I’m finally getting around to reading “Juicing the Orange” by Pat Fallon and Fred Senn. (btw- the site sucks if you are blind- or Google, or even a reader looking for the material they reference). I’m withholding my opinion till I finish, but I did note something- Fallon convinced Timex to go back to “Takes a licking and keeps on ticking” with some new executions.

So, before Crispin Porter + Bogusky brought back “Have it your way” for Burger King- other agencies have done the same thing. Which leads me to the question: Why didn’t Crispin bring back “Tastes Great- Less Filling” for Miller Lite? Especially once they were in trouble with “Man Laws?”

Is it because in taste tests Miller doesn’t beat Bud (I’m not a beer drinker)? That would make the strategy fundamentally flawed- and then the ads will actually hurt the brand.

When the VW marketing chief asked for a return to an umbrella theme- shouldn’t Crispin look back at “Drivers Wanted” and see if the connection can be made?

BMW hasn’t abandoned “The ultimate driving machine” through several agencies (although the motorcycle division isn’t smart enough to use “The ultimate riding machine”)- and the concept still resonates.

A well known brand is shorthand for a set of emotions and conditioned responses from the consumer. The tagline, if it is closely identified and well known with your brand- is equity that shouldn’t be thrown away just because you are tired of it. The real creativity comes from being able to keep creating interesting executions that connect to the brand.

Apple has stood for ease of use in the consumers minds for years- but until the “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” campaign came, they had a hard time getting people to look at them as serious business computers (granted, being able to run Windows has also helped). Nike has “Just do it”- a tagline that could live forever and never be topped. (And to the person who called me on the phone and asked me who wrote it- and I drew a blank- it’s Jim Riswold).

The book “The Brand Gap” by Marty Neumeier covers branding better than any book I’ve read. The hand test and the swap test are probably two of the simplest, most obvious tools a marketer should pass.

The hand test asks if you cover the logo- can you tell who did the ad? And the swap test is equally cool- could your logo and someone elses swap and work better- he shows Polaroid and Nationwide Insurance (I should grab a scan and put it in here).

So- does your tagline instantly identify your brand- and no one elses? If it does, consider yourself lucky- and be really careful about changing it unless you have a really good reason and know it will work.

If you know of other resurected taglines- feel free to add them to the comments.