Amazing new technologies have come along in recent years that enhance or improve almost every job in the advertising field — except writing. So far, no new program, gadget or other modern convenience has come along to help a writer write a great headline, clever copy or improve a bad idea. Since the beginning of advertising, a writer has had to resort to his or her wits, intelligence and reasoning to come up with great ideas and the words to express them.
As much as copywriters love creative control, we learn quickly that we're neither owed it nor are we likely to receive it. However, there's one medium in which writers potentially can let their voice be heard: radio.
On July 22nd, 1962, the Mariner 1 spacecraft launched from Cape Canaveral on a mission to photograph Venus. Within minutes, it veered out of control and was destroyed by safety officers on the ground. The culprit? A missing hyphen in the guidance system’s code. Years later, author Arthur C. Clarke dubbed it “the most expensive hyphen in history.”
In print advertising, headlines are critical. They’re the bait. They grab your attention, and once you’re hooked, the body copy begins reeling you in with product or brand benefits, Unique Selling Propositions (USPs), reasons to change your behavior and so on. After this, either the fishing line breaks and you’re off the hook, or the CTA brings you aboard the boat and throws you into an ice-filled Styrofoam cooler marked “sold.”
Whether you work at a marketing agency or a law firm or an oil drilling company, creativity is a part of your daily life. And it isn’t a linear process. Sometimes you’ve gotta move sideways to forge ahead.
Regardless of the marketing mix for business-to-business brands in 2014, storytelling is a common theme that reigns as marketers strive to differentiate themselves in a crowded marketplace. Psychology has confirmed that stories break the barrier of intellectual defenses, and to humans, a good story is received as a gift.
In order for you to believe that I’m a comedian, I need to tell you a joke. I can tell you all day long how hilarious I am. But until I actually make you laugh, you won’t (and shouldn’t) believe me. It’s a claim, not a brand position. That’s the point of content marketing. Produce ‘content’ that proves your brand position.
I’m a con artist. And, honestly, it’s a label I wear proudly. Don’t act like you’re innocent. If you’re in the marketing biz, chances are you’re a con artist as well (or at least on your way).
Thanksgiving is past. Christmas is bearing down and the end of the calendar year is upon us for all practical business purposes.
By modern streaming media standards, I’m practically a living fossil. Left in the dust by defectors to Spotify, I cling to my circa-2011 media habits.