Speaking in plain words, a slogan is a short, concise phrase that sticks in your memory. Companies use slogans to convey the essence of their brand or product. A smart slogan must evoke an emotional response from customers, stir up their curiosity, and encourage engagement with the brand.
According Millward Brown, 82% of companies use slogans in their advertising campaigns. At the same time, only a small number of catchphrases produce the desired effect. To help you push forward and thrive, your corporate message must be created in the right way. In this article, we’ll take a look at what makes a good slogan.
How a slogan affects your promotion
Along with a company name and logo, a slogan is the alpha and omega of brand positioning. These three elements work together towards enhancing your company recognition and awareness. For the maximum effect, a slogan is often paired with a brand name on signboards, packaging, business cards, and other carriers.
A corporate slogan can have a variety of functions. It all depends on your positioning strategy, recognition, marketing goals, and other factors.
- Raise awareness. Example: “Make It Matter” by HP.
- Distinguish your company or product. Example: “The Best Man Can Be” by Gillette.
- Urge a client to perform a specific action. Example: “Snickers satisfies”.
Your slogan must:
- clearly express an idea or goal of your promotion campaign;
- be simple, memorable, unique, and concise;
- issue a call to action, but without too much pressure.
How to create a memorable slogan
Here is a curious piece of statistics. Only 11% out of 2,000 those surveyed memorize slogans. A classic example of a catchy motto is the iconic “I’m lovin’ it” by McDonald’s. What does it take to create an impactful slogan that will separate you from the pack? Luckily for you, we know the answer!
Slogan and logo must fit
A cohesive visual style is the cornerstone of smart branding. Ideally, you should work on your slogan and logo simultaneously to make sure they look organic together in terms of colors, typography, textures, etc. Take a look at how Panasonic has managed to fuse together its logotype with its “Ideas for life” slogan. It’s one good example of clever branding.
This approach has another upside. When the time comes to do a rebranding, you’ll be able to revamp your motto and logo all in one go.
Informative and succinct
An average slogan consists of 3 to 5 words. We wouldn’t recommend you to push over the 5-word limit. A concise motto has the biggest chances of being spotted and remembered. After all, you only have a few seconds to grab the attention of your audience, and it would be unwise to waste that precious time on lengthy statements.
According to Business2community, an average user spends 10 seconds viewing a video on Facebook. After that, the person either choose to continue watching, or leaves. Signboards and packaging get even less attention (ca. 1-2 seconds)!
Short and concise, your slogan must make an instant impact. Think about how strong the messages “Think” (Apple) and “Just Do It” (Adidas) are.
Funny and witty
If you’ve found a smart way to work a joke into your motto, you should totally go for it. For example, to promote their extra large beef steaks, the Wendy’s restaurant chain have coined an edgy slogan “Where’s the Beef?”. The phrase has become a meme, making the brand popularity soar. Quite unexpectedly, the Americans started to use the phrase in their everyday life, referring to literally anything.
The takeaway from this story is obvious. If you have a chance to add some humor to your motto, do it. Beware to create an unintended double meaning, though. Here is an example of a slogan translation gone awry. Imagine how the English-speaking audience reacted to the “Open your mouth for sex” call to action. As it later turned out, the Spanish version of the message simply urged the public to speak openly about AIDS.
If you’re a newbie in the market and your product still needs improving, you should keep your slogan clean of too ambitious statements, such as “No.1 solution”, “the best offer”, etc. Instead of overpraising your product, your catchphrase must reflect things as they really are.
If you absolutely have to use an expression like “the best quality”, be sure to back it up with certifications, statistical data, research findings, etc. Show your audience that you can “walk the walk”.
Imagine that your product could speak and present itself to the public. What would it say to your potential customers? Write down the potential options. Here you have a powerful source of ideas for your future slogan. If Skittles could speak, we can totally imagine them inviting you to “Taste the Rainbow”!
2 ways to coin an effective slogan
Okay, the task is clear. You need to an honest, concise, and informative slogan that fits other elements of your brand identity. Challenge accepted! Let’s take a looks at how you can create a remarkable slogan without professional help.
Set of associations
Start with getting a clear picture of your brand values, advantages, signature qualities, mission, etc. Use this information to build a set of associations, i.e. words and phrases that characterize your company or product. For a better visualization, you can present your associations in a table, diagram, or any other form that you find helpful. This is an invaluable source you can draw from to coin a meaningful slogan.
Once your set of associations has at least 100 words, you can start to combine them into slogans. Idioms and fixed expressions can add a nice touch to your motto. Use a specialized dictionary to fish for common idiomatic phrases and try to work them into your slogan.
It all starts with studying your company, product, market, and customer needs. Your task is to come up with a message your audience will respond to. Be sharp and concise. Be honest with your customers and don’t go overboard with self-praise. With all AI-based services and smart techniques at hand, you’ll have no trouble creating a memorable slogan that will drive your brand forward.
Interesting related article: “What is Marketing?“