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Now when I say strapline, just so we are clear, I am referring to the main line for your company, often this line will sit very close to your logo, it will certainly be a part of your visual branding and you will use it across many forms of your marketing communications.
We are all familiar with some great straplines such as Honda's 'The Power of Dreams', or a famous one from Zanussi - 'The Appliance of Science' So you would like one of these and hopefully as good as this for your own business. Now apart from the fact that corporate companies will pay huge amounts of money for their strapline development, it is often quite simple to get yourself a good line without necessarily using a professional. Please note, I am not decrying the use of such agencies, and they carry the gravitas and insurances that the end result is correct, or at least in the vast majority of cases, there are some notable exceptions!
So how do you start, well the best way is to think of your strongest motivation, don't really think about trying to rhyme or be clever, just consider what is important to you for your business and write a list of those qualities. So that may be Trust, or Service, or keeping your prices low etc. Just think of what works for you.
Carry on going until you have about twenty or so words, now filter these don to the most important ten, and then refine down to the last five, here you may find this takes some time as it may well be the case that some of your choices carry equal weighting.
Now with your list of winning attributes, things that resound with you and make you feel good when you think about them, now write down your company name at the top of this list in big letters.
Look at your company name and repeat the words in your head quite a number of times, really think about the sound of the consonants and the vowels, think about how many syllables there are. Now take a break, your imagination is at work so leave it a while, and I mean about a day or so, just leave it and do something else for a while. This is nice work isn't it, the joys of being a creative.
Now when you do come back to it go through the same process again to start with, now start to write your main company name down a few times and then start to play with some of the words and just have fun arranging them in short strings around your main company name, do as many of these as you can think of. If more ideas come to you as you are doing this, include them in the mix.
Leave it a while again now. When you are ready to look at your work, you can now start to see ideas forming; you will see things beginning to stand out to you as looking more attractive as options. You may have found yourself looking at ads on TV or in newspapers and identifying how they have come up with their straplines.
Now, taking your creativity to a new level, start to think about what your final version will look like in full colour on your letterhead, business card and website, really imagine it and if you are ready, start to put in some of those ideas, further to this, but only when you are ready, show some supportive friends and family your ideas.
If you feel nothing is working, leave it for a while, if you are wondering why I am asking you to leave it, it is only as your creative right hand brain function, does not respond well to any pressure being placed upon it, your ideas come right on time, when your subconscious is ready to deliver, just trust this.
Now if you have access to a freelance graphic designer, ask that person to try a graphic design with some of the ideas, so you can see the end result appearing. Choosing the end result is just about going with what YOU feel happy with, and what you think is representing the highest expression of your business.
I hope you enjoy the process of working on your strapline, let me know how it goes.