You’re Bringin’ On The Facepalm

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Sometimes … okay, I’m being generous there … all too frequently we writers are saddled with insurmountable problems before we even start.

It’s called bad information.

More specifically, it’s called, “Here’s what the client told me they want. Write it.” **facepalm**

This is how we end up with requests like a sports bar/restaurant that wants to encourage dine-in FAMILY eating by instructing people to call a place that doesn’t need reservations and checking out their Facebook page for specials and events. Oh, by the way, you also need to keep it “lively, fun, and youthful sounding,” because we wouldn’t want to offend the core customer of younger, booze-infused sports fans.

Because, let’s face it, if there is a bar, the big margins are on the drinks! Does that 1 oz. shot of whiskey REALLY cost 6 bucks? Uh, no. No it doesn’t. Not even retail.

OH YEAH! We also need to change it up every day of the week, because they have daily specials. Nothing to do with that family dining they want to emphasize, but squeeze it in there, m’kay? And remember, must have the phone number … because, uh, reasons.

Here’s what should happen when this request comes in. Continue reading

The Dangling Conversation

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ConversationsClients love to dangle it out there.

The request you have every God-given right to dread.

The two voicer.

It sounds innocent. Oh, yes, it sounds innocent. Innocent like a three year old with a Popsicle on a hot, sunny July afternoon, you’re thinking. No, this … this is a 100 megaton H-Bomb in a Sunday dress. And should you treat it the same way – with a radiation suit.

When I see the request for a “two voicer” or “two person conversation” on a copy order, I’m filled with dread.

“Why,” you may ask. It’s a reasonable question. Continue reading

You Say Nothing at All

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smiling-poop-emojiBut, but, BUT! I filled that 30 seconds with all of the information the client wanted! Squeezed in every last banality!

Congrats. You’ve just crafted an audio print ad and used a small font.

The client doesn’t know what they need! Yes, they know what they WANT. They WANT to sell copious amounts of widgets or gizmos or whatsits or, better still, UNITS! Oh, YES, we have UNITS for sale! Come buy our UNITS!

Here’s a hard truth that they won’t like to hear. Your client is horribly unqualified at crafting an effective radio ad. Continue reading

The Beginning

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Because where else can one start? Okay, so in dramatic style, I suppose one COULD start with the end. But really, hasn’t that device been used in enough movies and TV series already?

Welcome, intrepid reader, to my “Hello world!” To those unfamiliar with programming, which, I suspect, is most of you, that is normally the very first program written in every computer language. A few quick, simple, copied from example lines that prints “Hello world!” on your monitor.  Thrilling stuff, to be sure.

Certainly, radio advertising has more than its fair share of hello world’s out there. We call them clichés. You know what I mean. You’ve used them all yourself at one point. You’re thinking about several right now. Now you’re all, like, “DUDE! GET OUT OF MY FREAKIN’ HEAD! AH! COBRAS!” Continue reading