Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Copywriting Challenge #1 - Can You Top This Copy?

Ready to go on a mission to save the world? AND get your “name in lights”? PLUS win a genuine Early to Rise hat and T-shirt?

Good, because I’m looking for some volunteers. Now mind you, I’m not talking about stopping global warming, ending the war, or turning “green”.

I just want to make the world safe for… readers. Yes, it’s time to put an end to The Plague of Bad Copy that threatens the planet.

Take a ride around your town and you’ll see it on signs everywhere you turn. Self absorbed… inner directed… and completely without benefit to the reader.

Here’s an example of one I came across just the other day outside a local strip mall.

“ALL TENANTS OPEN DURING CONSTRUCTION”

“Tenants open”? Why should I care about “tenants”?

Obviously the mall owners created this sign to appease their renters…

But what they really should be doing is appeasing their “tenant’s” customers. You and me.

Wouldn’t something like this be more likely to attract shoppers:

“All Our Friendly Shops Open While We’re Sprucing Up!”

I bet you can come up with even better suggestions.

Sure, we can’t expect every retailer and landlord to be professional copywriters - or even well-educated Early to Risers.

But why not lend them a hand - and have a little fun at the same time? So here’s what I propose…

Send me a digital photo of the worst copy you can find. I’ll post it and ask our readers in ETR to suggest better alternatives. Then we’ll take a vote, and maybe even send a copy of the winning entry to the offending “author” if we can track them down.

By the way, here’s one of my favorite examples of a GOOD store sign. I came across one outside Gray’s Papaya in New York City a few years ago:

“OUR HOT DOG – The Thunderous Pop When You Bite Into It – The Saline Tang of the Pink Flesh – Oh YES!! (Please I’m Getting Hungry Already!).

Now that’s got some appeal, don’t you think? It’s almost… erotic, dare I say.

A bit more inviting than “tenants open during construction.”

OK So here’s what to do right now.

Think about better copy for that sign outside the Mall that is open during construction.

Then, post your copy in the comments section below. Next week I’ll take a vote from our readers in ETR, and the winner gets their name in lights and a genuine Early to Rise hat and T-shirt with our compliments.

Meanwhile, when you come across a bad sign in your town, email it to me at Charlie@ETRFeedback.Com.


We might just make it the subject of our next Copywriting Challenge!

32 comments:

Jason Hulott said...

"You think the outside looks bad!

Come on in and check out what we done inside!"

Nashville G-man said...

"Facelift in progress--All stores open"

Deron said...

You must excuse the mess,
the most marvelous shops
remain open inside.

Jaq said...

We're changing - but we didn't lock the doors ;-)

shazzboh said...

Don't mind the dust! To better serve you, our stores are open during remodeling.

Lindylou said...

How about:
"Come on in! We're open for business — rain, shine ... or construction.

Jeff said...

The construction look is just a cover for the shy guys to shop.
Our shops are really open. (wink)

Justyn said...

You're mall is still open for you during construction.

PokerRules said...

BARGAINS
Under Construction
INSIDE!

---------------or------------------

Shhh! With Prices This PRETTY
Our Shops Have To Wear
This Ugly Old Disguise!


---------------or------------------

Are YOU Deep enough
to see Beyond this scaffold skin?
We're OPEN, Smiling, and Ready
To Welcome YOU Within...

---------------or------------------

Ch-Ch-Changing with the times, but...
STILL FUN! STILL FABULOUS!
And STILL OPEN TO SERVE YOU!

---------------or------------------

WELCOME!
BEFORE YOU COME INSIDE
TO SHOP AND SPEND A WHILE
PLEASE IGNORE THE BUILDER'S BRACES
ON OUR ABOUT-TO-BE PERFECT SMILE


---------------or------------------

OPEN
and
OVER-COMPENSATING
on the
INSIDE!

-----------------------------------

ken from philly said...

Look up. Look down. Look at your thumb. Gee, you're smart since your favorite store is open during this fun!

EHammer said...

We're Giving the Mall a Facelift!
Friendly and Relaxed Shopping
Right Through This Door!

Mike Mann said...

"Massive Under Construction Sale!"
"Hurry in to our stores - When the dust is gone, so are the deals!"
"You clean up while we fix up!"


Mike Mann
Minden, NV

PokerRules said...

Hi, I think I have too much time on my hands... because here are some more!

-----------------------------------

HELP! Beautify
Our Premises
With Your Presence!

----------------or-----------------

Building A Better Future
For Our Customers
Today -- Come In NOW and Be Presently Surprised!

----------------or-----------------

Bargains and Treats Just Waiting To Be Sold
So, Please -- Don't Be Put Off By A Bit Of Scaffold!

----------------or-----------------

Please Do Not Feed The Builders
On Your Way In And Out Of Our SHOPS
(No Matter How CUTE They Are)!

----------------or-----------------

EXCITEMENT BUILDING...
SHOP AND FEEL IT NOW!

-----------------------------------

Jennifer Herrera said...

Don't let our face-lift faze you!
Please continue to shop while we "get a little work done."

Janelle said...

"Get Your Goodies Before We're Glamorous!"

karlc said...

We're getting a facelift to make you look even better

COxford said...

OUR FINE TENANTS ARE PRESENTLY OFFERING THE SAME GREAT MERCHANDIS AND SERVICES AS ALWAYS.

Jennie said...

All our shops are open during construction work. Welcome!

renoblueslover said...

Shops open during construction.

or

Pardon our dust! We're open during remodeling.

Shel Horowitz, author, Principled Profit said...

You Always Wanted to Wear a Hard Hat--We'll Lend You One While You Shop

or

To Bring You a Beautiful Place to Shop (we have to go through this ugly part to get there). All stores open for you

Shel Horowitz, http://www.frugalmarketing.com

David said...

All shops open during remodel.

FREE EXTRA PARKING at Acme Parking Garage while you shop.

Just ask at the shop for the validation.

Yes, even browsers park free.

David Eller

momaluta said...

GREAT VALUES!

Shop Like Hell During Our Heavenly Remodel!

Joanne said...

SHOP IF YOU WISH
WHILE WE REFURBISH

jimboinCO4good said...

Ignore the mess outside ... Just c'mon inside where we're always cleaning up!

jimboinCO4good said...

Caution!!! New security system being installed. Please leave your valuables (e.g. purse, pocketbook, wallet) at the concierge counter inside the door.

FocusCopywriter said...

SAVE MONEY ON CONSTRUCTION SPECIALS
All Shops Offering "Dirty Discounts"

Hedgewizard said...

Here's a few:

Come on in! Everyone's waiting for you inside!
===============
Why are you standing out there? We're all waiting for you inside!
===============
This condition won't last -- and neither will the savings inside!
===============
Don't mind the new look; all your old friends are still inside waiting for you.

confidentwise said...

ALL STORES OPEN DURING CONSTRUCTION

BlackDragon said...

CONSTRUCTION SALE!
Our mess is YOUR savings!

Rick said...

"Please don't judge our book by this cover. Come explore the hidden gems inside."

btw Charlie, I love your blog title, SideByrnes. that's excellent.

MiracleGirl said...

A Magical Kingdom of Shopping awaits - for those brave enough to walk through these doors!

Charlie Byrne said...

Great comments gang. It's going to be tough narrowing these down for a vote on ETR... More on that later... - Charlie.