Every brand gets the chance to say something

As an English major, I learned that great writing can tell you a multitude of things with stunning simplicity. A single phrase can house several shades of meaning, expressed succinctly.

Good brand messaging can be this way, too.

One of my favorite examples is Atlanta’s own Delta brand. Every time I pass the billboard on the highway, I smile at one of the tagline: “Keep climbing.” In only two words, it captures several aspects of the Delta brand. It reminds you, first and foremost, of the service they provide: flight. But why not just, “Keep traveling” or “Fly on?” Well, apart from the fact that they don’t sound as cool, they also don’t say as much.

In particular, two aspects of Delta’s great tagline stand out to me:

– Climbing above the competition. The idea of “climbing” applies to more than just height—it’s about raising the bar, speaking to new heights of customer service and in-flight experience. It reinforces the feeling that, with Delta, you’re getting something that’s on another level from what other airlines could offer.

– Climbing the corporate ladder. While Spirit Airlines may have cornered the market on cheap flights for college kids, Delta is the go-to flight experience for traveling businessmen in Atlanta. By encouraging patrons to, “keep climbing,” Delta speaks directly to the go-getters, thereby capturing the attention of their target audience.

Every brand gets the chance to say something—whether it’s one simple thing, or a whole host of ideas encapsulated in just a couple of words. The best brand messages are often memorably simple, but impressive in the truth that they convey. How many layers of your brand does your messaging communicate?