Make the mundane memorable — add some humour to your copy


I recently wrote a post about website copy and storytelling, so I thought in this post, I’d share a couple of great examples of how imaginative copywriting can lift what would normally be plain and ordinary copy into the realm of the attention grabbing and memorable.

First up is an example of the oft seen “lost pet” poster. As I was walking home from work the other day I came across this great demonstration of how the mundane can be transformed with a little bit of wit. As those who know me will attest, I’m a bit of an animal lover, so whenever I see a lost pet poster I always take the time to read it. The following example however immediately implanted itself in my memory. Take a look at it and you’ll probably see why.

Photo of a poster looking for helping in finding a lost tortoise
The Tortoise is Missing

The second example comes courtesy of advertising copywriter Tim Gow who tweeted a link to this eBay advertisement a couple of weeks ago. Whilst the lost tortoise poster above uses a bit of wit to engage you and stick itself into your memory, the seller of a mint green Ford Focus took things to new heights — truly from the sublime to the ridiculous.

A screengrab of an eBay advert for a mint green Ford Focus
Inside its quite lovely, dark and mysterious but shiny and clean.

His advert must be one of the longest, and most surreal car advertisements in eBay history, and is certainly (for me at least) one of the most memorable. Here’s an extract:

The exterior of the car is generally in pretty good condition, there is some surface rust under the rear wheel arches (not that bad) and its had a small ding on the rear which has been tarted up a bit and doesn’t look that bad. There are a couple of places (arches, rear bumper) that have been resprayed in places probably due to surface rust in the past. I say resprayed, it actually looks like it’s been done by a drunken blind clown at night hanging upside down from a moving giraffe. Honestly, Ghandi could have done a better job slapping paint on with his flip flops. Estimated cost to have this resprayed by someone that isn’t mentally incapacitated is about £150-200 but who knows, maybe you aren’t the picky type and just want a motor that runs well, is comfy and proper posh on the inside.

You can view the full ad in all its glory here. If it’s no longer available, clicking the image above will open a screengrab of the full web page.

Hopefully these two examples will offer some inspiration to those looking to find ways of spicing up everyday copy.

About the Author

Nick Irons

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Nick Irons is Co-founder and Creative Director of Tribus Creative Ltd., a brand communications company for small businesses. He spent almost fifteen years in the entertainment industry as a writer, producer, and performer, before moving into branding and design consultancy. He is a fervent believer in the power of storytelling to unlock the value in brands both big and small.