Home Marketing and Communications Scientific Advertising

Scientific Advertising
Read in 19 min.
Listen in 24 min.
Learn the key ideas of the book by Claude C. Hopkins

Scientific Advertising

Learn how to write effective advertisements

Advertising exists to sell something to someone. To make advertising a safe investment, you must understand how to sell a product, and what drives a consumer to buy. In the book, Scientific Advertising, which still today, remains a timeless classic of modern marketing, the great American advertiser, Claude C. Hopkins, brought together everything he had learned in over thirty years of experience in the field, collected through empirical observations and data collection from his numerous advertising campaigns, some of which were hugely successful, others, total failures. Scientific Advertising is the book everyone should start from, to understand how advertising works, and how to measure results.

Scientific Advertising
Read in 19 min.
Listen in 24 min.

Advertising is only effective if it manages to generate a profit, and to do so, there are certain rules that need to be followed

The term advertising indicates the set of communication techniques used to sell goods or services. Over the years, advertising has gone from being something similar to gambling, - it could go well, or it could go wrong, just like when you place a bet - to being one of the safest and most profitable entrepreneurial endeavours:as long as it is done according to a certain set of rules. This change was made possible by comparing and testing the results of thousands of advertising campaigns worked on by a number of large agencies. The agencies involved continue to be the custodians of the most detailed knowledge of this field because, despite the changing of teams over the years, they have kept copies of all of the advertising campaigns that have been carried out, and their results, both positive and negative. Therefore, in the advertising field, we started to see the emergence of what, in the scientific field, is called "literature", that is, a series of cases from which to draw lessons and then, once consolidated in practice, new principles on which to base an advertising strategy. 

Having fundamental principles on which to base one's advertising strategy allows the individual professionals involved not to have to start from scratch every time, but to navigate routes already traced by those who have trodden that path before them. This saves time and money, and guarantees success. Today, in fact, if an advertising company goes under - which is still possible - it is because it has not taken the cornerstones of advertising into account.

To draw up these rules, the public response to advertising was studied. The main sector that this data was drawn from was that of mail order, as in this area, everything is tracked: from the cost per response to the presale cost, from the marketing levers used to the creative devices involved, and even the general parametres set for each individual advertising campaign. Furthermore, in mail order sales, it is also very easy to compare two different advertising strategies.


The key ideas of "Scientific Advertising"

Advertising is only effective if it manages to generate a profit, and to do so, there are certain rules that need to be followed
Advertising is nothing more than knowing how to sell something to someone, but at a greater scale, and without human interaction
Curiosity drives people to buy, and they often judge a product by price, even if they aren’t familiar with it
Advertising must only be based on comparable data, avoiding the personal opinions of experts
To interest a particular customer, you need to create an advertising campaign based on specific statements, rather than generalisations, platitudes, or exaggerations
Writing the title is the most delicate part of an advertising campaign
Whether it be long or short, the story of our product must be told exhaustively
To sell, your product needs to stand out from the crowd, and to do so, it must have a distinctive trait
The product itself is its own best salesperson, which is why the technique of giving free samples to the customer is one of the most used sales tactics
Take-home message
4books preview

Try 4books Premium for free!