Channeling Your Inner Don Draper – Creating A Logo And Tagline

Posted by Allan Steinmetz on 14 July 2015

Tags: , , ,

This is the seventh submission in an 11-week series on how to launch an employee engagement program. Last week I spoke importance of WIIFM (What’s in it for me?). In this post I will discuss the importance of logo lockup and having a tagline.

A picture is worth 1000 words

It is important to have a singular focal point for a brand alignment program that people can identify and point to. This generally requires a logo lockup and tagline. Something that all the constituents can rally behind and can live for many years.

Our research suggests that a rallying cry or tagline working in conjunction with the visual representation of the idea has higher interest and impact with the intended target audience of employees.

So how do you get started? Follow these steps.

As a team, take an inventory of the top themes/messages that were derived from your previous message architecture laddering session. Through multi-voting where everybody gets five votes, select the top three themes/messages that are a priority for the group.        

Next, start the brainstorming session for resonance and impact. So for instance if one of the key themes were to improve quality, you would ask the team the question, “what images metaphors or icons come to mind when you think of quality?” Spontaneously, people in the group will start generating ideas such as “seals of approval”, or “thumbs up”, or a “clear light bulb”. Record as many ideas as you possibly can. Don’t dwell on whether the idea is good or not. Generally speaking, one idea helps generate additional ideas. Next, go on to the next message architecture/laddering theme and do the same thing.

After you have exhausted all the ideas, have the team multi-vote to identify the ones that have the greatest potential.

Symbols have meaning. Just look at these icons and think about the meaning that is conveyed by each visual idea. An icon is usually a pictorial representation, whose form suggests its meaning.


A metaphor is a figure of speech in which a word, image or phrase, literally denoting one kind of object or idea, is used in place of another. It is a likeness or analogy between them. Each of the illustrations below conveys a different meaning: structure and organization, overjoyed, a bright idea, and finally, chaos at work.


An icon or metaphor coupled with a good slogan or tagline can make a difference between a mediocre change management/employee engagement program and an exceptional, motivational one. If you would like to discuss how this is done and to share some specific ideas for some of our clients please give us a call.