David Ogilvy and Relevancy

I re-read David Ogilvy’s “Ogilvy on Advertising”, his 30+ year old tome about advertising, writing and design. You’ll immediately be reminded of why the core of what we do is just as relevant today as it was when were much younger.

David worked his advertising craft in the from the late 1930’s through the late 1990’s, most intensely in the 50’s, 60’s and early 70’s. I had hoped to do a quick recap of his career, but there are so many moving parts, mergers and office and home locations that it’s downright impossible to follow. Better, here’s a link to the Wikipedia info on Ogilvy & Mather, and another to David.

David Ogilvy

Here are five of my favorite Ogilvy ideas:

“The consumer isn’t a moron. She is your wife.”

“In the modern world of business, it is useless to be a creative, original thinker unless you can also sell what you create.”

“On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”

“Do not address your readers as though they were gathered together in a stadium. When people read your copy, they are alone.”

“If you’re trying to persuade people to do something, or buy something, it seems to me you should use their language, the language they use every day, the language in which they think.”