What a Great Tagline Can Do

On my way to drop off my daughter at pre school I heard a pretty riveting Boar’s Head lunchmeat commercial. It went on and on about the product having no perservatives and being just plain “better. At the end of the commercial I heard one of the best taglines around for this economy: “Compromise Elsewhere.” Great Tagline

In 2 words Boar’s Head managed to convey both their quality, an acknowledgement of what may be going on with their customer’s wallets, and still push that customer to have ‘luxury’ somewhere.

THAT’s what a tagline should do: speak volumes in 6 or fewer words.

I think Boar’s Head is the acknowledged in the Lunch Meat category as THE high quality brand, not that many of think too long and hard about our lunch meat. But this company is smart; they understand that in THESE economic times being THE high quality brand can actually hurt them. We’re all still reeling from the Great Recession, and the media is obsessed with talking about the rising price of food. Add to that the terrible floods and storms in America’s heartland and you have the recipe for a society desperate to cut costs at the grocery store. Heck, there’s even a new reality show about Coupon crazy moms.

At the end of the day, despite all of the panic, American’s still like ‘the good life.’ Boar’s Head’s tagline makes us all think we can have just a smidgen of it by purchasing their brand instead of the low grade meat. In 2 words they’ve mobilized their consumers.

If your tagline doesn’t immediately impact your target audience with WHY they should buy you, put it on the top of your list of Branding ‘To Dos.’

Is Your Logo Naked?

Working with small businesses I would say 50% or more have no tag line at all, and 20% of those that do have useless ones that aren’t memorable. Why do you need a great one? Because you, me, and everyone we know is so busy we can’t see straight half the time, so when we’re looking for a product or service we usually don’t have a lot of time. Add to that the fact that we are INUNDATED with spam & junk mail and you have one frenzied prospect you’re trying to attract.

Some business names themselves are remarkable enough to identify WHAT service a company provides, but a tag line should can inform the viewer about what sets you apart and ensure that they remember your BRAND. Here’s a list of some of my personal favorites:

1. Nike – “Just do it.” Overused now, but absolutely awesome, inspiring, and meaningful.
2. FedEx – “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.” Echoes your own sense of urgency when you need quick freight service.
3. BMW – “The Ultimate Driving Machine” Says a lot more than “just another luxury car.”
4. American Express – “Don’t Leave Home Without It.” A straight forward sense of security.
5. John Deere “Nothing runs like a Deere” Reliability in 5 words
7. Maxwell House – “Good to the last drop.” Simple, good stuff.
8. RG Petty Construction – “On budget, On Time, On Demand” – So you’ll expect a lot, but that’s a good thing.
9. Gibbons Beer – “If it’s Gibbons, it’s good.” <-- now defunct Pennsylvania beer but that tag line said it all. 10. Northeastern Maintenance "Got Snow, Need a Mow? Call Joe." My friend Joe Yantorn's maintenance business; I guarantee you know what he does and when you'd need him. There are loads of great tag lines out there, even more companies have naked logos. Your tag line should say in 6 words or less what you do or why the viewer should choose you. It shouldn’t be cute, overly clever or too technical. And if you are at a complete loss as to how to go about developing a tagline or creativity is not your strong suit hire a great marketing mind to develop one for you. Think of it as a landmark for your logo and brand, and as a landmark it will quickly distinguish you from your competition.