How to find the right strapline for your business

Good things come to those who wait. It does exactly what it says on the tin. Every little helps. These are just a few phrases we may find ourselves quoting during everyday conversations, sometimes unwittingly, yet they’re also the straplines of well-established brands. Can you name them?

A poll conducted by a track advertising company once revealed that 80 per cent of Brits reference such straplines (or slogans, if you prefer) regularly. Research also showed that 37 per cent of people would be more likely to buy a product if it used a catchy strapline.

Crafting the perfect one is a marketer’s dream. Multinational companies are willing to throw a lot of money at wordsmiths who can capture the essence of whatever they’re about in as few words as possible. However, it would be fair to say SMEs are not afforded the same opportunity.

Tight budgets often means that smaller businesses may have to think up their straplines in-house. But this isn’t a bad things by any means. After all, no one knows a company’s mission and values more than its own staff. We asked three businesses for their thoughts and experiences about what their strapline does for them.

Raising the Baa - 'Building the best team in your field'

Raising the Baa offers team-building courses involving sheep. According to the company’s director Caroline Palmer, their strapline – 'Building the best team in your field' – identifies and addresses a problem that their target market experience.

"Practically every company’s literature and website declares that their people are their greatest asset, but how many people actually put money where their mouth is and invest in people?" she says.

Palmer adds that all businesses want to be the best in their field and taking staff away from the work environment and into another type of field entirely – in this case, one full of woolly animals – can improve business morale and prompt radical changes in the ways teams work together. So, the strapline, which came to her whilst she was out running, makes both literal and metaphorical sense.

City executives, retail companies including IKEA, and banks such as Nationwide, are just a few that have learnt from a flock of sheep since Raising the Baa’s launch in 2012.

"To use the cliche, I feel our strapline does exactly what it says on the tin."

Read: Multisensory branding - immersing all five senses

Red Paddle Co – 'Explore your world'

 According to Luke Green, digital media manager at the watersports company Red Paddle Co, their strapline 'Explore your world' has enabled them to stand above the competition by using a message that resonates with customers.

"We are a premium product in our market and as such we need to offer a reason to purchase over cheaper and inferior ones. Most people coming into stand-up paddleboarding aren’t aware of the technological differences between brands, so we started a conversation that would keep customers engaged."

Red Paddle Co looked to pull customers in by impressing on them that their boards can help them improve their lifestyle by getting out on the water and exploring the world.

"This can be completely relatable to every individual, be that exploring the coastline, paddling on a lake, or down a river or canal. It gives them ownership, meaning what they do with the product is up to their imagination," says Green. "Our previous strapline was something similar – ‘go anywhere, do anything’ – but it lacked the personal relevance to the customer to get any real traction."

Venn Digital – 'Business results from creative minds'

"A strapline not only needs to convey a feeling, but also give a clear statement about what it is you offer," says Andrew Akesson, head of digital at marketing agency Venn Digital.

"Take our company. Our offering isn’t clear from the brand name, but our strapline 'Business results from creative minds' gives people an indication that we are creatives that work to help clients get an ROI."

Akesson adds that the challenge for the majority of SMEs is that their USP is never going to jump out at potential customers the way that Nike or Coca Cola’s does, regardless of how short and snappy the strapline is. So therefore it’s important not to be too clever and try and match the wit of big brands, but to simply remain true to the business’ mission and values. 

This is a guest blog and may not represent the views of Virgin.com. Please see virgin.com/terms for more details. Thumbnail from gettyimages.

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