Wine Consumers and the Art of the Slogan

sloganThe American Wine Consumer Coalition (AWCC) is currently in the midst of sponsoring a contest for the best slogan for the new wine consumer advocacy organization.

The prize is pretty cool: A copy of Jancis Robinson’s monumental new book, “Wine Grapes”…which serves not only as a compendium of all things grapes, but also as a substitute for a gym membership.

The contest begs the questions, are slogans useful, should wine companies develop and use a slogan in their marketing, and what makes for a great slogan.

First things first. Great slogans are memorable and, hence, makes the companies they represent memorable. As an example, consider these slogans:

APPLE “Think Different”

BUDWEISER — “The King of Beers”

“Ideas For Life”

“If you want to impress someone, put him on your black list”

“When You Care Enough To Give The Best”

“Just Do It”

“Finger Lickin Good”

MAXWELL HOUSE“Good to the Last Drop”

BURGER KING“Have it Your Way”

“Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands”

“The Happiest Place on Earth”

So, what elements would the winner of the AWCC Slogan Contest include in their winning entry? There are a number of potential elements that might go into creating a great AWCC slogan (or any company slogan, for that matter). But the one’s that come to mind and that I think are particularly important for companies like wineries or customer facing companies are these:

1. Create a Relationship
A good slogan brings the reader and the company closer by identifying an attachment or a bond between them. For example, Hallmark’s “When you care enough to give the best” puts you and Hallmark together on a mission. You are both part of that mission. You are working together. Creating or suggesting a relationship is central to a good slogan.

2. Create a Story Line
Great slogans often suggest a story at their heart or just underneath the words. Johnny Walker’s “If you want to impress someone, put him on your black list” is a good example of this element. Who needs impressing? Who else is on the black list? Why do they need to be impressed. The creation of a story moves the reader down the metaphorical road to where you want them to be.

3. Simplicity
This element is crucial for a number of reason but especially because it leads to the slogan being memorable. Apple’s “Think Different” and Nike’s “Just Do It” are perhaps the best example of this important element to a great slogan.

4. Define the Object
Maybe this goes without saying but in the case of many companies, it’s important that the slogan get to the heart of what the company actually does. Kentucky Fried Chicken creates and sells something that is “Finger Lickin Good”. M&Ms create and sell something that “Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands”. While defining the object of the slogan is not always and necessarily part of a good slogan, it often is.

The winner of the slogan contest for the American Wine Consumer Coalition will have the task of boiling down the idea that together, wine consumers can make a difference. What kind of difference? To what end? Making wine consumers feel what in the process?

Some wine companies might feel that a slogan is beneath them or tacky. It might be for some. But for other wine companies that deal with a large number of consumers and play in the consumer product arena a good slogan might make the difference.

One Response

  1. Terroirist: A Daily Wine Blog » Daily Wine News: Slogan Contest - July 10, 2013

    […] Coalition has launched a contest to “create a great and compelling slogan.” Tom Wark explains why it’s so […]

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