58. Copywriting: The Good, The Bad, and The Really Embarrassing

No “real” post today, just going to share some stuff that I’ve written yesterday and today. One is a copy for a church event, and the other is a candidate for “worst copywriting blunders in history”.

I received the request for a short copy (1 sentence) for the church event about last Saturday. Being me, I thought I’d let the thought marinade for a little bit, and the next thing I knew, it was already Tuesday. So after a class test (which did not turn out as well as it could have due to a number of factors, which all can be traced back to the main cause, which was my dad taking my car to Malacca at 5A.M.), I found myself at McDonalds in Kota Damansara having lunch, and there was still some time to spare before I had to go over to church for the content creation training scheduled at 3P.M.

It was a good time as any to get actual work done, so I had written this. Being me again, I demonstrated a complete and total inability to follow basic instructions, and had come up with an epic copy instead of the requested 1 sentence (which was specified to be no more than 10 words long).

For The Takeover 2013 (a youth/young adults church event):

All your life you’ve been waiting. Learning. Getting ready for that one day when the ball would be passed to your court, and it’d be up to you to make the game-changing difference. All your life you’ve told yourself, “soon”. Not today, “soon”. Not tomorrow, “soon”.

To-morrow, to-morrow, and to-morrow. Life is far too short to be spent waiting. For that one event. For that one chance. The rest of your life begins today. It begins now. Now is the moment you’ve been preparing for. It’s time to step out into the arena. Time to show them what you’ve got.

The world is watching. Ready or not – it’s our turn now.

I found out about 15 minutes ago that these words do not translate too well into video format. Guess there’s always more things to figure out. I told the publicity team to just pick whichever line they liked from the wall of text I gave them (more choices is better for them, right?), but they’re not having any of that.

Except for the event organizer himself, who thinks it’s bleeding genius. Who am I to say otherwise?

YESTERDAY

I was writing a copy for a milk brand’s print ad, and I thought that I’ll write something that identifies with its audience (women professionals aged 25-45). And so I had come up with a headline which I thought fit the bill. After I had written it, I sensed that something was wrong with the copy, but couldn’t quite put my finger on it. I stared at it for about 5 seconds before I realized exactly what was wrong with the words that I had written. The headline read:

“Healthy, simple, and easy – just like you.”

IT WAS AN HONEST MISTAKE. I SWEAR.

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