A campaign slogan is essentially the same as a brand. It does more than describe the campaign. It leaves a lasting imprint in the listener's or viewer's mind. A campaign slogan can be an important part of the strategic marketing of a nonprofit organization.
Like a good brand, a good campaign slogan is meaningful, memorable, and positive. How memorable it is may depend on the sound of it when said out loud or how visual it is when expressed as a logo or word-mark.
In fundraising campaigns, the name of the campaign becomes like another brand for the nonprofit organization. A campaign slogan extends the brand, similar to how a tagline extends a commercial brand.
There are basically four kinds of campaign slogans:
Imperative Slogan - a command to do something – Change our Community!
Descriptive Slogan - describes the key feature or benefit of the organization – ACME Charity – Helping People since 1896.
Superlative Slogan – exaggerates but in a way that makes a point and is something you believe to be true – The Future of our School Depends on You.
Provocative Slogan - Makes the listener or viewer think or reflect on their situation – Keep Our Streets Safe at Night
If you are trying to think of a slogan, a good brainstorming technique is to say essentially the same thing in each of these four ways and see which one has the best ring to it. As an example:
ACME Charity - Intelligent Changes for Our Community
ACME Charity - We Will Change Things.
ACME Charity - The Smartest Choice for Community Change
ACME Charity - Do you really want anybody else making changes?
Each of these slogans makes the point that ACME Charity is a smart organization that will make some positive changes in the community. But each slogan is quite different and has a different sound to it. Strategic marketing for nonprofit organizations can be difficult because they often have multiple marketing objectives. A campaign slogan can extend the existing brand to achieve one or more of those strategic marketing objectives.
Ron Strand is a part-time Instructor at the Centre for Communication Studies at Mount Royal College and the President of Strateo Consulting Inc. - a strategic marketing and communications consulting firm.