Most advertising is bad because of bad copywriting.

Flat, lazy copywriting that strangles one cliche after the other in a failed attempt to gain some attention. Dull, boring copywriting that never gets noticed let alone acted on. Stupid copywriting that does more harm than good.

David Abbott was one of the greatest copywriters ever. David believed good copywriting comes from spending a lot of time on it. From revising, polishing and editing it.

Over the years he came up with five simple rules for good copywriting.

1. Put yourself into your work. Use your life to animate your copy. If something moves you, chances are it will touch someone else too.

2. Think visually. Ask someone to describe a spiral staircase and they’ll use their hands as well as words. Sometimes the best copy is no copy.

3. If you believe that facts persuade, you’d better learn how to write a list so that it doesn’t read like a list.

4. Confession is good for the soul and for copy too. A small admission gains a large acceptance.

5. Don’t be boring.

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