For All Your [Fill-in-the-Blank] Needs

July 18, 2017
cli·ché (noun) – a phrase that is overused and betrays a lack of original thought Just for fun sometime, make a mental note of all the ads you encounter that contain these five words: “for all your __________ needs.”   Every time you hear or see that phrase, know that the copywriter […]

In the Studio with WSU Baseball Legend “Bobo” Brayton

July 7, 2017
In his feature story on Chuck “Bobo” Brayton following the legendary baseball coach’s death on March 28, 2015, writer Howie Stalwick provided a thoughtful summary of Bobo’s remarkable career. One sentence in particular made me smile: Brayton’s gravelly voice could often be heard on radio commercials during WSU baseball […]

“Hi, I’m Tom Bodett for Motel 6, still kickin’ butt.”

June 2, 2017
In 1992, Tom Bodett’s “Singing Phone Number” spot for Motel 6 took the $100,000 Grand Prize in that year’s Radio Mercury Awards.  Since then, his radio spots have been Mercury finalists or winners 22 more times, with another Grand Prize win in 2009 for his clever “DVD” spot. The 2017 […]

The Secret Behind Amazon’s “Retailer-Wrecking” Growth: Love

May 17, 2017
Time, Inc.’s Money Magazine reported last month that more than 80 million American households now subscribe to Amazon Prime. Let that number sink in: it represents approximately two-thirds of our nation’s population. Amazon Prime members pay $99 a year to get free 2-day shipping on their purchases plus immediate access to Amazon’s vast (and […]

Pet Dryers, Pedal-Powered Appliances, and Other Innovations

March 31, 2017
Over the years, Howard Hughes Appliance, Television, and Sleep Shop has introduced consumers to surprising innovations in the realm of home appliances. Some of the more notable breakthroughs in recent years: Pet drying attachments for clothes dryers Pedal-powered appliances for the fitness-minded Self-cleaning refrigerators Holographic Transport Television (HTTV) Surprising new […]

Effective Advertising and the Law of Exclusion

March 15, 2017
Is your business defined principally by what-you-sell or what-you-do? Are these the things you talk about in your advertising? May I suggest that you are also defined by what you won’t do or sell, by what you exclude. The principle of exclusion conveys that you’ve drawn a line in the sand, […]

Behind the Mic – “Coaching” William Shatner

March 10, 2017
When advertisers voice their own commercials, we want them to sound natural. Like themselves, not like “radio announcers.” So, we (sometimes, not always) coach them and rehearse with them, until they’re comfortable just talking. In this video, you’ll hear a producer “coach” William Shatner in exactly the opposite direction. It’s […]

On Radio Anything’s Possible

January 11, 2017
It’s well established that sounds enter the brain faster than visuals, and the memory of those sounds fades more slowly.  Which is why, as Paul Harvey once pointed out, as a kid in the classroom, you could answer the teacher’s question, “What did I just say?” accurately, even though you’d been […]

Don’t U Make These Mistake’s

September 9, 2016
One of the advantages of working in radio is that the stuff we write is heard, not seen. If there are misspellings or punctuation errors in the script, you won’t notice them. But when our counterparts at Old Smudgy fail to catch similar errors in their articles and ads, they become fair game for self-appointed grammar […]

Does Your Commercial Pass the Five-Second Test?

August 26, 2016
One of the best radio copywriters and producers in the business, Jeffrey Hedquist, recently shared his thoughts on how an ad writer or advertiser can gauge potential response to a commercial – preferably before it’s sent forth onto the airwaves.  He writes: Here’s a simple, but possibly painful test to perform […]
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