Straplines have been around for so long, it’s easy to lose track of their relevance to the modern brand. However, they are still one of the most powerful branding tools out there.

Although not strictly necessary – when used well and consistently, slogans can be a company’s secret weapon on the road to building a memorable and dynamic brand. Particularly in today’s highly competitive environment, straplines are a great way to differentiate your brand from competitors, express your brand promise and ‘sell’ your brand to the customer.

And when that all-important intention to purchase moment comes around for your customer, a brand’s strapline can make the difference between them choosing to buy your product/service, or choosing to take their business to one of your competitors instead.

Made up of just a few well-selected words or phrases, straplines have the power to inspire strong brand loyalty among consumers, make your brand more memorable and thus enhance company brand equity exponentially.

But developing a strapline with substance is often harder than it may sound. There are various types of taglines you can employ to enhance your brand experience – three of which will explore later on. Each serve a specific purpose and suit different industries and brand personalities.

As experienced branding agency, we are regularly asked to develop new straplines for clients. So, what is the secret to getting it right? The most effective messages are simple, yet substantial. Often accompanying your company name and logo, a slogan offers consumers an additional piece of your brand story for them to buy in to.              

A great marketing strapline should sum up what your brand stands for in just a few words and fulfil 3 main criteria. It should: 

– Represent your brand’s value and ethos

– Appeal to and engage your audience

– Be short, simple, snappy and highly memorable

Let’s explore the three main types:

#1 Descriptive straplines

carlsberg strapline

This type of strapline is to the point, practical and matter-of-fact. In a few short words, it is able to get across exactly who you are and what it is you do as a business. It doesn’t hold an abundance of excitement or flavour, but what it does do is offer a highly informative view of the company. A descriptive strapline would be most beneficial for a smaller businesses because of it’s ability to showcase the company’s services in a clear and direct manner. However, a handful of larger establishments have also given descriptive straplines a try, and found they serve them very well when executed well.

For example:

Hub Property Care – All trades under one roof

Harrison Heating – Central Heating Service

Innocent – Little Tasty Drinks

Carlsberg – Probably the best beer in the world

#2 Aspirational straplines

apple strapline

Contrary to descriptive straplines, an aspirational strapline does not describe the service, but instead highlights a company’s values or ethos. Often used by larger companies, aspirational straplines offer a sense of lifestyle and excitement to their customers. These straplines are beneficial because they have the capability to begin telling your brand’s story and start the customer brand experience. This variation of strapline is the most successful when utilised by well-established companies who hold a global presence.

Examples include:

Nike – Just Do It

Tesco – Every Little Helps

Skittles – Taste the Rainbow

Apple – Think Different

L’Oreal – Because you’re worth it

Marmite –  Love it or hate it

#3 Combination straplines

hsbc strapline

In-between descriptive and aspirational straplines, is a combination of the two. This type of strapline still informs the customer what your company offers, but also ads a flavourful and insightful twist into your company.

Well-known examples would be:

Subway – Eat Fresh

eBay – Buy It. Sell It. Love It.

Nokia – Connecting people

NatWest – Helpful Banking

Max Factor – The Make-Up of Make-Up Artists

HSBC – The world’s local bank

Of course there are other types of strapline not covered within these three categories. For example, other companies incorporate their name into their strapline – e.g. ‘You can do it if you B&Q it.’ or ‘Have a break, have a KitKat’. The idea is to present a brand and service offering as one.

Need some help developing your perfect strapline? Whether you are an entrepreneur looking to create a totally new tagline for your business, or an established company looking for fresh creative ideas, our experts are here to help! Get in touch today.