Someone on Quora asked a question about the worst taglines used in branding. Got me thinking. Brand planners may feel differently about taglines but for me they’re a powerful branding vehicle. To the tagline falls the work of explaining and defining what the brand is when the name falls flat. When a name doesn’t pass the Is-Does test (what a brand Is and what a brand Does), the tagline needs to. Coca-Cola was a great brand name. The fact that is was printed on a beverage can helped with the Is. Snapchat is a great brand name. The fact that it’s plastered on a web or mobile page helps with the Is.
But not all product or service names are that lucky. When a name shares no meaning, a good tagline can clear things up. For startups and new products, it’s crucial they pass the Is-Does test. In these cases taglines are even more important.
For established brand, where the Is is well known, the tagline can tighten the bond of consumer attachment — focusing of care-abouts and good-ats.
My biggest peeve is when a tagline is used as an advertising cherry. That is, as a summation of the ad campaign. When it’s all about the ad idea not the brand idea, it is the limpest form of tagline.
Get your brand strategy right and picking the strongest tagline will be easy.