10 Companies That Totally Nailed Their Taglines
by Sue Tamani | on September 6, 2012
Seriously … it’s ridiculously hard. If you don’t believe me, just grab your favorite copywriter and ask.
But do you know what’s even more difficult? Expressing a complex emotional concept in just a couple of words. In other words, coming up with a tagline. Yeah, it’s a head-scratcher.
But that’s why we have a lot of respect for these brands that did it right. They figured out how to convey their value proposition to their buyer persona in just one short sentence. And a quippy one at that! Not too shabby, at all. So if you’re looking to get a little tagline inspiration of your own, take a look at some of our favorite company taglines — from past and present!
1) Just Do It
Nike was founded in 1978. While it was clear that Nike was a brand focused on footwear and sportswear, no one knew exactly what it stood for until 10 years later when the “Just Do It” campaign debuted.
Instantly, the message began to resonate. It was no longer about just a shoe or a pair of shorts; it was about a state of mind. You don’t have to be an athlete to be in shape or tackle an obstacle. If you want to do it, just do it. That’s all it takes.
But there’s no way Kennedy+Weiden, the agency that established this tagline, could possibly have guessed that that is the direction Nike was headed when the company first debuted. This tagline’s proof positive that a brand needs to give itself time for a tagline to marinate before anyone can truly understand what it means to its audience.
2) Think Different
Ah, the infamous Apple tagline. Unlike Nike, it only took Apple one year before the“Think Different” tagline debuted. But that’s because this isn’t just any brand — this is the iconic Apple! The company everyone looks to for brand brilliance, advertising astonishment, and thinking different!
It only took moments before this tagline was plastered everywhere and people began to realize that with an Apple computer, they weren’t just using a computer … they were unique. They were innovative. They were tech-savvy. They were everything they always wanted to be, because they had this simple machine to guide them. And even today, despite the tagline being retired, Apple users feel a sense of elitism and creativity for being among those who think different.
3) I’m Lovin’ It
I bet the tune is popping into your head now … ba da ba ba ba … I’m lovin’ It! McDonald’s, the trophy child of all things fast food, was founded in 1940. How long did it take this widely-known brand to understand that when people indulge in their food they are, quite literally, loving it? A little over 60.
That’s right, the “I’m Lovin’ It” campaign didn’t launch until 2003, but still stands tall in 2012. Despite how poor their food may be for one’s health, when people eat McDonald’s, they can’t help but love it. The McDonald’s tagline doesn’t promise you that you’ll actually get any benefits from eating their food. It doesn’t tell you that they care about your health or your favorite flavors. It simply claims that when you eat their food, you’ll love their food. There’s not much more to it.
4) Can You Hear Me Now? Good.
Here’s another brand that took its time coming up with something that truly resonated with its audience. While Verizon was founded in 1983, they continued to battle against various phone companies — AT&T and T-Mobile stand out as two of its strongest competitors. But what makes Verizon different among these other companies? Oh! No matter where you are, you have service. You may not have the greatest texting options, or the best cellphone options, but you will always have service. And boy does this promise stand true. Just move a little to your left or right, and someone will be able to hear you. This tagline appeared in 2002, under the umbrella of “we never stop working for you.”
5) Because You’re Worth It
Yeah, I am worth it. Who doesn’t want to feel that? L’Oreal realized that when women wear makeup, they want to be beautiful. They want to feel desirable, wanted, worth it. And by supplying the makeup that isn’t out of the reach of most women’s pocketbooks, L’Oreal was showing women that anyone can be “worth it.”
With this tagline, it was no longer about the product, but about the image — the image the product could get you. But by focusing on the latter, L’Oreal was able to push it’s brand further, and give the entire concept of makeup a much more powerful message. Because hey … you’re worth it.
6) Got Milk?
While everyone knows the infamous Got Milk? campaign, not everyone remembers that it was launched by the California Milk Processor Board (CMPB) the same year the campaign launched. What’s interesting about this campaign is that it initially launched to combat the rapid increase in fast food and soft beverages. The CMPB wanted people to revert to milk as their drink of choice in order to sustain a healthier life. And what better way to catch people’s attention than by suscepting them to the desire to make a milk mustache? The simple words “Got Milk?” scribbled above celebrities, animals, and children with milk mustaches became one of the longest lasting campaigns ever. The CMPB wasn’t determined to make their brand known with this one … they were determined to infiltrate the idea of drinking milk across the nation. And these two simple words sure as heck did!
7) Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands
Nobody likes sticky, chocolatey fingers. And in the summer, it’s nearly impossible to hold chocolate in your hands outside without it melting away in seconds. M&M’s, however, have a conveniently covered hard shell that keep this very situation from occuring. And that is the brilliance behind their tagline, “Melts in your mouth, not in your hands.”
This is one brand tagline that didn’t need much time before realizing its core value proposition. At the end of the day, chocolate is chocolate. How can one piece of chocolate truly stand out from another? By bringing in the convenience factor, of course! This particular example highlights the importance of finding something that makes your brand different from the others; in this case, the hard shell that keeps chocolate from melting all over you.
8) Betcha Can’t Eat Just One
Seriously, who has ever had just one chip?! And while this tagline stands true for other snack companies, Lay’s was clever enough to pick up on it straight away and use it to their advantage. Because when it comes time to indulge in Lays, you have to munch away until the bag is empty. It’s truly uncontrollable.
Lay’s tapped into our truly human incapability to ignore crispy, salty goodness when it’s staring us in the face. Carbs, what a tangled web you weave.
But seriously, notice how the emphasis isn’t on the taste of the product. Because at the end of the day, there will be other brands who taste good. What Lay’s was able to bring forth with their tagline is that totally human, uncontrollable nature of snacking til the cows come home on some salty goodness. Oh man, who wants a bag of Lay’s right now?
9) Tastes So Good, Cats Ask for It by Name
Meow meow meow meow … who remembers the catchy tune to which cats meowed in commercials for Meow Mix? Meow Mix released a simple but telling tagline, “Tastes So Good, Cats Ask For It By Name.” It plays off the fact that every time a cat meows, he/she is actually asking for Meow Mix! The tagline was clever and successfully planted Meow Mix as a standout brand in a cluttered market.
10) All the News That’s Fit to Print
This is personally my favorite. The tagline came into existence in the late 1890s as a movement of opposition against other news publications printing lurid journalism. The New York Times didn’t stand for sensationalism, but rather important facts and stories that would educate their audience. They literally deemed their content all the real news fit to print. This helped the paper become more than just a news outlet, but a company that paved the way for creditable news. The New York Times quickly became a thought leader in the journalism world, and continues to be one today. The company didn’t force a tagline upon people when it first was founded, but rather created one in a time where it was needed most.
Posted by Anum Hussain
Fri, Aug 31, 2012 @ 08:00 AM Comments
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