boar stands for a green environment, and I spot also surprise, adventure, dynamism. We don't learn a thing about the species, but I consider it nonetheless a good approach.

We recognize a
more or less similar approach in the Traffic jam, where ? advert (11). Our Sus scrofa stands for the green wilderness of the Ardenne region in Belgium. The highway is just repaired and queueing is a thing of the past. At the side of the same highway panels were planted which showed a wild boar and carried the caption an élan of progress. That is two in one : the wild boar means the natural environment of the region but also the energetic economical environment.

The wild boar
of No. 6 could be anything unusual on the city streets. The picture is full of weird things unseen by the person absorbed by his newspaper (see the bigger picture). The story is that the news soon will come on a smaller tabloid size which will give the reader the opport­unity to keep an eye on the surroundings. Thus the size is changed not to enhance the reader's experience, but to make sure that the customer can pay attention to other things. I can't quite follow.

(6) 2004 – Notice more with a smaller newspaper.
(7) 2002 – Your savings might make a carreer.
(8) 2005 – Your savings have ambition.

Never underestimate your
piggy bank says the bank of advert (7) and give your money a rosy future. The designer of (9) even did some image editing to add a slit on the back. In both cases the pig has nothing to do with quality, but both adverts allude to the old habit of rural families of breeding a pig as a source of high calorie food. Funny how such a symbol survives in a fat free and zero calorie world. Only a few years later another bank publishes a series of adverts based on (nearly) the same idea (8, 10).

(9) 1995 – Savings in your piggy bank
(10) 2006 – Your savings are ambitious.

Built to be
respected (12) is one of the better works with pigs. Three Warthogs follow a car which is supposedly the leader of the pack, and their typical behaviour (tails up) is shown. The choice of this species means adventure: one of the main feelings attached to 4×4 vehicles. The light in the scene is also very special. The top is very bright and several beams are approvingly coming down from the skies. Well done. Much better than the first try out — Follow the Leader by the same brand — in the 1990-ies with elephants (10).

(11) 2005 – Traffic jam, where?
(12) 2001 – Built to be respected