I recently rewatched Doug Pray’s excellent 2009 advertising documentary, ART & COPY and the thing that still sticks in my craw is, “Got Milk.” It is a remarkable tagline. Forget the bad grammar, the difficulty I have with digesting lactose, and the millions of thieves out there that have co-opted the “Got” message to sell us everything from vacations to religion – two words that instantly mean something to almost everyone is an amazing accomplishment. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but sadly all the imitators have turned the message into an instant eye roll.
It helps that everyone in the world knows what milk is. You have to use more than two words in a tagline if you have to hint a description of what the product is. You can’t say, “Got X?” if X is a product that no one’s ever heard of.
At StudioConover we often get the opportunity to develop taglines for the products and services we brand and it is one of my favorite things. We all work together to unravel what sometimes seems like an elaborate word puzzle. You need to deliver the brand promise cleverly and concisely. It needs to clearly communicate but also have something special that makes you remember it. You can see some great examples of what we’ve done in the re:name section of studioconover.com.
This all makes me think of the advertising for the film Citizen Kane. The posters all had a big tagline that says, “It’s Terrific!!” Doesn’t describe a damn thing. No one remembers it, but, then again, they don’t have to.
For more information about branding strategies, taglining and naming, visit StudioConover