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How To Create A Great Tagline For Your Business (w/ Examples)


Neville


When talking about a "Tagline" for a business, you'll commonly hear some popular names cited such as:
Tagline examples of big companies
The taglines examples you'll see are typically that of ginormous brands.
But that's the problem with these examples...

 

They're all HUGE PUBLIC COMPANIES!


Billion dollar tagline brands
Every single one of these examples has been around for decades and is worth billions of dollars (here's a list of all the company slogans on the S&P 500), yet somehow people think their much smaller businesses should have equally vague brand taglines.
Well before we build our billion dollar brands, we might wanna start a little smaller:

 

 

 

 

The Evolution of a Tagline:


Let's you and I start a little side business together.  Let's see how our tagline may change as our company grows in size.
Notice how the tagline grows from a "descriptive tagline" into a more "aspirational tagline" here:
Evolution of a tagline
At that very beginning stage when we're at $0/year, having a vague tagline such as "Tell the world" will be relatively useless to us.
However once we start closing gigantic deals, have that fancy office on 5th Avenue in New York, and handle marketing for Fortune 500 brands.....then maybe "Tell the world" is a more appropriate tagline!
 
So yes, when you're at the level of a large business, your tagline will often be something short and clever and "aspirational."
However, if you're not there juuusst yet, here's a quick formula to follow:

 

 


 

 

Here's the 3-step process for creating a tagline:


Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences.
Step 2.) Trim it down.
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence.

 

 



The #1 best way to create a tagline for your business is to describe what you do in the shortest space possible.
This process is like trying to cram a large thought into a single Tweet.
Let's jump into some examples of how we would do this:

 

 

 
Sumo-Logo-300x55.png

Sumo Tagline Example: 


Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences:
"We create tools that go onto any webpage that help promote and share your website to get more traffic through several tools: Share buttons, Welcome Mats, Pop Up email collects, and more.  We make these tools really easy to use."
Step 2.) Trim it down:
"Tools that go onto your webpage to help promote and share your website to get more traffic."
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence:
"Tools to Grow Your Website’s Traffic."

 

 

 

 

 
wpengine-logo-png

WPengine Tagline Example:


Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences:
"It's really cheap to host a Wordpress site, but when something goes wrong, your host will be no where to be found. Also, Wordpress gets hacked if you don't upgrade it or choose poorly designed plugins." 
Step 2.) Trim it down:
"WPengine makes hosting a website on Wordpress super easy.  We're like the perfect website host."
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence:
"Wordpress hosting, perfected."

 

 

 

 

 
WeWork_logo

WeWork Tagline Example:


Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences:
"WeWork is a community space where people can co-work together or rent larger private offices.  We let you do what you love by providing fast internet access, bathroom facilities, coffee, beer, and meeting spaces."
Step 2.) Trim it down:
"A community space where you can focus on what you love doing, and we will handle all the hassles of running an office."
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence:
"Do what you love."


Think of your tagline like a "Headline For Your Business."
Your tagline will often be placed on things like:

 

 


  • Flyers

  • Stationary

  • Outdoor signs

  • Business cards

  • Website headers



  •  
  •  


These are items that have only a quick-shot at getting someone more interested.

 

 

For this reason, the only job of your tagline is to get attention and make your customer want to read/research more!

 

 

A note to people who have spent more than 2 hours of brain-time trying to "Come up with a great tagline":


Your tagline will unlikely be a big driver of business. Like....at all.
I've NEVER gone to McDonald's because "they had a cool tagline."
It's cause I want food stuffed into my face immediately.
I've never done business with a web designer because his tagline was clever like "Design for life."
I've never bought a car because the tagline was "Zoom Zoom."
Just remember....
no-one-buying-tagline
You should be focusing waaayy more of your time on:

  • The quality of your product.

  • Getting referrals from other people.

  • Getting feedback from customers.



  •  
  •  

THOSE are all things that will increase your business.
If you have spent more than two hours trying to come up with a tagline for your business, you are definitely focusing on the wrong thing.
Use the 3-Step Tagline Formula shown above, knock your tagline out, make sure it's not "too clever", and then focus on improving your business in REAL ways!


With all that said, I do respect some taglines floating around out there.
For example, here's my all time favorite tagline:
geico-tagline-example
Geico has gone through all sorts of cutesy characters as their "spokesman", but their tagline has remained the same:

 

 


"15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance."


This tagline kicks butt because it's jam-packed with important stuff....and only in about 10 words!
geico-tagline-example
Dang.....that Gecko knows what he's doing!
Let's just compare this brilliant Geico tagline to a few of their top competitors in the insurance space....Statefarm and Allstate:
Insurance Tagline Examples
I mean, without having previous experience knowing what these companies do…..would you have ANY clue what they sell based off their tag lines?? No.
Bravo Geico. Your tagline could be used for a $100/year insurance business or a $50Billion/year insurance business.
So remember, use the 3-Step Tagline Formula from above to create a quick tagline and description for your own business:
The 3-Step Tagline Formula
Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences.
Step 2.) Trim it down.
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence.

 

 

 


Watch this video guide on How To Create A Great Tagline:

 
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P.S. See every slogan from the S&P 500 here (all the slogans from the top 500 companies).
P.P.S. Try running your own business through the 3-step process for creating a tagline:
Step 1.) Dump out your entire business in a few sentences.
Step 2.) Trim it down.
Step 3.) Trim it down to one short sentence.

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. Leave a comment below with your own tagline!

 


User Feedback

Recommended Comments



Guest Neville

Posted

Hey Winson, great 1st try.....but there's one big thing I'm missing:

BENEFITS.

Can you maybe sprinkle some benefits into WHY people would want new lights?

Maybe like:

"We help new home owners find the right lights for their new home that can save them between 40% and 85% on their electricity bill every year."

See how just adding some benefit in can really add to the message?

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Guest Teresa

Posted

There is a company that takes four different images of a tumor while the surgeon is operating and, using proprietary software, overlays those four images (near infrared, spectroscopy, x-ray, and anatomic) so that the surgeon gets 100% of the tumor. No chemo or radiation required. The current tagline is awful, "Envision the Possibilities." It's an aspirational tagline, not descriptive. I've been playing with the idea of foursight/foresight for the four views. I'm also reminded of the old World Book encyclopedias that had those overlays of the human anatomy e.g., skeleton, muscles, nerves. The significant different with this technology is that the views are different, real-time, and layered by the software. But, the word layer could also mean depth in medical terms, which could give the wrong idea. So, I have "Four-in-one view of tumors improves your surgical outcomes." It seems unwieldy and too long. Open to any ideas you may have.
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Guest Neville

Posted

It kind of sucks!

It's so generic. Can you maybe add some cool stats that'll set you apart?

Like:

We are mobile game developers in India that's done over 120 games that have over 500,000 daily played. We do both 2D and 3D games for a super competitive price. And by the way, we only make AWESOME stuff.

I know that doesn't sound "cool"....but it's very functional.

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Guest Neville

Posted

Hmmmm....I'm really digging the first version you wrote!

It seems since you are still a small company, that first description is the best!

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Guest Andrew

Posted

1) We're a digital marketing and advertising firm that helps hospitals and clinics with their advertising, marketing, CRM management, funnel development, etc. Ultimately we help them get more patients to self refer. (Patient referral as opposed to a doctor referral). We have a strong focus on digital, but also do off-line ad work.

2) We help hospitals and clinics fill open appointments with

patient-referrals through digital marketing.

3) Healthcare advertising.

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Guest Neville

Posted

Hey Teresa, sounds like a really helpful piece of software.

It sounds like MOST of the business coming to this company is going to be from trade shows or sales reps or word of mouth.....not the tagline.

So it might be ok to have a more "aspirational" tagline on this one.

Here's my thoughts:

--"A complete view"

--"Get the FULL view"

--"Better imaging. Better lives."

--"See 100%"

--"Don't operate blind."

--"Get the full scope."

--"See everything"

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Guest Neville

Posted

Holy moly Andrew, that's a lot of buzzwords!

You may wanna simplify it to something like:

"Patients will love you so much, they'll tell all their friends."

--or--

"35% of referrals are through past patients. We'll double that."

 

If you're using strong buzzwords like "social media" and "healthcare advertising", those almost make it counterproductive as they are WAY too vague.

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Guest Teresa

Posted

You are spot on. It will be trade shows, sales reps.

Do you take creativity supplements? Where can I buy them?

Thanks so much for your feedback.

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Guest Tim Lambros

Posted

2 hours to figure this out? After reading this outstanding post, I came up with:

I offer risk free, fee neutral and tax efficient retirement savings,

3 things everyone wants but nobody thinks is possible!

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Guest Neville

Posted

Hahahah....trust me, I've seen teams spend weeks on this stuff, and lots of wantrepreneurs get OBSESSED over finding their "perfect tagline."
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Guest Gerard Dawson

Posted

Ok, thanks for the feedback. This is the revision...

"Learn new strategies for using technology to improve your students' literacy skills.

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Guest Michael

Posted

Neville!

I'm a digital marketing consultant and lead generation specialist.

I help service professionals get clients with online marketing (e.g. PPC, email marketing, website marketing).

Zappy Go Lucky is the name of my business (with "Zappy" playing off of my last name).

How about these:

1) “New Internet Leads in a Zap!”

OR

2) “Call on Zappy to Get (Internet) Clients Snappy!”

(Not sure whether to put the "Internet" in there... and "clients" could be "leads" to make it punchier.)

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Guest Denise Renee

Posted

Hey Nev,

Love the 3 step formula - of course, step 3 is the hardest for me, hehehe! I think another thing that makes Geico's tag line amazing is that it is a hell of a brand promise that also doubles as their USP!

Your post came at a great time as I have been working on revising my own USP/Tagline/elevator pitch in the last week or two. So since you offered to take a look (and I appreciate you for doing so), here goes.

Here's my step one:

"The Derenco Agency creates copy and content marketing strategies that generates more pre-qualified leads and closes more sales for personality based brands such as coaches, authors, licensed professionals and independent distributors. We also create marketable resumes for professionals that expertly positions their transferable skills for the new direction they want to take their career in."

I'll spare you step two and get to step three. I'm tossing up two final options for my tagline:

"Creating the “write” words to help personal brands profit."

or

"Creating the “write” words to position and promote personal brands."

 

I'm quite partial to the first one because the word "profit" signifies quantifiable results that everyone wants, whether it is the company (getting more leads and closing more sales) or the career professional (getting a higher paying job).

What do you think?

Thanks :)

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Guest Conrad Deas

Posted

Helping Men Become Better Men, So They Can Build Better Marriages
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Guest Neville

Posted

Hmmmm, I actually like the tagline you have on your website better:

"Your 30 Day Action Plan to Become a Better Man and Build a Better Marriage"

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Guest Neville

Posted

Hey Denise!

Well.......I like your first run, but the problem is it's just SO generic. Everyone promises to write the "right words to double your sales" and stuff like that.

Try talking like a human on this one (I know you can)! Instead of:

"....we create marketable resumes for professionals that expertly positions their transferable skills for the new direction they want to take their career in.”

Maybe transition it to something more benefit driven like:

"After a one-hour consultation, your resume will pop to the top of HR's resume list. We use our insider knowledge of hiring software and writing smart copy to do this. 9/10 of our applicants double the amount of call-backs they get after us."

.....basically describe it like you would to a friend sitting across from you. The 2nd and 3rd taglines you wrote were trying to be TOO clever. You can use them, but just know THAT is not what's gonna be bringing in the money!!

Synopsis: I think you should add more concrete benefits in (use numbers, real examples, past clients results etc).

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Guest Andrew

Posted

Ok, it does have some buzz to it, I'll give you that.

[clarification]

And, just to be clear, a patient referral is someone who refers themselves rather than anyone (doctor, friend, whatever) referring them. For example, you have an ingrown toenail and you know it so you call up the local podiatrist and make an appointment. You (the patient) have referred yourself. It's an term the audience will get (since they invented it). Ok, that's all. :)

[/clarification]

How about:

Vena: Get more patient referrals.

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Guest Neville

Posted

BAHAHAH!!

1.) Your name is ZAPPY which is highly unusual.

2.) I think the 2nd version you created was SO unusual and funny, that you could use it!

However like the article suggest, just having a clever tagline won't bring in clients on it's own.....but it did make me laugh, and therefore pay more attention :)

I would keep the "internet" instead of "leads". It sounds better.

Great job Michael!

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Neville, I have a group of inline investment programs that I'll be launching and I read your email about creating taglines.

Let me know what you think of these:

Pension Capital Recovery Program

recreate the nest egg

The Equity Curve

higher yield returns within reach

The Yield

earn more with the blockchain

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UhOh!

We are a scuba and snorkeling center.

Our tagline is "Changing Lives Since 1981"

We've been around a while so I thought this conveyed how people feel once they start scuba diving (and snorkeling). Now I'm not sure if it's too vague???

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Guest 5 Copywriting Hacks Designed to Give Your Business a Boost - AZ Franchising | Franchising dalla A alla Z

Posted

[…] Neville is that you don’t need to be clever, you need to be clear. Neville showed me how to create a tagline using a three-step process for creating one that sound more […]
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Guest Copywriting Exercises: Best Ways To Get Better At Copywriting :: Kopywriting Kourse

Posted

[…] Kind of like cramming in words to a Tweet.  I show a 3-step formula for this in my how to create a tagline article. […]
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This is great stuff, not only to create the tagline itself, but have something more defined to say when someone asks "what do you do?" I always struggle with that. Thanks Neville!
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Guest Raisul Kabir

Posted

Hi Neville,

This is very nice advice. When I was reading books on these, I always hated when people gave the example of Nike and say why it's great. I never liked those. But, you explained it so beautifully, really nice man!!

So, I practiced, wanted to share with you my result. what do you think?

Step 1 - Our company is Brain Station-23. We provide outsourcing software development service. Our key differentiating factor is talent, we find, hire, retain, grow talented brains who make better software for enterprise and database driven web and mobile applications.

Step 2 - Software outsourcing company by talented brains making better software for enterprise web and mobile applications

Step 3 - Brain Station-23, Where brains meet to make better web & mobile software

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