Di Bawoh Rang Ikang Kering
Random Ramblings of A Retired Retainer


Wednesday, January 05, 2005
I got to thinking about taglines after I watched the telecast of the Malaysia-Indonesia Tiger Cup semi-final last Monday. They sure could use one. No, it is not "Malaysia Boleh", obviously. I will think of an apt one by the time I finish this.

What are taglines? In simple terms, they are slogans or catchphrases used as part of branding and selling. I am sure Mack, our Branding Guru could tell us more when we have teh tarik with him. I can only quote you taglines that I can remember. Depending on how long you have lived, where you lived and how long ago you learnt how to read, you might be familiar with:

Big, Strong, Friendly
Just Do It!
Don't leave Home Without It
Put A Tiger In Your Tank
We Try Harder
Say It With Flowers
Diamonds are Forever
Ultimate Driving Machine
Saya Lupa Saya Punya Brylcreem
Cepat Di Masak, Sedap Di Makan

You might have noticed that the taglines are short and meaningful. Most keep to 3 words. HP uses only one word now: Invent. I guess if they are longer they would be a copy and no longer a tagline. Whatever they are, they should be memorable and they say something about the brand. And it better be true. As the tagline of a famous ad agency said since 1900 "Truth Well Told". Let us see a few of those taglines. Let's take "Diamonds Are Forever", the tagline, not the movie. It is true that diamonds don't wear out. They are very tough stones. It is also true that you get to keep them forever. You get diamonds when someone gets very sentimental and you want to remember the occasion forever. Nowadays, it is not easy to sell diamonds. My daughter and her husband found that out recently. So they have to keep the diamonds forever.

The complete slogan for Avis, the car-rental company was "We're No2! We Try Harder". It was brilliant and they did try harder. Soon after, they progressed well enough to change the tagline to "We're No 1 ½". Many companies changed their taglines over time. McDonald currently uses "I'm Loving It!" while KFC keeps their famous "It's Finger Lickin' Good". Coca Cola, after "The Pause That Refreshes" went from "The Real Thing" in 1970 to "Can't Beat The Real Thing" in 1990. In between they had "I'd like to Buy the World a Coke", "Coke Adds Life", "Things Go Better With Coke" and "Have A Coke And A Smile". The local Coke had "Chup" for a while. I guessed that fizzled out.

Movies have taglines too. One famous tagline was Alien's "In Space No One Can Hear You Scream". I made full and frequent use of that in chat rooms. When asked what an old man is doing in a chat room, I typed "In Cyberspace No One Can Hear Me Wheeze".

Oh yes, our football team. They should use the tagline that belongs to a car battery. It can also be used by married men. The tag goes:

"Starts Stronger, Lasts Longer"

Coke ad lifted from here.