Strong Positioning Statements Withstand the Test of Time

A strong brand positioning statement can apparently withstand toddler-hood, our judicial system and the test of time. The Wall Street Journal is reporting on a campaign that Domino’s is introducing to play off of its 30 minute delivery heritage.

It’s a smart play on an existing heritage, as the WSJ reports, “Research found that as many as 30% of Domino’s customers still remembered it as the 30-minute delivery chain, even though those ads hadn’t run since Bill Clinton’s first year as president. Meantime, delivery had become an even more important part of American culture because of online shopping and movie delivery.”

The WSJ article states, “Domino’s made its name in pizza delivery by running ads that offered a discounted or free pie if the driver didn’t arrive within 30 minutes of an order. But in 1993, a St. Louis woman who was involved in an auto accident with a Domino’s delivery person sued the company on the grounds that the 30-minute pledge led to accidents. After hiring a new advertising agency, Domino’s now plans to rebrand itself around a play on the old slogan. New ads slated to start running Christmas Eve will carry the tagline “You Got 30 Minutes.” The idea is to tell customers that ordering from Domino’s gives them back 30 minutes they would have spent rustling up a meal. But it stops short of promising delivery in a half hour.”

The only part that doesn’t make sense is that they said that they are shifting their target audience to the under 30 crowd. Target consumers aged 18-30 were anywhere from 3-15 years old! I’m guessing that the media plan delivering the 30-minute guarantee in the late 80’s and early 90’s was not aimed at this target!

Regardless, kudos to the Agency for having the discipline to leverage the Domino’s heritage rather than settling for just another empty, me-too quality pizza message.

You can read the whole story here:


I am conducting a four-part tele-seminar about branding, and the discussion came up about consistency. It is of critical importance, as it ensures that every little touchpoint with the consumer resonates with all the other communications that impact your brand identity. I was trying to point out how clear branding is by asking people to quickly choose: “Coke or Pepsi? Target or Wal*Mart?” It’s an easy enough exercise when the brand is clear; but not so easy when inconcsistencies come in. The person responding to “Target or Wal*Mart?” struggled because, while they liked the Target commercials and loved the stores they visited in California, they did not like what they saw in Connecticut. Hmmmm. Seems even the big super-marketeers stumble over their brands occasionally. Their inconsistency cost them a consumer. Multiply that by a few million people and that can really make a difference to the bottom line! Ouch. Is there any inconsistency in your brand that might be costing you a customer?


I read an article from BrandWeek today about how taglines are being used less and less Are taglines going away? I don’t think so. It has to do with being true to your brand. What are you about? If you can comunicate that without a tagline, that’s fine. They pointed to Starbucks as an example of one who doesn’t need a tagline….but what the article does not address is all the other ways that a brand has to communicate its message. Creating distinctiveness is not always done with words. It can be done visually (think about the Target advertising), audibly (anyone can sing intel’s jingle), through a spokesperson (the Maytag repairman), or a creative format (like the Apple guy who apears regularly with the sadly inept PC guy). It’s not that taglines are going away; it’s that they aren’t always the best choice for creating brand consistency and messaging!