The Army is planning to launch a new marketing campaign next year using an old slogan — “Be all you can be” — to attract potential recruits.

Maj. Gen. Alex Fink, chief of Army enterprise marketing, hinted at a forthcoming brand refresh for the service in August.

“We will be focusing a little bit more on Army brand work in the upcoming fiscal year,” he said on a call with Army Times, noting conceptualization for the project began pre-pandemic in March 2020.

Army’s “Be all you can be” ads ran for over two decades starting in the 1980s, according to the Army Historical Foundation. The public first saw the campaign during the 1981 New Year’s college football bowl games.

The magazine Advertising Age ranked the “Be all you can be” campaign as the 18th best in a list of the top-100 marketing campaigns in the 20th century, the foundation added.

As the Army and other services continue to look for ways to resolve their recruiting dilemmas, a revamp of former marketing material is being considered as a worthwhile choice to drive up enlistment numbers through a challenging recruiting environment.

“I mean, we did these things ... because of the situation that we found ourselves in,” Fink said regarding the prior campaigns.

The blast from the past follows the U.S. Military Academy at West Point revealing it will use World War II-era themed uniforms in its upcoming annual football game against rival Navy.

Senior Army leaders have reportedly approved the slogan and the “Be all you can be” campaign will officially launch in March, according to Stars & Stripes. When the new advertisements may actually appear on television, however, is not clear at this time.

Observation Post is the Military Times one-stop shop for all things off-duty. Stories may reflect author observations.

Jonathan is a staff writer and editor of the Early Bird Brief newsletter for Military Times. Follow him on Twitter @lehrfeld_media

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