Slogans set your business apart. Learn how to write a slogan, why they’re important, and how to design standout business materials with them.
Ads are everywhere. Roadside billboards, social media, websites, text messages, emails—ads have even invaded the smartphone games we use to distract ourselves when other ads interrupt our favorite TV programs. Sometimes these ads can truly capture our attention through an image or a catchy slogan.
For visually-minded creatives, logos may be your go-to idea when you think of branded design items. Still, memorable slogans, catchphrases, or taglines are also essential. For example, what pops into your head when you hear these phrases?
- Just do it.
- Because you’re worth it.
- Melts in your mouth, not in your hand.
- America runs on . . .
This article will tackle how to create and design graphics with a slogan that captures your audience. It will examine the following:
- Slogans versus taglines: What are the differences?
- Why do slogans matter?
- How to write your business’s slogan
- How does a slogan work with an overall branding kit?
- How do I use a tagline in social media?
- Taglines, influencers, and marketing missteps to avoid
Slogans Versus Taglines: What Are the Differences?
The words slogan and tagline are often used interchangeably. Technically, there is a difference. A tagline is often a saying that serves a company for a short period of time. A slogan, however, is the longstanding motto that encapsulates the company’s voice, heart, and soul. While it may change, a slogan’s longevity usually separates it from its tagline counterpart.
Some companies never settle on a single slogan, choosing instead to change their narrative constantly. McDonald’s is an excellent example of this. While their golden arches and red-headed clown have remained relatively consistent, their tagline has frequently changed. Though the complete list is extensive, here’s a condensed version of their tagline history:
- Look for the Golden Arches! (1960–1967)
- The closest thing to home (1966–1969)
- McDonald’s is your kind of place (1967–1971)
- You deserve a break today (1971–1975)
- Nobody can do it like McDonald’s can (1979–1981)
- You deserve a break today (1981–1983)
- McDonald’s and you (1982– 1984)
- It’s a good time for the great taste of McDonald’s (1984–1988)
- The good time, great taste of McDonald’s (1988–1990)
- Do you believe in magic? (1992 – 1997)
- Did somebody say McDonald’s? (1997–2000)
- We love to see you smile (2000–2003)
- (ba, da, ba, ba, ba) I’m lovin’ it (2003–present)
Each of these taglines said something different about the company. In the early years, they focused on the idea of homemade food away from home. Then they slowly changed to focus more on taste, fun, and overall happiness.
Why Do Slogans Matter?
Imagine you have two minutes to pitch your business idea. To sum up everything your business does, you must first ask yourself:
- What can you say to capture attention?
- What makes your business or product different from every competitor?
That succulent message is often referred to as an elevator pitch. For books, it’s the summary on the back. When it comes to products, it’s the write-up on the website. For a business, this is the starting point of developing a slogan.
Your slogan is part of your overall brand and content marketing plan. It encapsulates who your company is and what they do in the simplest way possible. This messaging must be consistent across all social media platforms, ads, websites, newsletters, business cards, and even your email signature. Let’s get into how to develop it, then how to use it.
How to Write a Slogan for Your Business
There’s a simple strategy you can use to write a slogan. First, summarize the goal of your company. Perhaps it is something like:
- We make swimming pools.
- We clean toilets.
- I walk dogs.
Next, write a sentence about how you want to make people feel when they think of your brand:
- We make people happy.
- We give you your time back.
- We relieve the fear of coming home to a pet mess on the floor if the owner gets stuck in traffic.
Then combine those ideas.
- We make swimming pools that make people happy.
- We clean toilets so you can do what you want to with your weekend.
- I walk dogs, so you don’t have to worry about enjoying happy hour after work.
Once you have these down to a simple message, punch them up a notch.
- Sluder Swimming Pools: Reconnecting families, one summer at a time.
- Pool Sharks: Swim. Smile. Repeat.
- Maid to Order: Get your weekend back.
- Home Keeper: A chore-free weekend is a phone call away.
- Doug’s Dog Walking: Your best friend’s second-best friend.
- Puppy’s Pal: Relax. We have Fido covered.
Can’t you easily imagine all of these slogans on a billboard, social banner, or Instagram post? Now that you understand how to create a catchy slogan like these, let’s look into how to incorporate slogans into your branding.
How Does a Slogan Fit Into Your Brand Kit?
A brand kit includes all of your brand assets, such as logos, icons, and brand colors, in a single bundle. Shutterstock Create helps you design with all these branded elements in one location. Once you write a slogan for your business, you can incorporate your branded design elements and slogan into a variety of editable templates. These pre-made templates help you design for Facebook posts, Instagram stories, YouTube thumbnails, Instagram posts, logo designs, invitations, flyers, YouTube channel art, Facebook page covers, posters, greeting cards, Twitter posts, presentations, brochures, Facebook ads, and business cards.
For example, let’s look at a premade Facebook template. You can start with the image provided, then change the font, colors, picture, and text to create something completely on-brand for you. Customized templates are easily editable to communicate your business’ slogan and services.
Both of these examples have the same template and slogans, but completely different feelings, thanks to their designs.
Create makes it easy to experiment with how to develop the look and feel of your slogan. Try out different fonts. Use various colors and font weights to see which ones truly embody your brand. Since Create is free, your experimentation is truly unlimited! Use that to your advantage when figuring out how to best communicate your brand’s slogans, taglines, and general offerings.
Final Thoughts on Slogans and Taglines
Slogans and taglines should not be overwhelming. Whether you choose to be flexible with your wording like McDonald’s, or consistent and timeless like Nike, developing branding should be fun. Surround yourself with creative people, consider what your target audience will respond to, and create slogan-centric graphics for a good first impression.
Find even more ways to grow your business:
License this cover image via everything bagel.