Over the course of my career I’ve had the opportunity to work on some great brands with some great taglines.
My first job was advertising NyQuil, “the sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching, stuffy-head, fever, so you can rest medicine” written at Benton & Bowles by Charlie Jackson.
Later in my career, I had the opportunity to work on Rolaids, of “How do you spell relief” fame. I worked on this product while at Ted Bates and do not recall hearing who the copywriter of the line was. I did have the pleasure of working with the account manager who set up the sponsorship of the MLB Relief Pitcher of the Year which was a brilliant arrangement for Major League Baseball and Warner Lambert, the manufacturer of Rolaids at the time.
It is my belief that taglines are creative expressions of the strategic positioning of the brand. Taglines can changes on a campaign by campaign basis; however, the strategic positioning of the brand should have a longer life unless you are in a ridiculously quickly evolving industry.
Volvo car always did a nice job of maintaining the strategic positioning of their brand with subtle variations on their tagline. I have frequently used the example, even if Volvo produces the hottest, two-seater, convertible that goes 0 to 60 in four seconds, it will still be seen as a “safe” sports car. Volvo owned safety and reinforced its positioning with taglines like “Drive safely.” The strategic positioning of its cars was so strong that it extended into heavy trucks, buses, construction equipment and marine engines.
Is your tagline a creative expression of your strategic positioning?