A Quick Guide to Creating Your Business’s Perfect Tagline

Before a customer even sets foot in the door, the tagline will tell them what to expect. #MichaelsWilder #marketing Click To Tweet

A tagline is the way your business chooses to introduce itself to your customers, so it’s expected that you’d want to make a good first impression.

Completely unique to one particular company or small business, a tagline is a phrase that establishes the brand’s personality. When many businesses tend to have similar names or offer similar services, a tagline helps to set a business apart from its competitors.

Not only that, but a good tagline gives customers an idea of the core values of a company or the key benefits of their products. Before a customer even sets foot in the door, the tagline will tell them what to expect.

So, don’t underestimate the power of a great tagline. It’s not just a catchy phrase. It’s a powerful marketing tool that is a key part of your brand’s story.

The Recipe for a Winning Tagline

A great tagline communicates the attitude of a brand. It’s meant to be catchy and memorable so that it sticks in the mind of the consumer. At the same time, it should convey a benefit of using the product it advertises. Finally, it sets the brand apart from its competitors.

Let’s take it a step further and break down the core aspects of a successful slogan to see just what makes certain catchphrases so darn good.

Attitude

Every brand has a personality. Apple is tech-y, yet accessible. Forever 21 is youthful and trendy. Clif bar is outdoorsy and health conscious. A slogan should reflect this unique point-of-view.

Let’s take a closer look at Clif bar as an example, which uses the tagline, “Feed your adventure.” It’s a perfect representation of the essence of the brand. It links the product to an adventurous lifestyle and implies that eating a Clif bar will give you the energy you need to be healthy and active.

Memorability

Your tagline should be succinct and easy to recall. It should roll off the tongue naturally, and one way that advertisers often achieve this is through the use of poetic devices like alliteration and repetition, which make the slogan sound more appealing and make it more likely to stick in your head.

“Maybe it’s Maybelline,” “Do the Dew” (Mountain Dew), and “The Quicker Picker Upper” (Bounty) are all great examples of slogans that are just plain fun to say.

Of course, a slogan doesn’t need to rhyme to be memorable. McDonald’s “I’m lovin’ it” and Nike’s “Just do it” are simple but iconic. A short, confident slogan can often be more memorable than a longer and more complex catchphrase.

Incentive

A good tagline is framed in a positive light, offering a clear benefit of using the product.

Subway’s “Eat fresh” is straightforward and entices consumers to make a healthy choice. Dollar Shave Club’s “Shave time. Shave money” highlights the efficiency and affordability of their razors.

Differentiation

Consumers have boundless choices in today’s economy. Why should they choose one particular brand over another? A good tagline can help a brand stand out from its competitors.

Maybe a product is more flavorful than its competitors, or maybe it’s more affordable. For example, Taco Bell’s “Think outside the bun,” Apple’s “Think Different,” and Disneyland’s “The happiest place on Earth” all tell consumers why they are unique and different.

Cooking Up the Perfect Tagline

It’s one thing to know the recipe for creating an on-brand, catchy, enticing, and unique tagline, but it’s an entirely different thing to actually put it all together into a neat 5-7-word package.

So, what should you do when you sit down to create a tagline for your business?

  1. Start by brainstorming all the words you associate with your brand and products. Say, for example, that you run a local winery. What words come to mind? Sweet? Organic? Elegant? Fruity? Earthy? Jot down every and anything you can think of.
  2. After you have a good list, experiment with saying the words out loud. Which words are the easiest or most interesting to say? Are there any words that naturally seem to go together? This step will help you to narrow down your list.
  3. Work outward. Think of associated words and phrases that connect and expand upon your key words. For example, if you’d like to incorporate the idea of elevation and refinery, you can expand this one concept into a few different options for a tagline. Get creative, and don’t be afraid to write down anything that comes to mind. You never know. It could lead to something great.
  4. Once you have a few ideas, make sure to get opinions from friends and colleagues. Ask them what associations they have with your taglines. Is there a negative connotation to any of the words? Does it fit with their perception of your brand? Even the simplest phrases have been focus-tested and revised, so don’t get discouraged if it takes a few tries to come up with the perfect combination of words!
  5. Make your choice, and start promoting it. Remember, the purpose of your tagline is to help your customers better know your business—your values, your services, your purpose. Wherever your business’s name is displayed, your tagline should appear right alongside it. Include it in your promotional materials, your website, and your signage. 

The story of your brand starts with its tagline. Make sure you know what tale you want to tell.

Mike Speer Administrator
Chief Marketing Officer Michaels WIlder

Opinions are my own and not the views of my employer.

Chief Marketing Officer at Michaels Wilder and an entrepreneur since before the average person knew what that even meant, Mike has helped countless businesses build effective sales and marketing strategies. His philosophy is, “If you’re not thinking 10 years ahead, you’re already behind.” Mike’s content has appeared in Forbes Magazine, Inc. and Apple News. He has also been featured numerous times as a “Top 10 Writer” worldwide on the Q&A content site, Quora.

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Mike Speer Administrator
Chief Marketing Officer Michaels WIlder

Opinions are my own and not the views of my employer.

Chief Marketing Officer at Michaels Wilder and an entrepreneur since before the average person knew what that even meant, Mike has helped countless businesses build effective sales and marketing strategies. His philosophy is, “If you’re not thinking 10 years ahead, you’re already behind.” Mike’s content has appeared in Forbes Magazine, Inc. and Apple News. He has also been featured numerous times as a “Top 10 Writer” worldwide on the Q&A content site, Quora.

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