Monthly Archives: August 2012

Slogans vs taglines. In a digital world, what works best for food products?

Slogans ruled in the “golden age” of advertising: “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight” (FedEx), “Strong enough for a man, but made for a woman” (Secret deodorant), “With a name like Smucker’s, it has to be good” (Smucker’s, of course). Given a generous number of words, slogans can make statements about a brand that connect and stick with consumers.

In the current “post-golden age” of advertising, taglines rule. What’s the difference? About five words on average. Some taglines from the abbreviated, digital world we live and work in:  “Drive one” (Ford), “Rethink possible” (AT&T), “Pursuing perfection” (Lexus). With only 2-3 words, taglines are a real creative challenge and many of them don’t really get the job done in connecting the brand with the consumer.

Sometimes a tagline can be greatly improved by adding a single word. Nike didn’t stop at “Do it”, they decided to “Just do it”, which pushes the emotional button to get up and get moving. BMW is more than “The driving machine”, it’s “The ultimate driving machine”.

Taglines are an important tool in effective branding for all types of products, including food and beverage. Word count is far less important than impact. “Got Milk?”, “The Un-Cola”, “The King of Beers”, “It’s The Real Thing”, “Where’s The Beef?”, “Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hand”. When we hear or see these, we know the brands that own them. A solid, memorable tagline can be a real brand builder.

Great taglines share some common traits. Memorability. Easy recall. Simplicity. Ownability.  Longevity. Absolute relevance. Brand attitude. Very few successful taglines have all of these traits, but the ones that are the “stickiest” have most of them. It’s important to work with an experienced creative team to develop a tagline and branding strategy. Taglines can only create memorable brands if they are consistently used on all levels and channels of brand communication.

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Great old brands never die. They refresh.

Even well established, very successful food and beverage brands and products can begin to lose their appeal. When that happens, truly great brands and products can most often be resuscitated by a brand refresh. These four time tested approaches still work wonders if they are well planned and executed.

Remind consumers why you’re a great brand. Brands achieve their positive image over time through investments in advertising, marketing, and promotions. A visit to the advertising archives may be in order. Look for the ads and campaigns that worked well, consider creative revisions to achieve current relevance, and run them again, utilizing the array of new media channels. This is a great way to remind consumers of how good you always have been and how good you still are.

Reformulate the brand’s products. Food and beverage brands that are known and trusted by consumers for their quality and performance can sometimes benefit from product reformulations that respond to current consumer taste trends, nutritional enhancements, and convenience in preparation and serving. Reintroducing a “new and improved” product from an established great older brand is not nearly as daunting a task as introducing a new brand and product line. Give your brand loyalists something new to talk about and share.

Refresh the brand logo. While there is value in great older brand logos, sometimes they can look dated and out-of-touch, particularly to younger consumers. A logo refresh can add relevance and vitality to brands. There is one caution: don’t stray too far from the original. There are many examples of established brands that became unrecognizable to their loyal consumer base through logo refresh efforts that actually became outright logo redesigns.

Redesign the packaging. Great older brands and products may simply need a “change of wardrobe”. Redesigned food and beverage packaging provides the opportunity to visually reestablish brand relevance and generate consumer appeal at the shelf-level. Updated front-of-package nutritional information, updated recipes and product applications, easier to use and store package configurations, new package sizes, and brand differentiating graphics should all be considered in a packaging redesign effort. As long as the basic brand identity remains in tact, brand loyalists will easily find you on the shelf while potential new consumers may be more attracted to the brand as a result of the packaging make-over.

For more information on how Taste Advertising, Branding, Packaging can help you with a brand logo refresh or packaging redesign, please contact us.

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