Advertising: long copy or Short copy? (part 1)

Whatever claim you use to gain attention, the advertisement should tell a story reasonably complete. If you watch returns, you will find that certain claims appeal far more than others. But in usual lines a number of claims appeal to a large percentage. Then present those claims in every ad for their effect on that percentage.

Some advertisers, for sake of brevity, present one claim at a time. Or they write a serial ad, continued in another issue. There is no greater folly. Those serials almost never connect.

When you once get a persons attention, then is the time to accomplish all you can ever hope with him. Bring all your good arguments to bear. Cover every phase of your subject. One fact appeals to some, one to another. Omit any one and a certain percentage will lose the fact which might convince.

People are not apt to read successive advertisements on any single line. No more than you read a news item twice, or a story. In one reading of an advertisement one decides for or against a proposition. And that operates against a second reading. So present to the reader, when once you get him, every important claim you have.

The best advertisers do that. They learn their appealing claims by tests – by comparing results from various headlines. Gradually they accumulate a list of claims important enough to use. All those claims appear in every ad thereafter.

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