The world of advertising, particularly for global brands, revolves around a snazzy slogan—inspiring words that stick in the mind of the consumer and evoke the need to buy what you’re selling.
So what dictates a successful slogan? We chose our top ten to illustrate.
- You’re in good hands with Allstate.
A great slogan is not about you—it’s about them. Allstate’s catchy line doesn’t merely focus on what defines the company from its perspective. Instead, it speaks directly to the customer and reassures him or her that the insurance company will be there when disaster strikes.
- I’m Lovin’ It
A great slogan doesn’t use clichés or buzzwords. This can be difficult in the trendy fast food industry, but McDonald’s stays old school with the simple and memorable phrase that goes a step further with first-person point of view.
- Built Ford Tough
A great slogan is short and catchy. Along with conveying to the customer that Ford trucks are tough, this line also rolls off the tongue with consonance, the repetition of consonant sounds. “Built” and “tough” share “t” sounds and “Ford and “tough” share “f” sounds.
- Obey Your Thirst
A great slogan is a call to action. Sprite uses the commanding word “obey” to engage consumers in reaching for its product when they’re thirsty. It’s also in consumer-focused second person, it avoids buzzwords and it’s catchy.
- Easy, breezy, beautiful CoverGirl
A great slogan is poetic. This phrase utilizes assonance, which is the repetition of vowel sounds; the long “e” sound in “easy,” “breezy” and “beautiful” rounds out nicely with the consonant “r” sounds in CoverGirl. The light, airy cadence of the sounds reflects the brand’s image of barely there, easy-to-wear makeup.
- Got milk?
A great slogan is simple. In fact, copywriting king Don Draper said, “Make it simple but significant.” This slogan is one of the most memorable in advertising history all while using just two words in the form of a question—the epitome of simple and significant.
- Just Do It
A great slogan empowers consumers. Few slogans appeal to athletes more than Nike’s simple command—just do it. Quit making excuses and run farther. Climb higher. Push your body to new limits. And make sure you’re wearing the all-empowering check mark while you’re doing it.
- Snap, Crackle, Pop
A great slogan stays true to the brand. Who hasn’t poured milk over a bowl of Rice Crispies and heard the “snap, crackle, pop”? It’s a product feature that is consistent, unique and truthful, all of which are valuable characteristics that appeal to consumers. It’s also a fantastic example of onomatopoeia—words that sound like their meanings.
- It’s everywhere you want to be.
A great slogan has rhythm. Visa’s actually functions in terms of poetic meter, which creates a “sing-song” quality. Sound out the syllables as you tap your foot (saying “everywhere” as we actually do)—it’s ev / ry where / you want / to be. Notice the emphasis on every other syllable. It’s EV / ry WHERE / you WANT / to BE…da DUM, da DUM, da DUM, da DUM. This meter is iambic, defined by an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one. Iambic meter is commonly used in English poetry due to its natural rhythm.
- Taste the Rainbow
A great slogan evokes an emotional response. That response can be joy, excitement, inspiration, motivation, comfort, sentimentality, etc. Skittles’ call to action demands one embrace the childhood belief that you can touch a rainbow. And what’s even better than touching it? Popping a bright, colorful piece of happiness in your mouth. The phrase is short and sweet, and, above all, magical.
We know what you’re thinking—how can a slogan possibly meet all of these requirements? It doesn’t have to. But it should employ as many as possible. Notice how all of these hit the mark in multiple ways. Remember to keep it simple, engaging and, in the words of Shakespeare, “to thine own self be true.”