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Point of view: The long and short of it
Molly Flatt, Admap, October 2013 , pp. 17-17
This article discusses the role of copy-writing in marketing, using an example of a long copy campaign from Apple, the electronics company, as a 'how not to'.
This article discusses the role of copy-writing in marketing, using an example of a long copy campaign from Apple, the electronics company, as a 'how not to'. The evolution of social media, blogs and forums has changed how brands engage with consumers, leading to speculation of a decline in copy-writing. It is argued that short, impactful copy is ideally suited to this new landscape as it is potentially easily shared through social media.
The seven deadly sins of business writing
Laura Mazur, Market Leader, Quarter 2, 2013, pp. 56-57
This article argues that clear, concise and correct writing is an essential part of how the world sees your brand or organisation, and lists and expands on the seven chief writing mistakes to avoid.
This article argues that clear, concise and correct writing is an essential part of how the world sees your brand or organisation, and lists and expands on the seven chief writing mistakes to avoid. These are: don't hide behind jargon; don't use three words where one will do; don't regard good grammar and proper spelling as optional; don't use the passive if you can avoid it; don't confuse 'fewer' and 'less'; don't ignore structure; don't forget the audience.
How to shoot yourself in the credibilities
Jeremy Bullmore, Market Leader, Quarter 4, 2012, pp. 20-20
If controversial recommendations are to be taken seriously, they need to come from a credible source or the would-be experts risk shooting themselves in the credibilities.
If controversial recommendations are to be taken seriously, they need to come from a credible source or the would-be experts risk shooting themselves in the credibilities. One example involved an American in a UK radio interview about the British security services, in which he talked familiarly about 'M Fifteen' rather than MI5. In October 2011, The Public Interest Research Centre and the World Wildlife Fund-UK published a paper called 'Think of me as evil? Opening the ethical debates in advertising'. It suggested that ads should carry a warning along the following lines: 'This advertisement may influence you in ways of which you are not consciously aware. Buying consumer goods is unlikely to improve your well-being and borrowing to buy consumer goods may be unwise; debt can enslave.' The suggestion is deeply condescending to consumers and hilariously impractical, suggesting that despite the other merits of the report, the authors have shot themselves in the credibilities.
Mythbuster: Crimes of passion
Les Binet and Sarah Carter, Admap, June 2012, pp. 9-9
The authors of this brief article criticise the misuse of the word 'passion' within marketing materials, which has become an overused exaggeration.
The authors of this brief article criticise the misuse of the word 'passion' within marketing materials, which has become an overused exaggeration. According to most dictionary definitions, passion is usually irrational, transient and uncontrollable - it's an unhinged state of mind. Occasionally there is a genuine display of passion in the business world, but it is rare and nearly always a bad thing - good leaders are controlled and stick to their vision without being blown off course by emotions. Passion is the stuff of mass hysteria, not long-term business success.
Marketing language: Make your brand a verb
Rebecca Moody, with Diana Caplinska and Chris Skillicorn, Admap, May 2012, pp. 16-17
In an age when search engines are increasingly becoming the filter for brands, the choice of words has never been so important.
In an age when search engines are increasingly becoming the filter for brands, the choice of words has never been so important. When chosen correctly, words can translate feelings and thoughts into ideas that can be shared. Linguistic memes often prompt a significance that becomes more recognisable and meaningful than they initially set out to do. And in a highly conversant social media era, the creation of memetic language adds real marketing value. Using examples from the likes of Google and Dulux, this article identifies three key ways to achieve the best return on a brand's choice of words. These include: extract added value in your name; create language that stirs reaction; and get savvy with SEO and word search.
How should voiceovers be used in ads?
Millward Brown Knowledge Point, March 2012
Voiceovers are commonly used in ads across the world, and are often used to convey information, which they can do effectively.
Voiceovers are commonly used in ads across the world, and are often used to convey information, which they can do effectively. However, if the primary goal is to entertain people or remind them of a brand, a voiceover may actually interfere with the achievement of the objective. Voiceovers are less commonly associated with distinctive ads, and continuous voiceovers can result in lower engagement. Voiceovers should be used sparingly, while pauses and silences can help add emphasis, and allow time for the message to be absorbed. Additionally, the manner in which a voiceover ties in with an ad's visual content is critical: when voiceovers and visuals compete, the voiceover message can get lost.
Point of view: The end for end-lines
John Woodward, Admap, January 2012, pp. 7-7
Researchers at the University of Miami tested end-lines that told people what to do and discovered that, actually, people would often do the opposite.
Researchers at the University of Miami tested end-lines that told people what to do and discovered that, actually, people would often do the opposite. They found that, like small children trying to assert their independence, consumers would often take out exactly the opposite meaning from the literal one. So as consumers seek to avoid being influenced by the 'influencers', the need to obscure the manipulation becomes ever greater. This poses problems for the end-line, the place where you most want to clearly express the attractiveness of your brand, but which is also the place where consumers are most suspicious.
Slogans in Advertising
Millward Brown Knowledge Point, April 2011
When well-used and oft-repeated, a slogan can become part of the fabric of a brand. But how do you build a strong connection between slogan and brand? It's not simply a matter of tacking a slogan onto an ad, because an ad with a slogan isn't necessarily more effective than an ad without one.
When well-used and oft-repeated, a slogan can become part of the fabric of a brand. But how do you build a strong connection between slogan and brand? It's not simply a matter of tacking a slogan onto an ad, because an ad with a slogan isn't necessarily more effective than an ad without one. A slogan that is merely an endline or sign-off to an ad is unlikely to make a contribution to the success of either the advertising or the brand; the creative must integrate the brand and slogan in such a way that the slogan can strengthen branding, or have some other effect.
The Feldwick Factor: Are our attention spans shorter?
Paul Feldwick, Admap, January 2011, pp. 50-50
Paul Feldwick is asked to consider the question, "Has the amount of time we spend online shortened our attention spans, and has this led to the demise of long copy ads?" Both sides of the debate over shorter attention spans is considered and the demise of long copy ads can be traced back to long before the internet revolution.
Paul Feldwick is asked to consider the question, "Has the amount of time we spend online shortened our attention spans, and has this led to the demise of long copy ads?" Both sides of the debate over shorter attention spans is considered and the demise of long copy ads can be traced back to long before the internet revolution. Feldwick offers several other factors that may have contributed.
Does your brand sound as good as it looks?
Lulu Raghavan, WPP Atticus Awards, Highly Commended, 2010
Lulu Raghavan of Landor Associates Mumbai claims that brand managers spend lots of time thinking about a brand's visual identity but little time on how it sounds.
Lulu Raghavan of Landor Associates Mumbai claims that brand managers spend lots of time thinking about a brand's visual identity but little time on how it sounds. Yet brand voice, she argues, has the ability to connect with a target audience and reinforce what a brand stands for, and is therefore critical when trying to differentiate a brand from its competitors. In her report, she cites how Australian coffee company Good Co. uses corporate jargon humorously, India's Café Coffee Day's use of colloquial phrases on signage in order to appeal to its target audience of 18-25-year-olds and W Hotel's use of extravagant description as examples of using brand voice effectively.
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