A Tale of Two Taglines

Seems like this is tagline month. Examples of both good and bad – in my opinion – slogans have raised my consciousness concerning taglines.

The two I’m featuring today appeared within an hour or so as part of TV commercials for their respective owners on the Food Channel. Both companies appeal to parents of pre-teens in behalf of their kid-friendly play products. Both are companies with long and unblemished reputations.

First, there’s Playskool. Never mind they teach kids to misspell “school”. Their newest tagline is: “Believe in Play”.

Second is Crayola. Their newest tagline is “The Art of Childhood”.

What a contrast!

The Playskool slogan, in my opinion, just lays there. It’s a platitude for sure.

Not only does this slogan not differentiate the company and its products, it voices an obvious and pompous expression that’s border-line offensive. It’s an admonition. It asks you, the consumer, to “mend your ways” and believe in play. Because if they didn’t remind you, you’d probably take on your old Grinch-like attitude about play.

Now let’s look at the Crayola effort. They’ve nailed it as far as I’m concerned.

With The Art of Childhood, they’ve staked out their product category and made it their own. They’ve taken a leadership position, and they’ve done it with emotion and relevance. Doesn’t every parent want their child to be creative, to learn to express themselves positively?

And Crayola also speaks to understanding children and how to delight them with “The Art of..” phrase.

I don’t know if I could have hunted the Internet all day to find two better examples of :how to” and “how not to”.

If you’ve a different opinion, or even if you agree with a little of mine, let me know. Just click on the comments link below.

Martin Jelsema

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