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Do you have a “Positioning Line”…or a “Mantra”?

At Nike the slogan is just do it - [but] the mantra is Authentic Athletic Performance. As Scott Bedbury, who was chief marketing officer of both Nike and Starbucks, says in A New Brand World, the mantra was not written down, never framed on a wall – it was felt. The emphasis was on authenticity.At Disney the mantra is Fun Family Entertainment. A large financial services company approached Disney, wanting to use Disney characters to promote an endowment policy that began with the birth of a child and funded the education. It fitted in with ‘family', but was neither ‘fun' nor ‘entertainment', so Disney turned down the multi-million dollar deal. Mantras help you to know when to say no.And Mike Freedman, the article's author, sums it up:  "Many great brands have brand mantras that in a few words capture their spirit. The mantra is not a slogan – it is the golden thread that holds everything together, from what a company makes, to its hiring policies."

One of the many lessons of PPM we should have learned a long time ago was that you can't make listeners do something because you want them to.  They only do it when they want to.  In other words, marketing – and branding – must not be selfish.  Marketing – and branding – must be authentic.

So what's your "mantra" that captures your spirit – and not simply your position?

What's the shorthand that helps lock your tribe of fans on to your station?

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