Platitudes and superlatives have no place in advertisement. The more specific and tight a statement, the more influence it holds because of its factual basis. Advertising is based on set principles, and so to create generalizations and expressions without basis must be avoided.

Words like “best in the word”, “Lowest price in existence”, “supreme in quality” are expected claims. Ad copy shouldn’t boast or entertain – ad copy should focus on how the service will benefit the prospect.

Advertising is a science that has for itself no sense for lies – people respect the industry, so marketers should strive to maintain a level of credibility. Provide value without boasting: “But a man who makes a specific claim is either telling the truth or a lie. People do not expect an advertiser to lie. They know that he can’t lie in the best mediums. The growing respect in advertising has largely come through a growing regard for its truth”.

The weight of an argument may often be multiplied by making it specific. Say that a tungsten lamp gives more light than a carbon and you leave some doubt. Say it gives three and one-third times the light and people realise that you have made tests and comparisons. Words should have for their basis quantitative and factual examples. Avoid saying “our prices have been reduced”; instead say “our prices have been reduced by 25%”.

Making a claim like “lowest price in America” has been used time and time again and has no affect on consumers anymore because they have become virtually numb by this commonplace method.

Shaving soaps have long been advertised “Abundant lather,” “Does not dry on the face,” “Acts quickly,” etc. One advertiser had as good a chance as the other to impress those claims. Then a new maker came into the field. It was a tremendously difficult field, for every customer had to be taken from someone else. He stated specific facts. He said, “Multiplies itself in lather 250 times” “Softens the beard in one minute.” “Maintains its creamy fullness for ten minutes on the face.” “The final result of testing and comparing 130 formulas.” Perhaps never in advertising has there been a quicker and greater success in an equally difficult field”.

Advertisements for shaving products have always included as a benefit the time it takes to shave. One company said it takes 78 seconds to shave – this was a definitive statement that indicated actual tests and that slogan sold large.

Aim for definitive statement. Clear, concise, razor sharp and with real data, and the difference is vast.

If a claim is worth making, make it in the most impressive way.

Never use generalities, platitudes or superlatives. “Being specific claims value”.


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