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Tips from the Boosters: Clarity Comes Out On Top

August 25th, 2011 by

Clarity almost always wins.

 

That’s the theme I keep seeing in our winning ads: they more clearly communicate key benefits or the nature of the product or service than the previous champion.

 

So, yes, even in the world of Google Ad Words, where the brutal character limitations often force a kind of PPC Shorthand onto the ad writer, the more cleanly expressed proposition can — and often does — win out over the info and benefit-stuffed competitor.

 

But here’s the hook: clarity is less about words than mental imagery.  Clear, vivid, mental images win out over clear language  that conveys nothing but abstractions or plain vanilla imagery.

 

So when you aim for clarity, aim for clairy of imagery.

 

And that’s exactly the strategic approached that Seajay113 took when he tweaked this ad for Square to produce a 65% lift in CTR:

 

Tips from the Boosters PPC ad text comparison

 

And here’s how he put that strategy into action:

 

“I basically tried to take the essence of the old champion and make the copy tidier:

 

First, I cut out the descriptors “iPhone, iPad, Android” and replaced it with Smartphone because everyone knows what a smart phone entails.

 

I think the Square is a really cool device so I didn’t need to dedicate space to name dropping apple products because it is more important to make it clear what the device does in this case. ”

 

Second, although “accept credit cards on your —” makes sense when you already know what the device does, I think my change to “on the go” made a huge difference because it has the reader imagining a device that you literally are swiping a credit that is attached to a smart phone.

 

Also I think the Free Device & App at the end adds a lot because it forces the ad reader to make the mental connection that it is a functioning addition to a phone, not something that they will have to spend time to figure out.”

 

And there you have it folks!

 

So the next time you’re tweaking and testing your PPC Ads, try a little clarity – and make sure to aim for clarity of imagery.

Comments

comments

2 Responses to “Tips from the Boosters: Clarity Comes Out On Top”

  1. Artur says:

    Is the improvement also tied to name recognition? It would seem to me that the new champion can only perform better because there is already some knowledge of the product/service, so an initial glance at the ad already conjures up familiar images.

  2. Jeffsexton says:

    Artur,

    It’s possible that there is an overall, generalized rising tide of name recognition around Square that is altering readers’ reactions to the ads, but since the ads ran during the same time-frame it can’t be said to automatically be in favor of the challenger. Also, both ads seem to make explicit reference to the brand name more or less equally.

    So what’s really at play here are the subtle differences that Seajay113 baked into his ad aimed at boosting clarity.

    - Jeff