Digital marketing

Why customers hate your business slogan

- October 14, 2019 2 MIN READ

Does your business slogan get a mixed reaction from customers? Here are some possible reasons why it’s not hitting their buttons.

Reason #1: No obvious reason, ‘I just don’t like it’

This is a surprisingly common reason, and one that you can’t do much about unless the customer gives you more information, such as: “I don’t like it because I just don’t”.

Liking a business slogan depends on the intricate tapestry of an individual’s perceptions and life experiences. Sometimes a person isn’t even aware of why they don’t like something, because the reason/s can be subtle and shadowy. They know that they don’t like it, they just don’t know why.

Reason #2: It reminds them of something awful

Sometimes the reason is more obvious because it’s rooted in the muddy swamp of their bad memories and awful experiences.

For example, if your childhood chore was to change your little brother’s nappy, and let’s say for the purpose of this exercise that he had a high-fibre diet; and let’s say that your parents yelled out the following nappy-changing order to you: ‘Just do it. JUST DO IT!’  Then Nike’s slogan would probably get you running, but for all the wrong, stomach-churning reasons.

Reason #3: It’s uninteresting or boring

Lots of businesses have uninteresting slogans, and no doubt you’ve fallen asleep while reading some yourself. No matter what your business or industry, every slogan can be memorable.

Want more articles like this? Check out the business marketing section.

Reason #4: It’s offensive

If your slogan has inspired people to make a voodoo doll of you, and you don’t sell voodoo dolls, please read this point.

Over the years I have seen a few slogans that have been sexist, offensive or derogatory. Usually these slogans have been written by well-meaning business owners who, in their pursuit for creativity, have utilised a cringe-worthy pun or head-shaking rhyme.

Even though some people will love the slogan, others will be offended. The offended folk may boycott your business or even complain about you to their friends and family. Is it worth it? Personally, I don’t think so. A business slogan is meant to celebrate, not alienate.

Reason #5: It’s negative

This point reminds me of a car dealer’s slogan from many years ago. The slogan started with the words “Hard to say. Hard to find…” and I can’t remember anything else, including the name of the car dealer.

What I can remember was thinking to myself, “It all sounds too hard!” I didn’t feel at all excited about the business, I just felt negative.

But it wasn’t my fault. They started it.

Let’s end on a positive

In my experience, I have found slogans and tag lines create a healthy amount of heated debate, perhaps more than any other type of business writing around. The slogan that one person loves another person will loathe.

My advice is, as long as you write the best slogan you possibly can, don’t worry about what everyone thinks. Just aim to please yourself, your team and the people in your target market.

Remember: you’re not out to win awards, just more customers. I hope you do just that!

Are there any business slogans that you can’t stand?

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  • Andrew Caska

    Caska IP Patent Attorneys

    'Flying Solo opened up so many doors for us - I honestly don't know where I'd be without it"