Can a Credit Card be “Brighter”?

While killing time in a Chicago-area mall last week, I saw a large floor display for Discover Card (Discover Financial is based in Chicago, I believe) with a new branding approach. The solid orange letter “O” in the Discover logo was now lit up, and the one word tagline being featured was the word Brighter.

Not having seen this marketing initiative anywhere else, I searched on the web, and apparently it is not a flash in the pan (pun intended), but part of a campaign.

From a visual standpoint, the execution was OK, but the tagline just isn’t doing it for me.

Lamps can be brighter. Stars can be brighter (or at least appear to be so, in more rural areas!). Students can be brighter. But a credit card? That’s too much of a stretch. The Discover company would have to expend a lot of words to convince anyone about new credit card ideas sufficiently advanced to be considered “brighter” than the usual stuff. Brighter how? Brighter than what? The concept is too abstract.

Better to have a tagline that relates directly to money, and especially to one of the hallmarks of the Discover card – that you can get a percentage of your purchases back. “Reward Yourself” might work. Your ideas??

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  1. Brighter is too vague. It assumes you saw the commercials.

    Bright Idea. – might be brighter.

    I find it irritating that an advertising message relies on you having been exposed to every facet in the mix. Every component should stand on its own. A little arrogant.

  2. From my point of view, usually the brand can have no any logical background. It becomes only the matter how aggressively company promotes new brand.
    I live in Ukraine, and recently the whole country was witness to the biggest re-branding campaign in her history. On of the mobile operators decided to change their logo (it was connected with some changes of major shareholder, but doesn’t matter).
    Now, just imagine – the brand was called UMC (Ukrainian Mobile Communications), here is it’s logo. And than they just changed this logo…. to the EGG!!! Yes, new brand, new logo is the egg – just like this. And the PR department was gibbering some crap about “nice, warm and friendly image”. And that is number 2 operator in the country. And they changed all the logos, at all offices, stores, changed the prepaid cards design, everything, everything was hallmarked with the egg. I can only imagine how much money it cost…