Fundamentals of Headlines, Copy and Design in Communication

By: Lee Hopkins

While there are many opinions about what constitutes good
headlines, copy and design, most professionals agree that these
individual elements of the ad must work together. In
combination, they must grab attention, convey a persuasive
message and portray a consistent identity.

An ad that's too cluttered can't convey a message quickly enough
to engage the reader or viewer. One that's out of character with
the product or service will be confusing rather than convincing.

An effective headline (or a broadcast ad's opening moments) must
immediately capture the audience's interest and pull them into
the ad. A good rule of thumb is to look for the inherent "drama"
in what you are offering, and capitalize on that to create an
alluring ad.

Examples: "We're Losing Our Minds" -- a university ad appealing
for funds.

And "You Don't Have to be Jewish to Love Levy's" -- a
bread company ad featuring a Chinese man biting into a whopping
pastrami sandwich.

Next, the photo or illustration amplifies the message. An ad for
Bull Worldwide Information Systems, for example, showed a
satellite photo of the earth with the headline "GloBull."

Once the headline and illustration have drawn the customer into
your ad, the copy convinces them to buy. So make it believable,
full of information, and bolstered with words and style that
complement your identity. Almost any Volkswagen or Mercedes Benz
print ad exemplifies convincing copy in a style that suits the
product perfectly.

Broadcast advertising will also involve selecting music, sound
effects, actors or announcers, and perhaps a theme song. All
these elements enhance your message and reinforce your identity
but, for the most partPsychology Articles, the copy and what it conveys actually do
the selling.

Copywriting
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