Taglines: the missing branding piece for many businesses

If you want to compete as a go-to authority and industry expert, don’t ignore the power of a strong business brand tagline. Yet, so many small businesses and consultants don’t have one.

They often assume they are only for the big guys and gals. WRONG. A strategic, creative and clear tagline is the brand vision and marketing foundation of every successful business. You don’t need to be a global juggernaut brand or a Coke, Nike, PWC, Apple to have a strong brand and business tagline.

They are just as relevant and valuable for SME’s, solo coaches and consultants. Perhaps even more so as they are fighting to stand up and out in saturated and highly competitive markets without the big marketing $$. And, it is equally important for service businesses as product.

Yet, there is often an unspoken perception that unless you are at the big end of town you may come across as pretentious or even a bit “too out there” with one. It is, of course, nonsense and actually the reverse. But only 30 per cent of SMEs and consultants have one and, if they do, they are often quite stock standard or uninspiring.

Nothing beats an inspirational and aspirational tagline to set your consultancy or small business apart in competitive markets.

Professional and creative service businesses particularly get valued cut through when they define a tagline of punch. Being in saturated service markets, a great one is memorable and transferrable to all your marketing and branding. And a powerful one will boost personal and team confidence and inclusivity no end.

The sense of pride and motivation to deliver on that vision and mission cannot be under-estimated. It’s a core part of personal and business branding and is fun to create.

But just to clarify, there is a difference between a slogan and a tagline. Slogans are used for specific campaigns or products. Whereas, taglines are your consistent business message.

For example, my tagline is “DAREing businesses to survive” and one of my product slogans is “Accelerating to the next level”.

Key benefits of a good tagline:

  1. professional perception
  2. identifies brand personality
  3. creates confidence, builds trust
  4. clarifies the vision and mission
  5. differentiates the business
  6. increases brand recall
  7. conveys results
  8. amplifies all other promotions and marketing
  9. joins teams and stakeholders together in a common purpose
  10. is a great attraction tool for new staff and top-notch suppliers.

…and its key elements:

  1. original, no cliché’s
  2. unique, not boring
  3. honest – is deliverable each time
  4. appeals to target market
  5. inspiring (vision and goal)
  6. two to eight words max
  7. memorable and simple
  8. business-benefit focused
  9. matched to brand personality
  10. check for legalities/trademarks.

A tagline is a bit like a new baby – they are for life. And whilst you can pivot if your business changes, a tagline is all enduring and you just MUST be in love with it.

You must feel really excited and energised when you see, hear and read your tagline. And, so should your target market. Be proud and define your brand essence in a cracker tagline.

Sue Parker, Founder, DARE Group Australia

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