What Makes a Good Slogan? » The S3 Agency

What Makes a Good Slogan?

We all know that advertising slogans are the short phrases used in campaigns that capture targets’ attention, but do we know what makes a great, ageless slogan? A memorable slogan is like a good song – it sticks and plays back in your mind, making it hard to wipe out. It should grab immediate attention, affect emotions and attitudes, and act as an incentive to take action.

One of the most recognizable slogans is Wheaties – “The Breakfast of Champions” –which was Introduced in 1927 via billboard at a minor league ballpark and is still being used today. While there is no exact science to produce a successful slogan, simplicity, thoughtfulness, and impact are key ingredients. Memorable slogans tend to possess:

  • Longevity: enduring the test of time 
  • Equity: becoming synonymous with the company or product 
  • Portability & Memorability: ability to influence culture media and language
  • Originality: breaking new ground in the industry 

An established slogan can be almost irreplaceable. In the 1990s, Maxwell House changed their slogan after three-quarters of a century to “Better beans make better coffee” in an effort to position their brand as the quality choice. Fail. Recently, the company again tried to expand with the slogan, “Good just got great.” Also a miss, largely because, Maxwell House is still known as the coffee that is “Good to the Last Drop” – positioned this way by Theodore Roosevelt in 1917, a testament of enduring power.

Test your slogan knowledge and match some of these slogan Hall of Famers to their brands!

1. Reach Out and Touch Someone
2. Diamonds Are Forever
3. Where’s the Beef?
4. Maybe She’s Born With It
5. 99.44% Pure
6. It Takes a Licking and Keeps on Ticking
7. Great Taste Less Filling 
8. We Try Harder 
9. The Quicker Picker-Upper 
10. Think. Different. 
11. They’re Gr-r-reat! 
12. We Bring Good Things to Life 
13. Just Do It 
14. Don’t leave Home Without It 
15. The San Francisco Treat 

{Spoiler alert! Scroll down to see answers.}

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1. AT&T
2. De Beers
3. Wendy’s
4. Maybelline
5. Ivory Soap
6. Timex
7. Miller Lite
8. Avis
9. Bounty
10. Apple Computer
11. Frosted Flakes
12. GE (General Electric)
13. Nike 
14. American Express
15. Rice-A-Roni

– Meredith Aman, Account Supervisor, The S3 Agency

Team S3
info@thes3agency.com
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