Creating a memorable slogan can work wonders for a business. Done properly, it distils an organisation’s entire raison d’etre into a single pithy phrase that unites colleagues and customers alike.
Slogans can emerge from the personal mottos of inspirational founders or might be pieces of found poetry captured from off-the-cuff remarks — but the best of them are worth their weight in gold.
Here are three reasons why slogans can boost your business.
Sometimes a slogan can be used to convey the fact that a brand aspires to be much more than the sum of its parts.
And Adidas is a brand that’s nurtured crossover appeal since founder Adi Dassler convinced US sprint legend Jesse Owens to wear his prototype shoes for the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
The German outfit has since become synonymous with the slogan ‘impossible is nothing’ and the Muhammad Ali quote oozes the sense of transcendence that The Greatest embodied.
Adidas is now an iconic brand in music culture and popular art as well as sports — confirming the slogan’s underlying message that the only limitations are your own imagination.
Nike’s ‘just do it’ slogan first appeared in 1988 and has become so ubiquitous that it’s found on everything from customised household products to caps and t-shirts.
The phrase neatly sums up the determination required for professional and amateur athletes and fitness enthusiasts to strive for excellence no matter what life throws in the way.
The slogan-led campaign was created by marketers Jerome Conlon and Dan Wieden as an emotive call to arms that would widen Nike’s target audience from a handful of mostly male elite pro athletes to 150 million enthusiastic amateur participants.
The twist in the tale is that Wieden’s classic catchphrase was sourced from ‘let’s do it’ — the last words of convicted murderer Gary Gilmore.
A superb slogan can also emphasise the fantastic functionality of your products or services.
Advertising guru David Ogilvy created the tagline ‘don’t leave home without them’ for the long-running American Express traveller’s cheques ad campaign with actor Karl Malden in 1975.
And when the Amex credit card was introduced a few years later it was simply adapted to ‘don’t leave home without it’.
Making your brand sound indispensable is a sure-fire way of differentiating yourself from the competition, as further evidenced by MasterCard’s timeless slogan first introduced in 1997 ‘There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else, there’s MasterCard’.
Finding a slogan that encapsulates your brand values and encourages customer loyalty is no simple task.
If it’s going to be emblazoned across personalised door mats and designer t-shirts for decades to come, it needs to carefully tread the fine line between cheesy and charming.
But it’s a great way of positioning your offering powerfully and imprinting your message on the collective consciousness.
These three reasons why slogans can boost your business should kick-start your quest to find that marvellous motto.
What’s your favourite ad slogan? Share your stories in the comments section.