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Instantly memorable: Get the perfect tagline for your business

Nov 21, 2017

unique-pencil-320x213.jpgHow do you design the perfect tagline? One that’s not only memorable, but makes people say, “Oh, yeah, that’s exactly the broker we need.”

Today, we’re revealing the formula behind a great tagline and sharing a few pointers that will help you create a compelling one-liner that conveys what you do and the value you offer as a broker.

First up—what’s a tagline? (And 3 types of taglines to know)

A tagline is a brief but powerful phrase that helps people remember you. It’s part catchphrase, part slogan, and if done right, one of the best ways to memorably capture what you do. The #1 example of a powerful tagline is Nike’s “Just do it” slogan.


Taglines fall into three categories: feature taglines, benefit taglines, and brand taglines.

  1. A feature tagline answers the question, “What does this broker do?” A feature tagline for a broker might be “Broker X: Finding retail space for small businesses.”

  2. A benefit tagline answers, “What does this broker do for ME?” It shows the outcome of working with you. Here’s an example: “Broker X: The best retail space for your needs.”

  3. Finally, there’s the brand tagline. A brand tagline conveys a bigger, broader idea about you. An example of a tagline in this category might be: “Broker X: Future-forward office spaces” or “Broker X: Rule your retail space”.

What makes a tagline good?

Every tagline needs to check these five points to be successful:

  1. Succinct. It should be short and sweet. Aim for 5-7 words, max.
  2. Clear. It should be clear. If you have to choose between clear and clever, always go for clear.
  3. Unique. It should capture what sets you apart.
  4. Memorable. It should be catchy.
  5. Message. Finally, it should convey your intended message. Don’t be so clever and catchy that you miss the point.

The fun part: writing your own tagline

Now that you understand what goes into a tagline, it’s time to write your own! But before you get started, you need to answer three important questions:

  1. Who is your target client?
  2. What are the key services you offer? What are the features that set you apart? What benefits do clients get from working with you?
  3. What is the main message you want to convey?

Take a minute to sketch these out. This is the “meat” that will influence your final tagline.

Next, figure out what type of tagline you need: feature, benefit or brand. Here’s a hint:

  • If what you do is complicated and you need to explain it, you’d use a feature tagline.

  • A benefit tagline, on the other hand, works for almost everyone: it shows people how you’ll solve their problem.

  • Finally, a brand tagline is a good choice for larger teams, especially if people are already familiar with what you do. It’s that extra “kick” of personality that can set you apart from your competition.

Finally, it’s time to start writing. Pull up a document (or take out a piece of paper) that will be your “tagline sandbox.” This is simply a place to get all of your ideas out, good, bad, and awful!

A common mistake people make is to think their tagline has to be perfect from the start—but that’s almost never the case. The important thing is to get a bunch of ideas out on the page—at least 100 of them. Somewhere in there, you’ll have your gem (even if it needs a little polishing first).

That’s right: 100 tagline ideas. Get them down! Remember, 99 of them can be awful. Even 100 of them can be awful. But at least you’ll start getting a sense of what works, and what doesn’t, for your brand.

Feeling stuck? Try this:

It can be hard to come up with 100 ideas (even if they’re bad ones), so here are a few simple things to do when you get stuck:

  • Blab it out. Turn to a friend or colleague and brainstorm ideas out loud. Sometimes your best ideas are the things you blurt out spur of the moment.

  • Make it as basic as possible. Give your brain a break and write the most basic taglines you can think of: “Broker X: I make deals happen.” “Broker X: I represent tenants.” Remember — these don’t have to be amazing. The point is to keep them as simple as possible.

  • Play with your words. Pull out the thesaurus and try different words out. Red Bull could have chosen a tagline like “Red Bull gives you a lift.” But with a little imagination and wordplay, they ended up with “Red Bull gives you wings.” See the difference?

  • Be ridiculous. Try writing something completely absurd. Jot down the ideas you think would never, ever work. Sometimes really “strange” ideas spark your most brilliant taglines!

  • Say the same thing 10 different ways. If you’ve got a tagline that’s sort of good but missing that “wow” factor, you can get it closer to perfect by writing it out 10 different ways. Rearrange the words. Swap words out. Make it a little longer or a little shorter. Write it backwards. Switch it from 3rd person to 1st person. See what you come up with!

We hope this quick guide to taglines gives you the inspiration to start writing your own! Remember, if you can get the right tagline down, that’s one more thing that helps you stand out from other brokers—and in a competitive industry like this one, it can be the difference that lands you the deal.

Next: The do’s and don’ts of CRE blogging

Topics: Best Practices

Irena Ashcraft

Written by Irena Ashcraft

Irena is a freelance writer who works with innovators, educators, explorers, and changemakers. From brave nonprofits to frontier-straddling startups, she helps clients connect with their biggest fans through writing that's fresh, relatable, and fun.

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