A local gym recently mailed a postcard to attract new members. It features a stock color photo of an attractive woman working out, with some brief copy, the closing of which read: “Call today. Summer is comming.” When I pointed out to the owner that “coming” is spelled with one m, he shrugged it off.
In USA Today (2/23/07), wine writer Jerry Shriver recommends a 2005 Barton & Guestier “Bistro Wine” Pinot Noir. He says: “The fruit is restrained, the texture is soft, and there’s a smidgen of that ethereal ‘Sideways’ character lurking in the bottle.” Now, is it just me, or is this an example of terrible writing? To
Alan Shawn Feinstein, one of the deans of mail order in the pre-Internet era, once ran a full-page ad in the New York Times with the headline: “Yours Free — My Gift to You.” But JW, a subscriber to my e-zine The Direct Response Letter, thinks “free gifts” is bad writing. “Free gifts … is
Just got a direct mail package selling subscriptions to Out magazine, which seems to be for gays. One of the headlines reads: “Is the Pope Gay?” My first reaction: this is really inappropriate and offensive. I mean, unless they have an investigative report proving that the Pope is gay, it’s totally speculation … and maybe
A TV commercial for Quiznos says that if you do not like the sandwich they serve you, they will give you another sandwich free. Picture walking into a sub shop. You order a sandwich. You really don’t like it. In fact, you gag on it. Do you really want them to give you a second
In today’s issue of AWAI’s e-newsletter, The Golden Thread, my friend Will Newman wrote an article on how to be a better copywriter. One of Will’s pieces of advice was to read the National Enquirer. This is old advice for copywriters: Milt Pierce, from whom I took a copywriting class in 1983, told us: “Read
When you write copy for a product, do you do a better job if you are a true believer in the product … or a cynical skeptic? It’s been said that the copywriter must be enthusiastic, because enthusiasm for a product — or its lack — is transmitted in the writing. On the other hand,