Creative Ideas Need Words
Creative ideas are vitally important, but they are only the start. The idea must be translated into words and pictures-the right words and pictures. Only then is the creative idea of any value to the advertiser. John Pullen aptly explained the importance of words and pictures when he said
The idea is only the beginning. A good idea can be obscured by a beautiful smoke screen of ungoverned “creativity.” It can be dropped before it has had time to penetrate. Or it can be expressed so poorly that the value of the idea is lost.
The selling idea is the framework. But words give it flesh and blood, make it live and breathe in direct proportion to the vitality of a quality that seems to be inherent in words themselves.
As proof of this, you can start with a selling idea and assign it to six writers. One will produce a great campaign, while the score for the others will be perhaps four good and one average. The idea is the same, but there are astonishing differences in the way it springs to life.
“Cease motion, observe carefully and note sound of approaching train” can’t compare
with “Stop, look and listen !”
“We won’t let them get by” is a pale substitute for “They shall not pass ”
“A diamond will last forever” would not last long in comparison with “A diamond is forever. . . .”
The Bible says that a word fitly spoken is like apple silver. It is also like gold in the pocket of an advertiser.’
Leo Burnett was paying appropriate tribute to the importance of the writer when he said:
After all the meetings are over, the phones have stopped ringing and the vocalising has died down, somebody has to get out an ad, often after hours. Somebody has to stare at a blank piece of paper. Probably nothing was ever more bleak. This is probably the very height of lonesomeness. He is one person and he is alone-all by himself alone. Out of the recesses of his mind must come words which interest, words which persuade, words which inspire, words which sell.