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Basic rules for successful advertising texts

21. January 2020

Winning customers with creativity


Good advertising texts for the target group in question

Advertising texts are intended to arouse or increase interest in a particular product or service. They thus have a decisive function. Let them promote sales. In doing so, advertising texts use language that is as catchy as possible. Otherwise they will not reach the addressee.


But that is easier said than done. It is not just a question of how a catchy text is created. Advertising texts always have a specific target group. Different groups want to be addressed differently. This naturally has consequences for the text. Young people, for example, sometimes have their very own vocabulary.


The assumed level of education also influences advertising texts. Technical terms should therefore be avoided. Unless the text is explicitly aimed at a highly qualified audience. Of course, advertising texts often use technical terms even for non-academics. For example, when special competence is to be suggested.


There are also advertising texts that do not immediately stand out as such. For example, when they do not directly advertise a product but want to promote the reputation of a company. In weekly newspapers, for example, there are articles whose commercial character is often only apparent from the reference “advertisement”.



A few basic rules

With all the variety of advertising methods, there are a few basic rules in addition to considering the target group. Most advertising texts have a multi-part headline (title and subtitle), a continuous text as well as a call to action.



Make it clear to the reader how to get to the product

Calls for action do not necessarily mean that the reader should buy the product quickly. For, depending on the case, the prospective customer must first find out how to get the praised item. Perhaps he has to visit a certain Internet page. Or perhaps he only has a small time window available for the purchase.


Some advertising texts build up real pressure on the reader according to the motto: “Act now or it’s too late. As a rule, calls for action should come at the end. That way they are most likely to be remembered. And it is suggested to the reader that it is now his turn to act.



Emphasizing the unique

In the case of concrete product advertising, the text should of course highlight the (supposedly) special, unique features of the object of purchase. What distinguishes the product from similar or identical products of another brand? And even more fundamentally: Why or for what does the reader (allegedly) need it?



Concrete stylistic devices


Metaphors and emotions

Let us now talk a little more about individual stylistic devices. Advertising should at least attract the attention of a potential customer. Otherwise it has already lost. This is often achieved by means of a pictorial language that stimulates the head cinema. After all, hardly anyone reads a meaningless factual text unless they have to.


It is also helpful to arouse emotions. Advertising often plays with fears and presents the product as a saviour in times of need. Of course, one should not overdo it. If you put too much pressure on the reader or intimidate him too much, he will turn away.


An emotion that advertising likes to play with is the strongest emotion of all. Hardly any of us can even drive to work without being confronted with provocative sayings and images.



The right product placement

Advertising texts also often rely on a special linguistic joke. Because when we laugh at a message, we tend to remember it. And we also like to pass it on. But you must not forget to place the product correctly. Otherwise, the reader may just remember the joke without paying attention to the actual purchase goal.


In general, the product must also be cleverly placed. But of course it must not appear at the end of the text. The interested party should learn something about it. Admittedly, some advertising texts also like to play with the fact that they only inform the reader at the end. This is then again a stylistic device of its own.


Just as the product should not fade away in the face of a particularly funny advertising message, it should not fade away when using other strong emotions. For example, if the text has a particularly provocative illustration without reference to the advertising message, this is easily overlooked.



Do not write without a dot without a comma

Furthermore, a text must not overwhelm its readers with awkward phrases. This is by no means only true if the message is not intended for academics. For a sentence to be memorable, it should be short and concise.


On the other hand, the wording must be balanced. If sentences of a similar style are endlessly strung together, it quickly becomes boring. Advertising texts must therefore also be written in a varied manner, without discouraging the reader with, for example, boxy sentences.


Because the texts are supposed to grab the reader so far that he feels the real need to do something for the advertised product. For example, to think about it the next time they go shopping. Or to get up from the couch immediately and drive to the delicatessen.



The right thing around

A catchy headline is needed to attract attention. After all, why should the potential customer read the text if he or she does not notice the headline? There are many possibilities for a gripping headline.


The question is rather how to get one. It can consist of a slightly provocative question. Or it can promise the reader something. Another possible stylistic device is to refer the reader directly to the text. Of course, headings always refer to the following text. But there are certain words that produce this effect by themselves. For example “here” or “so”.


However, good advertising texts are not only characterized by creativity. There are also more technical things like the structure or possible illustrations. In short, the entire layout.



Advertising texts on the Internet

There are a few additional things to consider on the Internet. For a text to be found quickly by Google, Bing & Co., it must meet certain ‘technical’ requirements. These include keywords, certain search-relevant terms. SEO agencies are masters of the interplay of such rather informatic tricks and creativity. They are professionals for the successful, search engine optimized creation of websites.


They offer these skills, which are as diverse as they are practical, to anyone who wants to increase their turnover by means of an appealing presence on the Internet. Nowadays this is becoming more and more important. In the professional world this service is called buying or creating content.


All texts on your commercial Internet presence are ultimately advertising texts. Because you want to win or bind customers with them.


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