Boring brands and Taglines thereof

If you are someone who follows advertising, or any other form of brand communication, its hard to miss the ubiquitousness of taglines, in these times. It seems as though every brand needs to have, atleast one, if not two or more lines that can be used depending on the context.

First, there is the brand’s signature tagline, which is meant to be used along with the brand in every context, or almost everywhere. This is meant to sort of be a compact communicator of everything that the brand should stand for. So you have a Wipro “Applying Thought” or a Britannia’s “Eat Healthy, Think Better”. In the above two cases, it is a corporate brand, and then individual brands, for e.g. a Good Day which says “Goodness and Nutrition”.

Now, all this is very fine, but perhaps there comes a time, when there are only so many words in a category that advertisers and advertising agencies are able to find. Combine this with the fact that now brands need not only a brand tagline but also catchy lines for every single ad, or ad series, and you really are introduced to some pretty mundane combinations.

Sooner or later then, taglines seem become little more than insipid puns with very little substance, or content which would render them memorable to the viewer. Some recent ones I saw :

Essenza di Wills – a new perfume from the Wills brand, signs off saying, “Your Essence Your Soul”. Yes, yes, we know that perfume is also called Essence, and how clever of you and all that. But. I really don’t see how a new perfume, and a relatively unknown one at that, can claim to have anything to do with my soul. Is the brand trying to say that its fantastic fragrance captures the soul of a woman ? Or it is the soul of a woman ? I give up.

Indo-Asian Electricals – I haven’t heard of this company before, but apparently they make switches, lighting equipment etc. They bring in this rather grand statement, “Power is Joy”. Sure its great to not be in the middle of a power cut, and power does do a lot of things. But I don’t see how it says anything about them, beyond the basic fact that they offer something to do with electricals.

Femina – I always thought their Woman of Substance was a great line, it was succinct and it made the reader feel good about picking up this magazine. Who didn’t want to be a woman of substance ? Since then Femina has ofcourse degenerated into a fluff magazine with little more than ads and pretty faces, the brand’s tagline has also degenerated into a sort of vacuous “Believe”, which really doesn’t say anything. Its so open ended that it can mean anything at all, which is not necessarily a good thing.

Some good ones that make sense, give the reader a good hook relating to the brand –

HSBC – The World’s local bank, Distinctive and clear benefit
L’Oreal – Because you’re worth it – Its really old, but it still appeals to every woman, and repetition has probably only made it stronger.

What are your favorites?

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9 Comments

  1. not gave much thought into what i like best.. but i agree lines like’ you are worth it makes u want to be worth it & buy it”

    waiting for the new business update that u promised

  2. A little bit more, little bit more..funky tunes, hip youngsters dance across the TV screen. My new fav TV ad makes me want to sing, sprint and swirl in my head but i remain on the couch breathing evenly. The tagline after the action is “Expect more, pay less”. Great ad, solid tagline, wrong product?

  3. Itchy – some of the cosmetic brands have really dinned it into our head ! the new business plan is still shaping up…you’ll hear more when its taken some shape, promise !

    de mi – what product was this for ? sometimes you do see great ads for a product that may just not be meant for you , but atleast they are fun to watch !

  4. haven’t given much thought except that it is good to watch.But your post has made me curious.will check and choose.

  5. that comes to my mind right now:

    Sony’s “Like.No.Other”
    Smirnoff’s “Life is calling, where are you?”

    like em.

  6. Sony and Smirnoff are both catchy enough…though, Smirnoff I feel doesn’t *really* stand out…

  7. I like the Nike one; but my fave are the Carlsberg ones. ‘Possibly the best beer in the world’ or some such thing. And they adapt their ads to suit every possible occasion. Neat!

    Loved that quip re essence of your soul. Brought to mind the cheapo knockoffs one gets in the tacky stores – S Ve Sekar made a really funny (Well, it was when I was 13!) about them.

  8. What about the mastercard ads, I think they have great appeal too.

  9. Oh yes, I like the Mastercard ads – they make the product seem important, but in a quite subtle way….


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