Writing the Brand Manifesto and Brand Tagline for the Brand Book

Creating the brand manifesto and brand tagline are critical components to intentionally crafting your brand strategy. Learn how here.

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Now that you’ve had the opportunity spend some time getting acquainted with your Brand for your Brand Book, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and write (or include) your Brand Manifesto and Tagline. (If you’ve been following Finding Brand for awhile now, you might recall me addressing manifestos before in The Secret Sauce.)

The Brand Manifesto and Brand Tagline are critical elements of both your brand and Brand Book. They communicate the crux of your brand to your internal and external audiences, and when included correctly in the brand book, they will help bring your brand to life.

First, a Definition of “Manifesto” and “Tagline” for our Brand Book

According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, “Manifesto” is a noun, meaning: “a written statement declaring publicly the intentions, motives, or views of its issuer.” That’s exactly what we need to include in our Brand Book. A statement that clearly articulates the intentions and motivations for our Brand — our reason for being, if you will.

The tagline, according to the same Merriam Webster Dictionary, is “a reiterated phrase identified with an individual, group, or product.” This is the phrase that, after time, will trigger your entire brand position in the consumer’s memory. Nike-“Just Do It.” Avis-“We try harder.” Bissell-“Life is messy, clean it up!” Obviously, it will be an essential element in our brand book.

Manifesto = Our Flag at the Top of the Brand Mountain

2013-09-14 18.36.59This section of our Brand Book will be our touchstone. The document we go back to before we create new Brand collateral before we post to our social media, before we begin blogging, and most certainly before we talk to the press. The manifesto is the flag we place on the top of the brand mountain staking out our beliefs. It doesn’t equivocate. It doesn’t hedge. It says it plain and clear. It’s an integral component in our brand book for clarity and invoking the appropriate emotional resonance.

Tagline = Our photograph of the Flag at the Top of the Brand Mountain

2013-09-14 18.52.19The tagline is what we share with our friends, bosses, enemies, and stakeholders showing off the accomplishment we made climbing to the top of our Brand Mountain. Since no-one wants to be the person with a photograph of every leaf on the way up the to the top, the tagline is the best, most succinct and memorable image from our trip. It will be what we use on business cards, advertisements, and as our call to action whenever we need or want to invoke our Brand position. The tagline the public face of our brand in our brand book.

A Word About the Brand Manifesto’s Format for the Brand Book

brand manifestoWhile there doesn’t have to be a format for the manifesto in the brand book, it simply needs to come from the heart; occasionally you’ll find references for one. (Check out David Brier’s “The Last Word in Branding” for Fast Company.) What’s more important than format is that it comes from the heart, creates an emotional response and is both inspirational and aspirational. In my opinion, the manifesto should culminate in the tagline for the Brand position. Doing so, both demonstrates how you got to the tagline and gives the tagline additional depth and resonance.

Rubber Duckie Brand Manifesto for the Brand Book

As we have with this entire Brand Book Series, it’s now time to apply the Manifesto and Tagline to the Rubber Duckie brand position for inclusion in our Brand Book.

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See more from the Brand Book Tutorial Series

Tisha Oehmen

Tisha Oehmen is a professional brand strategist and a leader in the branding field. She was recently named a member of the Global Guru’s Top 30 Brand Gurus. She is also the co-founder of Oregon-based Paradux Media Group and the best-selling author of the book, Finding Brand: The Brand Book Tutorial.

Possessing expertise in both front- and back-office operations, Tisha conceptualizes, develops, and implements initiatives to foster brand effectiveness like no other. With over 15 years of experience in branding and marketing, Tisha has successfully led large financial institutions and health care companies down the path of renaming their business.

Where Tisha really shines is in the work that isn’t done. Sometimes a name change for a business isn’t in their best interest and after meeting with Tisha, they are able to find the true value and equity that has always been in their brand. Tisha has a special knack of being able to communicate the value so that the CEO/Business owner can see its luster and then with a little polishing, make it shine company wide.

Tisha is best known for developing long lasting branding campaigns that speak to the heart of the business, the brand, and the community. True brand, no matter how big or small, has longevity. Creating branding campaigns that have longevity, that have a laser-like focus, is where Tisha thrives.

Tisha received her M.B.A. from the University of Oregon, from where she also earned a B.A. in Political Science. She enjoyed a distinguished academic career punctuated by enthusiastic and successful participation in competitive speaking events, and holds numerous awards for her skill in public speaking. Tisha is widely recognized for her ability to capture an audience’s attention with her straightforward and engaging speaking style.

When not working, she enjoys golfing, baking, reading, and hiking with her partner, Mike, and their two dogs, Chloe and Jackson. She’s also an active member of Rotary International, the Chamber of Commerce, and is a very proud supporter of the Oregon Ducks. Tisha lives in Eagle Point, Oregon.

Reader Interactions


  1. Mitchel Reverra says

    This is really good published article. I will apply it to my self to improve my blogging. Such a great yet interesting post. Thank you very much for sharing this useful stuff.

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