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Copy I wish I’d written

This is quite possibly the first and only time you’ll see a fart joke in product advertising. But it works a treat. Another ad in Scrabble’s campaign reads: “The only time you will be delighted to get syphilis.” Fun with words that surprises and delights. Just like the game.  

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Writing business: this week at Vernacular

Customer case studies kept us busy this week. We interviewed the CIO of a state-owned enterprise to understand why he moved his organisation’s IT from a legacy platform to the cloud and how our client’s technology helped him do the job. We loved writing the case study about a one-time IT contractor who developed and…

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Advertising copy

Advertising copy I wish I’d written

I love this advertising copy for web TV service Tivibu. The mashup of blockbuster movie title Lord of the Rings with life’s most recognisable interruption – a ringing telephone – tells us about Tivibu’s catalogue and the central beauty of on-demand TV: personal control. All this with just two extra ‘rings’ – seven words in…

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Celebrate the spade

We love concrete nouns. That’s why we put one at the centre of Vernacular’s latest advertisement. It’s a spade. Not a manual earth relocating implement. A spade by another name sets off a reader’s BS detector. And the second that happens you are doomed. Be clear, vivid and real.  

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Just the good stuff

The best bits from around the web – US POLITICS The lessons of Baltimore. The worst public schools do one thing very well – they teach poor black kids how to stay in the American underclass. SOCIETY The future of loneliness. David Brooks: ‘I’m paid to be a narcissistic blowhard’. The Psychology of Inevitable Earthquakes.COMMUNICATION…

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Just the good stuff

This week’s best bits from around the web. CONFLICT Studying jihad? … Why Britain’s universities produce so many radical Islamists. What to Worry About in an Iran Nuclear Deal. FINANCE AND ECONOMICS Milk and economic development … No use crying. SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY How Facebook’s Chief Geek Will Meld Reality With the Oculus. How Music…

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Business case studies: are yours putting readers to sleep?

Mystery and suspense keep people reading. But delivering knife-edge moments is tough work when subject matter is devoid of main characters and flashpoints. Is this why so much business writing is boring? Just the facts, a few more features, that’ll do nicely. Business technology providers are the biggest sinners. And they know it. Their software…

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Business writing and killer zombies

Readers want to know who is doing what. They need humans and active verbs. Without them your message withers and dies. Nominalisations are often to blame – nouns made from other parts of speech that express complex ideas. They trick unwary writers into killing off simple nouns and verbs and turn prose to sludge. Here’s…

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I like words

When copywriter Robert Pirosh arrived in Hollywood in 1934, eager to land a screenwriter job, he could have penned a letter stating his intention. How far it might have taken him, who knows. But Pirosh was smarter than that. His paean landed three interviews and a job as a junior writer with MGM. Pirosh went on to write…

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Just the good stuff

This week’s best bits from around the web. ECONOMICS – American shopper: The world is once again relying too much on American consumers to power growth OPINION – WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT MACHINES THAT THINK? – Freedom vs security: freedom at any cost? What are we willing to sacrifice to feel safe? Are we…

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