The last thing that a slogan maker needs to do is confuse potential customers, yet that is exactly what many taglines do. Instead of telling the public about a business, product or service the tagline simply leaves people scratching their heads.

The latest example of this is the Russian city of Sochi which will host the 2014 Winter Olympics. The city has created a tagline of “Hot.Cool.Yours” which is a little confusing. For example, what does the word “hot” have to do with the Winter Olympics? Or for that matter the word “yours”?

One problem here might be language. This might be a catchy slogan in Russia, which is written in the Cyrillic alphabet, but it doesn’t register the same in English. Instead it’s just confusing. This tagline demonstrates the pitfall of trying to create a humorous or hip slogan.

The truth is that this tagline doesn’t promote Sochi as a winter destination nor does it promote the games or the new Post-Soviet Russia.  The games’ President actually had to explain what it meant to reporters.

If the slogan has to be explained to people, the slogan maker has failed in his/her job. Taglines are supposed to be easily understood in order to be catchy. A person needs to get the basic idea of the phrase from a quick glance at it. The “Got Milk slogan works because it is easily understood.

A good rule of thumb when using an advertising slogan generator or a slogan writer is you should be able to understand any phrase they create in a second. If you have to think about a slogan for more than a few seconds, the slogan maker has failed.

Confusion Leads to Ineffective Slogans

The more confusing a slogan is, the less effective it will be, because most people will simply ignore what they cannot understand. The reverse is also true if an easy-to-understand slogan is more likely to attract attention.

Therefore it is often a good idea to run a potential slogan by a few different people before using it. Ask what they think and more importantly, if they get the meaning of the tagline. If they don’t, you need to go back to the advertising slogan generator.

The catchiest slogans are the easiest to understand because they often contain no ambiguity or double meanings. A large number of people can understand the phrase quickly and easily simply by glancing at it.

Remember just because you understand a tagline doesn’t mean that everybody else will. This goes doubly so for humor, just because you get the joke doesn’t mean that others will.

You want a slogan that everybody will understand not something that will confuse and ultimately drive away your readers. Yet that is exactly what businesses do every day when they chose confusing slogans. If you make catchphrases simple and easy to understand people will remember them. More importantly, they will remember the product or business that you are trying to promote.