The words you hear in an ad can trigger a vivid image in your mind. Think about every word you write.
An entrepreneur jumps out of an airplane then figures out how to build a parachute on the way down.
So you still don’t think advertising works,that it won’t help your business, that it’s a waste of money? Well let me tell you a quick story about my recent Kijiji experience and then you tell me if you still don’ tthink advertising works. I had in my possession an inexpensive red guitar. It was more of a novelty item than a serious guitar but it did play fine and looked cool; no, more than cool, it was unique. I never learned how to play well despite owning many guitars throughout my life. But this red one was just collecting dust so I figured I would Kijiji it. Now, even though I’m a marketing guy, I completely ignored every rule and every bit of marketing knowledge it had taken me a lifetime to learn. My ad was careful to point out that this wasn’t a high quality instrument. I went out of my way to say that it was more of a novelty item or a fun thing than a serious guitar. I probably had ten anti-selling words in a 30-word ad all intended to not give the wrong impression about the guitar. After about 3 weeks of no response I had all but forgotten about the dumb ad.
Then one day I was checking out my other Kijiji ads and remembered that my guitar ad was still up. For some reason though, when I read the ad again I thought that it sucked big time. I thought, who the heck would buy this guitar based on my ad? So I re wrote the ad as follows: HEADLINE: RED GUITAR FOR PEOPLE WITHOUT RED GUITARS.
COPY: This cool red guitar would make a great gift for someone without a red guitar. It’s cooler than Angry Birds, more fun than a barrel of fish. What’s not to like? Go Red this Christmas.
Ya, I know, it sounds goofy, written by a disturbed person and would never pass an agency strategy test. But it worked! I received 13 emails about it within eight hours of posting. The first email said they called purely based on the “hilarity” of the ad. That person came the next day to pick it up. Now tell me that advertising doesn’t work!