Like it or not, slogans are an inescapable part of our lives, appearing on every conceivable surface, crowding the television and radio airwaves, and even flying the friendly skies on banners, blimps, and even in skywriting. Chances are, you can even name more than a few right off the top of your head, as we speak. Enjoying these slogans is not always the point – in addition to being brief, descriptive, and clever, the people who come up with these slogans want you to remember them, and if you can rattle off a bunch of them right now, they’ve done their job.
Today we are discussing the art of the restaurant slogan. We will explain how they work, and what makes a good one. Most catchy slogans, whether they are for a restaurant, or a product, fall within the realm advertising and copywriting. If you’re interested in these careers, and think you might be a good slogan writer, this course on professional copywriting training, along with this article on making a living by copywriting can help you get your advertising career started today.
Benefits of a Great Slogan
When most people think of restaurant slogans, their mind first goes to fast food restaurants. Because they have such large marketing and advertising budgets, their commercials are everywhere, and as a result, those are the ones we are most familiar with, but a restaurant of any size can make use of a good slogan. An effective restaurant slogan is deceptively simple, and the best slogans out there are not only memorable and catchy, but they also seem to have taken no effort at all to come up with, when, in fact, the opposite is true. Here, we will show you the benefits a good restaurant slogan can bring to the table. If you think you may be interested in this career path, but are worried about your grammar skills, this course on grammar essentials will help boost your writing (and speaking) skills.
- It should attract attention quickly. A restaurant is a business, and a business needs to make money to survive, and a good slogan should, first and foremost, put butts in seats. If a potential customer is driving down the freeway and sees a billboard, or the restaurant’s sign, there’s only a few seconds at the most to make an impression. A good slogan will should be easily read and comprehended, as well as attract that person’s curiosity and stand out from the surrounding noise.
- It will be a part of the business’ identity. Once out in the world, the slogan will forever be associated with that business, regardless of how often they change it. Even though Wendy’s has gone through many a slogan in their forty-plus year history, people still talk about their “Where’s the Beef” campaign from the 1980’s. That’s an example of a slogan done right.
- It should make the name of the restaurant easier to remember. Whether or not the name of the restaurant is in the slogan, if it’s an effective slogan, it should automatically make you think of the restaurant’s name. When Taco Bell requests that you “Think Outside the Bun,” its name isn’t in the slogan, but it does make you think of non-hamburger related fast food, of which, Taco Bell is the king. Subway did them one better and included their name in one of their slogans: “Subway. Eat Fresh.” Even if you tried to remove the company name, the phrase “Eat Fresh” conjures up visions of a Subway restaurant.
- It should instill pride in the workers and managers. A slogan should also act as a type of mini mission statement for the aims and goals of the restaurant, and these goals should be shared by the restaurant’s employees. They don’t want to work for someone with an embarrassing or out-of-touch slogan.
- It is an opportunity to make a statement. As we just mentioned, the slogan is a forum for the restaurant to communicate, so to speak. Its principles and goals should be obvious, as well as how they want their customers to feel when they patronize this establishment. A lot must be communicated in not a lot of space.
Dos and Don’ts of Restaurant Sloganeering
Because a restaurant’s slogan must pack a big wallop in a small package, there must be a lot of thought and consideration that go into its construction. Below are some tips on making an effective restaurant slogan. If our discussion of slogans and copywriting have you thinking about a career, this course on copywriting for pros will not only show you the ropes, but show you how to do it from home.
Restaurant Slogan Tips
- The styles of the slogan and the restaurant should match. Because there’s only a few seconds of comprehension from the customer, a good slogan should match the feel of the restaurant and give the customer an idea of what to expect. If it’s a fast food, or other casual type of restaurant, a good slogan will be quick and clever. People develop expectations after reading a slogan, and the slogan’s style should reflect that of the restaurant.
- Be self-deprecating. This is a good idea for a restaurant that may not have the bells and whistles of bigger operations. If there’s a smaller restaurant, perhaps with a large, local clientele, a little humor can be quite charming. The negative part of the slogan may or may not be true, but people will remember it. One example of this approach is an old steakhouse, Hawley’s, whose slogan was “Famous for Dining Discomfort”. Another is a restaurant out of Amarillo, TX called Newman’s, whose slogan was “Terrible Service, But We’re Friendly.”
- Be catchy and clever. It’s sometimes a good idea to have a rhyming slogan, but this is a fine line to walk without seeming too childish. Applebee’s’ slogan “Eatin’ Good in the Neighborhood” is a fine example. It’s short, it rhymes, and it explains the dining experience: quality food that’s not far from home.
- Describe a unique aspect. Whether describing the food, the dining experience, or both, a good restaurant slogan should stay away from blatantly telling people they have good food, good service, etc. Rather, they should focus on their specific strength, like Olive Garden’s “When You’re Here, You’re Family” slogan, which indicates that when you eat at Olive Garden, expect exceptional service that makes you feel at home.
- Get to the point! Short and sweet is good. Even though there have been bad short slogans, and some great longer ones, for maximum effect, a short slogan packs the most punch. In addition to being succinct, they shouldn’t have any big or potentially confusing words. Some classic short slogans include “Finger Lickin’ Good” (KFC), “I’m Lovin’ It” (McDonald’s), and “Now That’s Better” (Wendy’s’ current slogan).
If you didn’t before, now you know that some real thought and effort goes into these short messages called “slogans”. They are usually the first thing a customer encounters when deciding where to eat their next meal. As a result, the slogan must be clever, to-the-point, memorable, and most importantly, give an idea of what to expect when they eat there. To learn more about the art of promoting, this course on marketing strategy and this course on advertising and promotions will both give you a glimpse into this world.