THE LEVISON LETTER
Action Ideas For Better Direct Mail,
E-mail, Web Sites & Advertising
Ivan Levison, Direct Response Copywriting
Volume: 22 Number: 2
Direct response copywriting -
Keep on truckin'
Think of pickup-truck advertising on TV and what comes
Macho guys heaving heavy loads onto truck beds.
Mud splattered pickups hurtling over bumpy ground. Everything is rough,
tough, and buff.
This is image advertising that derives its power from
imaginative identification. The emotional
logic is clear: if I buy one of these trucks, I join the club. I am
no longer the fifteen-pounds-
overweight couch potato. I am the farm hand, the construction worker,
This is nothing new. We've see it all before.
Yet, watching a recent football playoff game, I came
across a truck commercial that
handled things very differently, and I think, beautifully. Here it
(SHOT OF HAND HOLDING BRAKE SHOE) ANNOUNCER VOICE OVER:
"For years the front brakes on many half tons were THIS big.
(CUT TO HAND HOLDING A MUCH BIGGER BRAKE SHOE NEXT TO
COMPETITOR'S.) You wanted brakes THIS big. Bingo! Standard on the
Learn more at Toyota.com."
I urge you to check out the actual commercial at:
This commercial struck me as really quite unique in
the category. Instead of settling for
showing the generic pickup slogging through the mud, it emphasizes
a concrete, visible,
palpable difference between the Tundra and other pickups. It quite
brilliantly retains the
macho appeal of the image ad, while differentiating the product.
To put it simply, the commercial gives the viewer an
excellent REAL reason to consider
the pickup.(In other ads in the campaign, the Tundra engine and transmission
shown side by side against their puny competition.)
Bottom line? The copywriter, creating the spots for
the Toyota Tundra, was thinking
outside the box. Instead of producing another "me too" truck
commercial, the copywriter
used the old side-by-side comparison format, so beloved by packaged
like Pampers and Bounty, and beautifully adapts it to pickup-truck
What does this have to do with you and me?
A great deal, actually. Though we may never have to
promote pickup trucks, as marketers
and, ultimately, as sales people, WE have to constantly think outside
the box, just like the
copywriter on the truck commercial did. Our job is to rethink our
then apply our knowledge in creative and involving ways.
Only then can we make sure that profits keep on truckin'.
How To Get In Touch
Direct Response Copywriting
14 Los Cerros Drive
Greenbrae, CA 94904
Phone: (415) 461-0672
Fax: (415) 461-7738
Web Site: http://www.levison.com
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