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High Five: The Art of Words That Work

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Vikki Ross, copy chief, brand and TOV consultant, picks out five particularly effective projects in terms of their excellent copywriting

High Five: The Art of Words That Work

My High Five? How about more than five? No? Right. This'll be tough. You see, I can’t count and I don’t like rules. I do like words. Lots and lots of words. Most words, actually. Except all those jargon ones. Most audiences don’t like those jargon ones either. They mean nothing to them. So why do we waste everyone’s time putting them in ads? They don’t do anything - they don’t work. Words that work are words that sound like ones people would really say. They’re also ones that make people feel something and compel them to do something like buy a product, click a button or share a tweet. I like those words, and I like words that dance. Words we can play with. Words we can rhyme and repeat to make what we say meaningful and memorable...



Come Back Alive - 'Thoughts and Prayers'

Agency: 10 Days

As the world watched what was starting to happen in Ukraine, the usual empty gestures flooded social feeds. Brands and agencies changed their logos to raise awareness of an event we were all very much aware of (the news does a good job of informing us about these things, you know), and people shared their thoughts and prayers. But it was 10 Days that encouraged action...and entertained. This isn’t an easy combination to execute, especially with such a sensitive subject, but when we get real and relatable, and use everyday language, we can inform effectively and make what we say interesting.



Virgin Atlantic - 'I Am What I Am'

Agency: Lucky Generals
When we don’t have much time or space to say stuff, writing a double meaning into a headline, endline or slogan is smart. So smart. In just four words, Virgin Atlantic’s latest line invites us to do two big things: travel with an airline unlike any other, and accept everyone. It’s a familiar phrase in everyday language. And it’s a product benefit, a brand purpose and a call to action in one. It’s brilliant.



Covid.com - 'A Word'

Agency: Wieden+Kennedy Portland

Now this is where effective copywriting techniques take centre stage and make an impact. Of course, the message is so important but what makes it so powerful is its delivery. Rhyme and repetition and alliteration combine in varying sentence lengths to communicate raw emotion and true feelings. The words flow, making a hard-hitting message land easily. Beautifully.



Halifax - 'It’s a People Thing'

Agency: New Commercial Arts

Where did the creativity go in audio? Too often, too many audio ads are just one voice simply describing a product or offer so this ad stood out when I heard it. It captures a moment we can all imagine and relate to. It’s like listening in on a real family conversation. It feels natural. Light and lovely. Entertaining. If the best ads are as entertaining as the entertainment they sit between, why aren’t we writing more audio ads like this? Creativity can live everywhere, not just on TV.



KFC - 'Around the Table'

Agency: MullenLowe Boston

The product. The product benefit. The brand name. The brand slogan. And repeat. This is how you tick off all the deliverables in the brief (including visual assets too), and show you’ve heard the audience and acknowledged their behaviours. In one fun and fluid script. When you know everything about who you are, what you do and who your audience is inside-out, you can make what you say so interesting, for everyone.

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High Five, Wed, 15 Jun 2022 11:30:03 GMT