Excuse me? Say what?

Well, I just told you, actually.

It’s as easy as this.This is the good oil. The stuff the ad agencies never tell you, either because they don’t know themselves, or because they’re trying to keep what they do a mystery, so you keep paying squillions for it.

Make your headline a question, not a statement.

See … you’re reading this now, aren’t you? The headline has done it’s job: it’s got you into the body copy, to find the evidence you now know you want.

And here is that evidence. In a survey done by the NRMA in Sydney some years ago, headlines with questions in them were found to be SIX TIMES more effective at gathering a response than headlines that were statements.

So in other words, restrain yourself from saying “We make the best widgets in the world.” Or even “New widget released!”

Instead, say “What would it mean to you if we had invented a better widget?”

Most marketers have never learned this, and consequently blather on about their own products or services intensely and boringly. (And expensively.) Then they wonder why their ads don’t work very hard.

Most ad agencies are now staffed with people who don’t know this too.

If you don’t believe me, run one ad with a question for a headline, and the identical ad with a statement, and see which works best. It’s dead easy to do online now, for example, at virtually no cost, and very easy to track the results.

If your ad agency won’t listen to you when you see that I am right, call me on 0419 290 708, and I’ll re-write your advertising for you so it works harder.

Yes, really. Life sometimes IS that simple.

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Comments
  1. Always contentious. Nearly always worth a read! Keep ’em coming, Stephen!

    Like

  2. Brian says:

    This article should be called, “Would you like to know A secret to more successful ads?” since it is only one secret of many that will improve the advertising message. Over all I think it is great advice and does make the message that much more provocative!

    Like

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