When a tagline is good, it is very good. Like:

“Just Do It”

“Think Different”

“Reach out and touch someone”

“Put a Tiger in Your Tank”

However, not every business needs a tagline, and not having one is better than a bad one. So take your time and don’t rush the process. Refine your choices to come up with the perfect descriptor for your business. We suggest running the top two or three choices by your clients, potential clients, and even acquaintances outside of your business to see if they get it!

At The Walsh Group, we suggest to our clients that creating a tagline, even for a new product or service, will help them focus on their key features and benefits. This allows them to stay on track with their marketing efforts. Here is how we approach the creative brainstorming of a tagline:

Keep it Short: Try to limit it to no more than six or seven words; three or four is even better. Don’t start off with “clever” right away, just words. “Soothes. Cleanses. Refreshes.”

Keep it Simple: Use everyday words that your customers will understand. Avoid industry jargon. Great Example: “The World on Time.” Do you even need to ask who and what?

Be Specific: “We’re the best” doesn’t actually say anything. Tell your prospects why they should choose you over your competition, preferably before they even think to ask the question. Good example: “Because So Much is Riding on Your Tires.”

Keep it Positive: Project a positive image. Negative taglines don’t work any better than negative campaign ads. And face it, your tagline is a small Ad you display everywhere!

Speak to your target audience: Even if your tagline is short, simple and specific, it won’t help you if it speaks to the middle-aged man and your audience is a young preteen female. As with all advertising, identify your audience and then focus on their needs and wants.

Brainstorm keywords: This is just like doing keyword research for any Web site. Write down every word you can think of that is related to any aspect of your business, product or service. Include synonyms and even homophones (words that sound alike but are spelled differently). At this point, the more words you have, the better, so don’t limit yourself.

Brainstorm about the benefits and values: Now make a list of words or phrases that describe the benefits of your product or service, along with things a client might value about it. Is your product exclusive, contemporary or classic? Combine words to see if you can combine two or more keywords plus benefits and values to create a descriptive phrase. Write down anything you can think of, again without limitng yourself.

Pulling it all together: Pick your favorites and start editing. Go through your phrases and consider how you can make them into a tagline, or if any of them work without modification. Narrow it down to two or three favorites.

And finally,

Test your favorites: It’s important to get opinions, not only of your customers, but of people outside your industry. Make sure they both like it and actually understand it. Your final tagline should be specific enough to say something meaningful, but general enough to remain relevant as your business grows. If it applies only to one product, it might be a good tagline for that product, but not for your entire business.

Most of all, make it a fun experience!

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