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How to Write a Good Advertisement

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  413 ratings  ·  25 reviews
2015 Reprint of 1962 Edition. Exact facsimile of the original edition, not reproduced with Optical Recognition Software. This is in effect a short course in copywriting, wherein Schwab offers concise, specific and tested information on every phase of copywriting, including: 100 good headlines and why they work; What the Illustration should and should not do; 22 ways to hol ...more
Paperback, 252 pages
Published October 5th 2015 by Martino Fine Books (first published June 1980)
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May 06, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's good enough book about copywriting.
But, for some reason, I have found it really boring. It's not easy to grasp through these chapters like with other similar books.
It took me a long time to finally read it completely, and I did it only because Gary Halbert suggested it in his Hands on Experience blog post.

If you really need it for some reason read it.
If you just want to quickly learn some theory in this area feel free to take some of those books published in the last 20 years and you are s
Jon Xavier
Nov 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My favorite of the "classics" of copywriting. Some of the other books that come up again and again in discussions of copywriting can sometimes feel a little too theoretical to be actionable. Not How to Write a Good Advertisement. It's written in a really engaging style, it's chock full of useful examples with great commentary by the author, and it lays out the process of writing an ad step-by-step. ...more
Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Are you a copywriter? Then you've got to read this book. Like...mandatory. It's basically a text book but it reads well. Trust me, you'll get a lot from it. Only if you like being good at what you do. ...more
Carson Quarnberg
Read this one for work. It's fine, has some good theory points for a beginner like me. It's also sexist though lmao but I mean, go figure ...more
Feb 04, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: writing
Very old book, but the basic principles still seem sound. I particularly liked that the writing is very straightforward and unpretentious.

The thing I noticed is that it seems many of these ideas would apply to all kinds of "selling", not just advertising.

Hence, if you need to write things that persuade people, you could probably pick up some tips from here.
Sep 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: advertising
Very good book with sample headlines and ads. It shows how to properly construct ads for sales. A classic advertising book.
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I expected it to have a tad more revelations. It was interesting to hear about how long copy doesn't necessarily deter people but I have to say, the copy on that was so long that I couldn't recap WHY exactly. The list of good headlines was interesting but outdated. It's a book written in the 60s that naturally has objective truths and cultural truths more representative of the time than ALL TIME. It's not terribly relevant to SEO-friendly copy and AI writing of course. It's not a good sign that ...more
Aldo Scott
Jun 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great book that illustrates its points with examples. I could have used more of them in section regarding the body copy of an ad.

Read this book and gain a clear understanding of the structure of an advertisement.
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Worthy of a dozen re-reads.
Ivan Kreimer
Jun 06, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
A pretty dated book on advertising that still provides good value to anyone who wants to learn a new copywriting framework and rehash the same old yet effective techniques everyone knows.
Connor Broderick
May 15, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Meh it was pretty. dece
Tony Parkins
Feb 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An absolute must read if you write advertisement copy.
Keno Castro
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-improvement
Contains many important information... But very very boring
Don Sevcik
Oct 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books on copywriting and advertising mentality I've ever read. Straight advice, humor, and lessons learned in the trenches give you the skills to improve.

There is gold in the old!
Will Jefferies
Dec 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little dated in the internet era but great info.
Bruce Harpham
May 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: marketing
Discovered this book through John Carlton's recommendation. It is an excellent classic book on the art of writing advertising copy. Don't let the references to newspaper advertising and direct mail put you off. The principles of testing, headlines and more all still apply. I've highlighted quite a few passages and plan to return to it later. If you read "Scientific Advertising" and want to find another classic text from decades ago, this one is for you (along with the Robert Collier Letter Book) ...more
Geoffrey Yumul
Jun 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Would you be mistaken for skipping on this book?

Its psychology on human behavior is as timely.
Its methods are proven.
The examples may be old, but don't get lazy reading between the lines. You'll definitely learn something.
Want to get past AIDA, this is going to be a fresh approach for you?
Lots of names and books referenced. You'll want to find those old books!
You'll read expert advise from a person who has done it.

You can't take my word for it. You just owe it to yourself to read it. Go ahead, y
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot to take from this book, but again like many great copy books, so much is dated in the internet age. I would love to see a similar format updated for today's society.
I.e., breakdown analyses of specific print mailings versus general magazine ads are useful in principle to learn how to think, but not so practically useful anymore...what about email list mailings, which are essentially free? That changes the game significantly...
Christian Jespersen
If this book was an ad, I would not buy it.
I didn't like the wait was written and there were too many chapters with no real use.

Many of the bullet list were highlighted and I will definitely read them again and implement them in my writing.

But you are much better of reading or rereading Ogilvy on Advertising.
Cathy Kelly
Nov 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wish it was a shorter course!

Helpful information. Somewhat outdated and verbose. Lots of “as so and so said” for examples. I will be tested on this information, so the quizzes at the end of each chapter will be my study review.
Fotis Chatzinicolaou
Καλό αν και δεδομένου ότι είναι γραμμένο το 50, αρκετό από το υλικό φαίνεται (τουλάχιστον σε μένα) outdated.
Luke Tucker
Nov 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
one i will often reference. headline formulas, writing tips, advertising and sales pragmatism. Took a lot of notes on this one.
Mateusz Wis
Mar 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is a must-read for every business owner

If you want to understand copywriting and learn it- this is the way to do it. Read this book now.
May 07, 2013 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cara by: Danny Iny
Shelves: business
one of Danny Iny's top 3 on copywriting ...more
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Victor Opper Schwab was born on March 13, 1898 in Hoboken, New Jersey. Son of Albert James and Letitia (Irvine) Schwab. At the age of 19 he enrolled as a night student at Columbia University where he met Max Sackheim, then copy chief for a leading mail order ad agency, Ruthrauff & Ryan. Sackheim hired Schwab as his private secretary because he could take shorthand. However, his contributions to ma ...more

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