Masters Series: Paula Green

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Paula Green — Avis

Who knew marketing a company as no. 2 would be so effective? But Paula Green’s advertising slogan, “We Try Harder,” did just that.

Scrawled across the page of an ad, in bold, black and white print was a kind of manifesto that casted Avis as a company that is willing to work for its customers. Green’s work, in collaboration with art director Helmut Krone, not only placed Avis on the map, but revolutionized the entire rent-a-car industry, Google writes:

More than a catchy advertising slogan, Avis adopted the phrase as the company’s manifesto. In just four years, the rent-a-car company had overhauled every facet of their business, resulting in a market share increase from 11% to 34%. With just three words, Avis had set a new standard for rental car companies around the world. A testament to Paula’s vision, half a century later, ‘We Try Harder’ remains the company’s tag line.

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Green first worked as a copywriter for Seventeen magazine, before she went from secretary to Creative Vice President of Doyle Dane Bernbach. She went on to start her own agency, Green Dolmatch, with her husband. Together, they took on major clients, including ILGWU, New York Times, Subaru and the American Cancer Society. As a pioneer of women in advertising, Green recently joined Steve Jobs in The One Club Hall of Fame. She currently lives on Manhattan.

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