Unless you read something and promptly forget it (in which case, you have a shorter memory span than a fish (and no, there’s no award for that)), today we’re getting all-up in the grill of taglines.
A carefully crafted, memorable phrase that’s associated with a person, business or random group of hooligans*
*Extract from the Dictionary of Raz
Your tagline, when written correctly, tells people exactly what it is you do. No additional thought required.
When a customer’s deciding between using your services over someone else’s, you want to be the one that sees their pain-point and solves their problem in your tagline itself.
And when said customer reads your tagline, they scream ‘Yes! Yes! Yyeeessssss!’ and proceed to throw money, underwear, their kids and their pets at you <— I want a picture when this happens to you.
At its very basic, your tagline will describe to anyone randomly stumbling across your site like a drunken vagabond on rue de Martyrs late on a Saturday night, what your business achieves for them.
And at its height, it’s the line that’s automatically associated with your business and is at the core of the brand.
Think – There are some things that money can’t buy. For everything else there’s MasterCard.
Think – Because you’re worth it
Think – Just do it
I don’t have to tell you who these companies are – you recognise them just by the tagline (apart from MasterCard, who decided to get all smug and put their name in the tagline – an idea you can totally steal, pumpkin).
So the skinny is this – nail your tagline. Perfect it. You’re justified if you’re spending hours on getting it right. It’s one of the cornerstones of your business, of your blog, and basically of your life (full disclosure: the last part’s there for dramatic effect).
So, let’s see who’s doin’ it well:
When the clue is in the name (not the tagline)
The business name and tagline are complimentary. They leave no questions as to what the business is about:
Boost Blog Traffic: Getting you the traffic you deserve
Leaving Work Behind: Quit your job and build your best life
Men with Pens: Better websites for better results
When the name isn’t a clue (but the tagline is)
When the name of the entrepreneur is the name of the business, the tagline is key to explaining what the business will achieve:
Chris Ducker: Start up and small business strategies for entrepreneurs
Marie Forleo: Create a business and life you love
Steve Pavlina: Personal development for smart people
When the name confuses you … but the tagline doesn’t
This is reserved for businesses that use some fancy-schmancy name for their business, and so rely on the tagline to get the message nailed:
Aweber: email marketing
Flickr: Photo sharing
LinkedIn: The world’s largest professional network
The ones that need a facelift
And if I were going to give taglines a go for existing businesses? Here’s how I’d do it:
Metro bank: The bank that’s open when your doctor isn’t
McDonalds: It’s 3am. You’re drunk. With only $4 in your pocket
UPS: Mail that’s always a surprise delivery
Facebook: Stalking legitimised
Vogue Magazine: 90% advertisements; 10% fashion news.
LinkedIn: 500+ connections … and you only recognise 7
Rakuten.com: Amazon’s poor cousin
And one final note on taglines? They can be changed whenever it fits your fancy.
- Adding additional services? Change your tagline to cater for them
- Brand taking a new direction? Change your tagline to reflect this
- Going blonde? Best to leave the tagline out of this particular decision
Gillette moved on from the best a man can get to masters of style
Danielle LaPorte moved from white hot truth + sermons on life to Sermons on life, love, consciousness, some cash, and everyday liberation. And desire. It all gets back to desire.
Think traffic/Fizzle moved from Building a thriving and profitable audience for your site
to For independent creatives and entrepreneurs building matterful things.
What taglines do you love? Does your tagline need some work? Describe what your business does, what you do to set your customers world alight, and let’s get it nailed right here in the comments.
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