We all think of taglines as being used in the corporate world whether for small mom and pop businesses, multinationals or charitable organizations.
However they aren’t just used by businesses and many countries have long used unofficial taglines or mottos in their branding. They do this because just as a business wants to get its message out over its values and services then it is important for a country too.
Many of the greatest nations have their own strapline. Centuries ago France became embodied by the phrase “Liberté, égalité, fraternité” which translates as liberty, equality and brotherhood.
The United States is known around the world for its slogans of “Land of the Free, and the Home of The Brave” or “The Land of Opportunity”. Great Britain in the early 20th Century had a tagline of “A Land Fit For Heroes” and following a series of re-brandings and like many a good business re-branded itself and more recently coined the phrase “Cool Britannia”.
It isn’t just countries that get into taglines. Mention “The Sunshine State” and few of us will think of Oregon but instead the sunny state of Florida. The volunteer state can only be Tennessee. In fact all 50 American states have their own slogan.
Just like in the business world, they use it for marketing, identity and heritage and differentiate themselves and their identity. Californiais theGoldenStatedue to its history with the Gold Rush,Virginiais theOldDominionStateas it as Charles II ofEnglandincorporated it with his other dominions inEurope.
Not all states have historical taglines, Wyoming is known as “The Equality State” due to the record of womens rights and equality there. It sends a message to the rest of the country and the world of what sort of placeWyomingis and aspires to be.
It’s not even just states that have their own taglines. Counties have them, even cities do too. Everyone knows that New York is The Big Apple and the City that Never Sleeps, and that San Francisco is The Golden Gate City and The Music City is Nashville.
Like businesses, some cities have different taglines to target different audiences. London uses “See The World. Visit London” to attract foreign visitors while home-grown tourists see the slogan: “Totally London.”
Wherever they are, all these places place value on a good tagline and they spend billions on their identity and differentiating themselves from the competition. It’s not necessary to spend a lot on your company tagline but if New York and London see value in taglines then so should your business. A slogan writing contest could make your organization as famous as those great cities.