Psychology

Guess What People Are Thinking, and They’ll Mistske You For Their Own Mind.

Robert Peel

“Public opinion is a compound of folly, weakness, prejudice, wrong feeling, right feeling, obstinacy, and newspaper paragraphs.” – Robert Peel, Born Feb. 5, 1778. Some other famous advertising writer guy once said that persuading people was about entering into the conversation happening inside their own mind. But you don’t need to be a mind-reader to …

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Come Get Corrupted With Me And Let’s Get Rich (While Helping People)

Saul Alinsky

“Life is a corrupting process from the time a child learns to play his mother off against his father in the politics of when to go to bed; he who fears corruption fears life.” – Saul Alinsky, Born Jan. 30, 1909. A lot of advertising writers talk some bullshit like “I use persuasion, not manipulation” …

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Make Metaphors That Cut Like a Razor to the Throat

Anton Chekov

“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” – Anton Chekhov, Born Jan. 29, 1860. Show, don’t tell. It’s an old adage among screenwriters, who incidentally love Chekhov. So, it behooves us to remember that demonstration is the highest possible form of proving the effectiveness of a …

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Emotional Manipulation Through Shared Imagery (It’s Easy!)

Claes Oldenburg

“I am for the art of ice cream cones dropped on concrete.” – Claes Oldenburg, Born Jan. 28, 1929. This is our shared art also. The art of concise, visual imagery that evokes a reaction formed of personal emotions dredged from inside the audience, rather than from our words. These reactions are more powerful than …

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Copywriting isn’t “Life or Death” Except When It Is. (And It Always Is.)

Mordecai Richler

“Fundamentally, all writing is about the same thing; it’s about dying, about the brief flicker of time we have here, and the frustration that it creates.” – Mordecai Richler, Born. Jan. 27, 1931. We sellers of stuff, our products and services all directly or indirectly relate to death. Evading it. Escaping it. Thwarting it. Making …

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