The Tag Line, Slogan, Position Line, Theme Line.....

Creating a tag line is an exhaustive and never-ending exercises for some companies. The examinations, deliberations and ruminations can become overwrought navel-gazing journeys. Like that a simple set of poetic words will set a positioning strategy and ignite a marketing campaign to success.

It’s not so simple.

We all yearn for a “Just Do It” or “The Ultimate Driving Machine” for low latency reach to motivate customers.  In fact “Just Do It” was not well received at first - for those of you old enough to remember when introduced, its glibness seemed irrelevant. Phil Knight surely just trusted Dan Wieden enough to run with it. For marketers the tag lines role is meant to be a mnemonic device designed to aid recall and foster positive associations for brands; ultimately to help instill trust and belief-preference. Functionally what really happens is that memorability and trust  for a brand comes from long term integrated consistency and continuity, not poetic language in a 5 word or less Haiku.

All to often campaign strategies and marketing directors change in a schizophrenic ballet of new ideas and directions. Inconsistent behavior stresses our trust in people, so too with brands.It’s a small piece of a big puzzle but the best tag lines are simply reflections of well thought out campaign strategies that are integrated consistently at every morsel of brand communication and behavior over a reasonable period of time.

Don’t seek the silver bullet siren of a beautiful set of words for your Tag Line, seek instead a long-term disciplined integrated brand strategy...and oh yes, if you do everything else right from products, operations, sales, media, channel management, IT, service, research, breakthrough creative etc., etc., etc., etc., etc., - total marketing integration - customers may just grow to trust and prefer your brand.Finally, tag lines are not always necessary and can be a somewhat dated branding tactic vulnerable to the whims of changing agendas. A brand can succeed without one. To name a few from many, Mercedes, Prada, Starbucks, Microsoft and Google have done just fine thank you being tag-less.