A post by Roger Pynn a few weeks ago got me thinking. As stated in the post, brands do not build themselves. A brand is a promise. A good brand is a promise that is never broken. What then, happens to a brand that was not well thought out? A brand that is limiting or stunts the growth of the company?
Of course, there are worse things. However, this mistake is easy to make and has recently happened to a company I have a long-standing connection with. The company provides a solid service. It is reliable and is upheld in the community. Many tout its achievements. There are many strong qualities to serve as a foundation when the opportunity for a rebranding effort arose. Despite its numerous strengths, the company chose a tagline that communicates “Yay us!” This does nothing for me.
The company failed to communicate why it deserves congratulations and continued support from the community as its tagline begs. The tagline is boring, lacks innovation and does not advance the brand. “Yay us!” does not tell me anything or persuade me to find out more. The effort may have been hasty and it shows.
In my opinion companies with successful brands include:
- Publix – Where shopping is a pleasure. It is a pleasure to shop at Publix.
- Nike – Just do it. I feel empowered to do anything with Nike running shoes.
- Target – Expect More. Pay Less. I can go to many places to get a cheaper price on anything, however, I go to Target for nice things at a nice price from a nice place.
- Chipotle – Food with integrity. The food is delicious and I feel better choosing a burrito over other fast food options.
The above-mentioned companies are national powerhouses. Their promise has everything to do with it. A brand has to be stronger than a tagline. The tagline simply states the facts. I hope the company previously mentioned recognizes the missed opportunity and corrects it in the future. Until then, “Yay us!”