Microsoft’s New Tagline “Be What’s Next”: Er, I don’t think so

By Mark Skoultchi

July 30, 2010

A tagline is a tricky little beast. It needs to get right to the heart of the brand  and do so in a way that’s intuitive, memorable and absolutely pitch perfect. In very few words. (Like Fed Ex’s old “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.” Or Nike’s iconic “Just do it” which is not only a great tagline, but a stirring rallying cry.)

So, sorry Microsoft, but your newly leaked tagline “Be What’s Next” just doesn’t make the cut. Besides sounding awkward and making me think too hard, it simply doesn’t appeal. (While I’m very interested in “what’s next,” I don’t want to be what’s next. Do you?) In short, it sounds precisely like what it is: a heavy-handed, transparent attempt to convey cool cutting-edge-y-ness. (Could anything be more dreary?)

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