Branding failure of a building supply store

Home Hardware is a building supply company based in Canada. It’s like The Home Depot, but they tend to serve smaller local markets than the big-box Home Depot.

For years their tagline was…

Home Hardware: Help is close to home

…which is a good tagline. It makes sense and it highlights both their expertise and their local small market focus. And, as The Home Depot’s presence grew in Canada, this message became even more relevant (since Home Depot is frequently NOT helpful, nor is it close to home for a lot of small-town customers).

But in the past few months, they’ve switched their tagline to…

Home Hardware: Homeowners helping homeowners

… which is the weakest tagline I’ve ever heard! To begin with, they’re using the word “homeowner” twice in five words; and the word “home” appears three times in five words. I think they were trying to go for a memorable alliteration but alliteration is really only effective on a sharper-sounding first letter, not the soft-starting “H”.

Not only is it an annoying tagline to say, the message of the tagline is weak and they’ve stopped highlighting their two biggest strengths: They’re no longer highlighting their expertise “help” factor (I don’t want a homeowner helping me when I go into Home Hardware. I want to feel like I’m talking to an expert!), and they’re no longer highlighting their local market “close to home” factor.

Published by Aaron Hoos

Aaron Hoos is a writer, strategist, and investor who builds and optimizes profitable sales funnels. He is the author of The Sales Funnel Bible and other books.

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