This long running ad from the child psychology market sheds some light.
Here’s the powerful, yet economic headline that froze frustrated parents in their tracks for years:
“Mouthy, disrespectful or resistant to authority?”
As a father of three young kids, it’s something I experience daily. And, this ad nails that feeling in the copy.
Though the product, The Total Transformation Program, is still going strong, the print ad is no longer running. (Don’t ask why.) But any ad that’s had hundreds of insertions over the course of five years is worth understanding.
After this quarter page ad hit the press in mid-2005, the advertiser couldn’t buy enough space.
Defiant Child? was the control during the ad’s run and we know this because the advertiser tested it! This is what direct response is all about — the only data that’s worth anything comes from testing.
Once you know you’ve got a winner out there, it gives you tremendous leeway. The ad went from 1/4 page to 3/4 page insertions and from regional market newspapers to The New York Times.
Other than the overuse of ” How To…” in the bullets — which is a mistake even pros make — I like everything about this ad.
The pictures played a big role in the success of the ad, as did the bonus, “10 Ways To Turn Around Your Child’s Attitude in One Minute or Less.” Ditto for the product name, Total Transformation.
And, Defiant Child? is proof that the two-step ad is still alive and well in many markets.
Little ads like these can make a mint and when you see them running over and over again, don’t just tear them out and put them in a folder. Take the extra step and phone the call center. That’s where the magic really happens.