How to Write Advertising that SELLS

If you’re a BUSINESS OWNER …

You know the routine:  it’s advertise or adiós.  

You know the rules: either you convince me I need your product or service, or I’m going to the business that is (you know, your competition).  

It’s just that simple.   

The problem is, it’s also just that simple to advertise all wrong. And most business owners are advertising all wrong.   

Now for the good news: you as a BUSINESS OWNER can learn how to advertise in a way that leads customers straight to your store, or website, or blog, or…   

 All you need is a library card.   

 Here’s your arsenal:   

Get the equivalent of a PhD in advertising in one summer.

It’s true – 99 small business owners out of 100 have read books on, or have a degree in, Finance, Business Ethics, Accounting, and the like. And that’s great. Until they have to advertise their product or service to the world. Now they’re lost at sea, because they can manage a balance sheet, but they don’t have a clue how to get people to buy their products.   

Take one summer. Read four books. Apply the knowledge to your own advertising. Wipe the floor with your competition.   

It’s just that simple.

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About father1son

Father. Author. AdMan.
This entry was posted in Advertising, Master's, Response, Sales, Scientific, Synopsis, Tested, Tips, Tricks, Write and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to How to Write Advertising that SELLS

  1. Short, direct, imperative. Great copy.

  2. Tom Leith says:

    Well, I’m brand (ha!) new to the advertising world so I’m taking your advice and getting the books. Three from the library, Caples through ABEBooks.com for about $7 delivered. Cheap education. I’m told I’m a pretty good expository writer, but I’ve never tried writing ad copy.

    You gave the famous New Coke example to illustrate an abuse of research. Coke sells, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Coke ad that even tried to convince me that I need Coke for anything. What they do instead is try to get me to associate “have a good time” with Coke. Same thing goes for the big mega-brewed beers — they don’t talk much about the beer itself, mostly about “having a good time”. Bud Light is the prime example, and it sells in spite of Wasssssup! Our biggest local grocery chain has “the friendliest stores in town”, a dubious assertion. I don’t need a store to be friendly; I don’t even know what that means. But people shop there, lots of them.

    These people say you need them, but they’re laughed at.

    So what have I missed? Am I doomed never to write a decent ad?

    • father1son says:

      You’ll get there, Tom.

      But, just as if you set out to learn Calculus or a foreign language, you won’t get there overnight.

      Keep “Tested Advertising Methods” (the Caples book) within arm’s reach whenever you are writing an ad. This book contains proven methods — the specific words, phrases, and design elements — that made real ads SELL in the real world.

      Until you find a better way to make an ad sell, you copy.

      I don’t mean plagiarize, I mean use these techniques as the basis for writing your own ads.

      Mozart said, “I have never made the slightest effort to compose anything original.”

      Remember, the successful techniques used in successful ads are more science than art.

      In the beginning, you’ll want your ads to look pleasing to the eye or contain clever copy.

      But an ad that is pleasing to the eye or witty to the ear and an ad that SELLS the most are seldom the same.

      And, of course, keep asking questions and checking this blog for answers.

      Finally, enjoy your journey into advertising.

  3. Tom Leith says:

    Thanks for the encouragement and advice. A dear friend of mine is a (successful) fine artist — one day I told her I have very few original ideas, but I can sure spot a good one and shamelessly rip it off. She told me Picasso claimed to have done the same thing and went on to say that’s what all beginning designers do. (I’ve been doing computer typesetting since 1980 and some ad layout work from time to time) I expect primarily to be on the research & planning & strategy end of things, but I figure if I’m going to be a journeyman I ought to be able to write passably good copy. Thanks again.

  4. trleith says:

    Finished My Life in Advertising — very cool book. Starting Scientific Advertising. I tweet one tweet per chapter. Chapter 1: Don’t reinvent the wheel. I’ve had to learn this a couple times 😉

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