10 Best Slogans of All Time
Other Lessons in This Course
- The 10 Best Branding Slogans of All Time
- 20 of Our Most Unusual Promotional Products
- Top 10 Advertising Jingles of All Time
- The 10 Best Branding Slogans of All Time
- History of TV Ads
- How Did the Frisbee Get its Name?
- What are the Different Versions of USB
- Types of USB Flash Memory
- How to Motivate and Retain Your Employees
- Different Types of Portable Chargers
Some of the best promotional products are imprinted with a slogan or tagline. Why? Because a good slogan is memorable enough to not only launch a product's sales, but also send a brand soaring right into the pop culture stratosphere. And who doesn't want their brand to be memorable and talked about until the end of time? Find branding inspiration for your business and check out some of history's best catchphrases!
What's in a Slogan?
A great promotional slogan (or tagline) is short, catchy, and memorable. It contains only a few words, yet it's incredibly difficult to produce, and there's no magic formula for producing one (much to the relief of gainfully employed marketers everywhere).
Every quality tagline shares a few common details. The best slogans of all time fuel our imaginations, make us think, and often possess a "feel good" factor. Interestingly enough, they rarely mention the product or business actually being promoted. Instead, an outstanding slogan engages audiences and inspires people to associate it with the brand behind it, although in some cases, the slogans can be more popular than the brand itself. In fact, many brands create taglines that are so successful and unforgettable that they become slogans for life in general. Seriously, children of the '80s, how many times did you ask somebody where the beef was?
Some of the best taglines are still used by their respective parties today, even though they were launched decades ago. In fact, these often find their way onto promotional products. While it could be called "retro," we prefer the phrase "staying power." The slogans we discuss here are some of the most successful advertising efforts in history!
1) "A Diamond is Forever"
This deceptively-simple advertising slogan was launched by the De Beers Diamond Company in 1938 as the headline for what would become one of longest-running marketing campaigns of all time. Those four little words - a diamond is forever - suggest a sense of timeless romanc, which is associated with the diamonds sold by De Beers. The De Beers Diamond Company remains one of the largest diamond suppliers in the world, possibly because of this solid, sparkly slogan.
2) "Just Do It"
In 1988, a struggling sportswear company called Nike introduced this memorable line into its advertising and soon catapulted to the front of the pack. This quality slogan brims with attitude and captures the defiant and determined mentality that's required of successful fitness enthusiasts and sports stars. "Just Do It" is a bold statement that inspires athletes to work harder, a no-nonsense call to action that audiences instantly associate with Nike's apparel and accessories. It also serves as encouragement to customers when they're looking at Nike merchandise, credit card in hand.
3) "Got Milk?"
This ad campaign, created by Goodby Silverstein & Partners, debuted in 1993 as a message from the California Milk Processor Board to encourage people to drink more milk. Its simple tagline was accompanied by witty commercial situations, attractive stars wearing milk mustaches, and stadium cups emblazoned with the short-but-sweet slogan. This campaign demonstrated the power of straightforward messages that are easy for consumers to remember. It also demonstrated the power of showing beautiful celebrities sporting hilarious milk mustaches in getting people to believe that milk really does a body good.
4) "Where's the Beef?"
This marketing campaign, created for Wendy's by Saatchi & Saatchi, captured the frustrations of every fast food patron in the 1980s. Although this top-ten tagline was intended to poke fun at competitors' beef-lacking burgers, the catch phrase rapidly became a symbol for everything lacking in substance and quality, from student essays to company budgets. While the campaign ran for only a few years, the wildly popular slogan endured and took on a life of its own.
5) "Great Taste, Less Filling"
Beer might not seem like a difficult sell, but Miller Brewing Company faced an uphill battle when its light brew was initially introduced. For years, beer had been marketed primarily to the more macho corner of the market. How could Miller introduce a concept like low-calorie beer to such a crowd? In 1975, an ad agency called McCann-Erickson Worldwide neatly solved this problem through a few advertisements. The new commercials depicted beefy, athletic men doing what beefy, athletic men were believed to do often in those days: fighting, in this case, over either the "tastes great" side or the "less filling" side of the quality tagline. The struggle allowed Miller to maintain its masculine image, and the slogan found its way onto Miller merchandise like beer koozies and boxer shorts.
6) "Don't Leave Home Without It"
American Express launched this campaign, created by Ogilvy & Mather, in 1975. The slogan was intended to establish traveler's cheques and traveler's check cards as essential accessories for daily life, right up there with the house keys. Since its release, this catchy tagline has been quoted, parodied, and repeated so often that it has worked its way into the American lexicon, with people everywhere holding up important objects and urging friends and family not to leave home without them.
7) "Melts In Your Mouth, Not in Your Hand"
Coined by ad man Rosser Reeves and introduced by M&Ms in 1954, this enduring slogan has real appeal to consumers of all ages. It addresses a problem that every kid faces when they're eating their favorite candy and every parent laments when it's time to do laundry. This slogan's simple truth reminds parents and children worldwide what's so appealing about these tiny treats. Even though M&Ms has since changed product taglines, and it's now creepy to think of the humanized M&M characters melting in people's mouths, audiences still easily recognize and identify this timeless slogan.
8) "Does She... or Doesn't She?"
Clairol first used this mysterious tagline in 1957. This slogan worked to liberate women from traditional ideas of beauty (because wearing a hat all the time just produces hat head), and ended up being one of the most successful slogans of all time. Clairol aimed to remove the stigma of hair coloring by introducing a new line of more natural-looking color. The answer to the slogan's question, as written by Foote, Cone & Belding, was: "Hair color so natural, only her hairdresser knows for sure." Rarely do companies want their products to be unnoticeable. With this tagline, Clairol embraced the mystique.
9) "You're in Good Hands with Allstate"
Sometimes, employees better understand how to present a company than any marketer could. This simple yet firm slogan, written by an Allstate Insurance Company salesperson in 1956, was intended to depict a strong and trustworthy institution committed to its customers. Needless to say, the company tagline was a success—Allstate still uses it in their commercials and advertisements, and people still associate it with its original source.
10) "We Try Harder"
Rent-A-Car launched a new advertising campaign in 1963 that featured this tagline written by Bill Bernbach of DDB. Bernbach suggested that Avis shift its focus to customer service, a monumental decision, and a slogan like "We Try Harder" reinforced that focus. The idea that a company would focus not on sounding established and successful but on searching for ways to improve took guts, especially for a company that had been considered second place to car-rental giant Hertz. That approach not only made Avis successful and established them as worthy competitors, but it still drives them, even today.
A good slogan needs only a few words. With the right few words, though, it can tap into one of the many forces that motivate your customers: curiosity, hope, fear, happiness, you name it. Once you have a message that resonates, you'll not only have a great-looking tagline to use in all of your advertising materials. You'll also have a catchphrase that, with any luck, will keep your brand name in the hearts and minds of customers for years to come.