The Grumpy Grammarian

Spread The Happy - How Nutella’s Grammar Mistake Increased Sales By 15%

This campaign turned an adjective (happiness) into a noun (happy). It’s a huge grammar no-no, but it’s a widely-used trick in advertising.

By “nouning” the adjective, it turned a lackluster phrase (spread happiness) into something much more memorable and punchy. Because of this, it stood out. Like pure hazelnut bliss.

Just how successful was this campaign with a grammar mistake?

It debuted in 2015 and was a huge success. Overall, it creased brand awareness and sales of Nutella by 15%.

During the first 2 days of the campaign:

    • A jar of Nutella was sold every 2.5 seconds

    • 17% + increase in sales value

    • Instagram followers increased to 59.9k

    • 15,000+ stories from fans about Nutella

    • Twitter followers increased to 144.6k

It’s like a brand channeled its inner DJ Khaled and screamed “and another one,” on a new hip hop track. 

How To Remix Words In Your Copy Like A DJ

Rhetorical devices are words or word phrases that are used to convey meaning, provoke a response from a reader, and persuade.

“Anthimeria” is one of like a million rhetorical devices used to create new words or expressions by using one part of speech or word class in place of another. To effectively use this rhetorical device, you either turn a(an):


    • Adjective Into Noun

    • Noun Into Verb

    • Adjective Into Adverb

Shakespeare converts a noun “peace” into a verb in this line: “The thunder would not peace at my bidding” (King Lear). Using nouns as verbs has become such a common practice that now many nouns are often used as verbs.

Language is always fluid and is in constant transformation. So using a verb as a noun or vice versa is not a surprise. It’s actually compelling. Instead of redundant like some openings on hip hop songs.