The breakfast of champions. +Wheaties

In terms of value per word, your tagline is the most valuable piece of copy your brand will ever have.

A worthwhile tagline, or slogan, will grab attention, showcase your value, and shows consumers or clients why they should do business with you.

A tagline is a tricky thing. You know it’s well-done when people show positive interest. When it’s not, it’s a lost opportunity and a potential liability.

From years of experimenting with valuable real estate that is a tagline, here are three things you should vehemently avoid when crafting a tagline.

Top Tagline Mistakes

It’s Not All About You

We know you want to explain your entire business in a few words. But don’t get lost in the details.

Brands assume that their ideal customers care about their business as much as the business does. No. That’s usually wrong.

Your prospective customers want to understand how you can help them in a manner of ways. In other words, what’s in it for them? Are you going to save the customer money? Are you going to provide top-notch service? Are you going to deliver unique expertise?

Put yourself in the perspective of your customers. Keep it relevant and relatable to appealing to needs and pain points. Provide a resolution. This helps your tagline become engaging and effective.

Say It In Layman’s Terms

Did you know? We develop advanced processing systems to achieve information dominance. Could you say that again in English?

Technical terms and jargon are common in every industry, but they aren’t the common language to the everyday passer-by. Most likely, these terms don’t need to be used in short-form marketing.

While insider terminology is ingrained in your brain, the place and time for it is with colleagues – or to attempt to impress your next date. Insider terms are not designed for taglines.

Prospective customers are usually moving from one thing to the next. If there’s a competitor who can explain their value proposition clearly and quickly, they will choose them.

Keep your language direct and straightforward. When you’re speaking broadly about your business, use short, common words. Try reading them out loud. If anything sounds out of place in a spoken conversation, chances are, you have an opportunity to be more direct.

We deliver. +UPS

Make It Moldable

This is going to be everywhere. A tagline can be on billboards, commercials, digital platforms, and your campus headquarters’ sign (dream big), so make sure it’s easily readable and recognizable.

Copywriters, don’t forget your designers. You want to make sure the length of the text can suit a variety of mediums. If your brand requires a version of your logo that includes your tagline, ensure that everything still looks proportional.

Most importantly, keep trying, keep brainstorming. It takes a few tries to boil down your brand’s value to a few words that pack a punch. Keep these tips in mind as you’re drafting, and look for inspiration from successful brands.

Maybe she was born with it. Maybe it’s Maybelline. +Maybelline