Turning weakness into strength

by Tom Albrighton 26 April 2019 Blog, Copywriting

If you’re struggling to find that one key benefit or USP to hang your copy on, you could try turning a ‘so what?’ aspect of the product into a benefit, possibly throwing some shade at competitors in the process.

Avis, the car-hire firm, did just that with its famous 1962 slogan: ‘We try harder.’

Avis’ slogan ‘We try harder.’

Hertz was the market leader at the time, and Avis was in second place. While choosing the market leader can be very reassuring to customers, choosing second place might just feel like second best.

Avis turned that on its head by suggesting that the market leader might be complacent, while the runner-up had something to prove – and that meant better service.

However, you don’t have to be a market leader to pull this trick. Check out this copy from the entrance lobby of a gym near me in Norwich.

Gym Group copy on wall reads ‘Start your workout here – we’re on the top floor!’

(See image; copy on wall reads ‘Start your workout here – we’re on the top floor!’)

By moving the temporal boundary of the workout, this smartly reframes a disadvantage (poor accessibility) as, if not an actual advantage, at least something you don’t mind.

And even if you do mind, you might still smile at the cheek of the copy.

Learn about loads more creative strategies in chapter 9 of Copywriting Made Simple.

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