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If it doesn't sell, it isn't creative. ...
by David Ogilvy

If it doesn't sell, it isn't creative.
- David Ogilvy

The advertisers who believe in the selling power of
jingles have never had to sell anything.
- David Ogilvy

Our business is infested with idiots who try to impress
by using pretentious jargon.
- David Ogilvy

Leaders grasp nettles.
- David Ogilvy

 

The consumer isn't a moron; she is your wife.
- David Ogilvy

There are very few men of genius in advertising agencies.
But we need all we can find.
Almost without exception they are disagreeable.
Don't destroy them.
They lay golden eggs.
- David Ogilvy

Ninety-nine percent of advertising doesn't sell much of anything.
- David Ogilvy

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Political advertising ought to be stopped.
It's the only really dishonest kind of advertising that's left.
It's totally dishonest.
- David Ogilvy

It is flagrantly dishonest for an advertising agent
to urge consumers to buy a product which he would not
allow his own wife to buy.
- David Ogilvy

Advertising reflects the mores of society,
but it does not influence them.
- David Ogilvy

You now have to decide what 'image' you want for your brand.
Image means personality.
Products, like people, have personalities,
and they can make or break them in the market place.
- David Ogilvy

What you say in advertising is more important than how you say it.
- David Ogilvy

First, make yourself a reputation for being a creative genius.
Second, surround yourself with partners who are better than you are.
Third, leave them to go get on with it.
- David Ogilvy

Much of the messy advertising you see on television
today is the product of committees.
Committees can criticize advertisements,
but they should never be allowed to create them.
- David Ogilvy

The headline is the 'ticket on the meat.'
Use it to flag down readers who are prospects for the
kind of product you are advertising.
- David Ogilvy

The pursuit of excellence is less profitable than the pursuit of bigness,
but it can be more satisfying.
- David Ogilvy

Never write an advertisement which you wouldn't want your family to read.
You wouldn't tell lies to your own wife.
Don't tell them to mine.
- David Ogilvy

Advertising is only evil when it advertises evil things.
- David Ogilvy

There is no need for advertisements to look like advertisements.
If you make them look like editorial pages,
you will attract about 50 per cent more readers.
- David Ogilvy

The more informative your advertising,
the more persuasive it will be.
- David Ogilvy

The best ideas come as jokes.
Make your thinking as funny as possible.
- David Ogilvy

Many people - and I think I am one of them -
are more productive when they've had a little to drink.
I find if I drink two or three brandies,
I'm far better able to write.
- David Ogilvy

A good advertisement is one which sells the product
without drawing attention to itself.
- David Ogilvy

I do not regard advertising as entertainment or an art form,
but as a medium of information.
- David Ogilvy

Good copy can't be written with tongue in cheek,
written just for a living.
You've got to believe in the product.
- David Ogilvy

It strikes me as bad manners for a magazine to accept
one of my advertisements and then attack it editorially -
like inviting a man to dinner then spitting in his eye.
- David Ogilvy

Like a midwife, I make my living bringing new babies into the world,
except that mine are new advertising campaigns.
- David Ogilvy

What really decides consumers to buy or not to buy
is the content of your advertising,
not its form.
- David Ogilvy

Don't bunt.
Aim out of the ball park.
Aim for the company of immortals.
- David Ogilvy

Hire people who are better than you are,
then leave them to get on with it.
Look for people who will aim for the remarkable,
who will not settle for the routine.
- David Ogilvy

Does advertising corrupt editors? Yes it does,
but fewer editors than you may suppose...
the vast majority of editors are incorruptible.
- David Ogilvy

Every advertisement should be thought of as a contribution
to the complex symbol which is the brand image.
- David Ogilvy

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.
- David Ogilvy

Advertising people who ignore research are as dangerous
as generals who ignore decodes of enemy signals.
- David Ogilvy

The secret of long life is double careers.
One to about age sixty, then another for the next thirty years.
- David Ogilvy

Some manufacturers illustrate their advertisements with abstract paintings.
I would only do this if I wished to conceal from the
reader what I was advertising.
- David Ogilvy

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

Develop your eccentricities while you are young.
That way, when you get old, people won't think you're going gaga.
- David Ogilvy

Many manufacturers secretly question whether advertising
really sells their product,
but are vaguely afraid that their competitors might
steal a march on them if they stopped.
- David Ogilvy

The most important word in the vocabulary of advertising is TEST.
If you pretest your product with consumers,
and pretest your advertising, you will do well in the marketplace.
- David Ogilvy

Never stop testing, and your advertising will never stop improving.
- David Ogilvy

I notice increasing reluctance on the part of marketing
executives to use judgment;
they are coming to rely too much on research,
and they use it as a drunkard uses a lamp post for support,
rather than for illumination.
- David Ogilvy

I did not feel 'evil' when I wrote advertisements for Puerto Rico.
They helped attract industry and tourists to a country
which had been living on the edge of starvation for 400 years.
- David Ogilvy

Can advertising foist an inferior product on the consumer?
Bitter experience has taught me that it cannot.
On those rare occasions when I have advertised products
which consumer tests have found inferior to other products in the same field,
the results have been disastrous.
- David Ogilvy

If each of us hires people who are smaller than we are,
we shall become a company of dwarfs.
But if each of us hires people who are bigger than we are,
we shall become a company of giants.
- David Ogilvy

Remove advertising, disable a person or firm from proclaiming
its wares and their merits,
and the whole of society and of the economy is transformed.
The enemies of advertising are the enemies of freedom.
- David Ogilvy

If you ever have the good fortune to create a great advertising campaign,
you will soon see another agency steal it.
This is irritating, but don't let it worry you;
nobody has ever built a brand by imitating somebody else's advertising.
- David Ogilvy

The relationship between a manufacturer and his advertising
agency is almost as intimate as the relationship between
a patient and his doctor.
Make sure that you can life happily with your prospective
client before you accept his account.
- David Ogilvy

Advertising is a business of words, but advertising
agencies are infested with men and women who cannot write.
They cannot write advertisements, and they cannot write plans.
They are helpless as deaf mutes on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera.
- David Ogilvy

It takes a big idea to attract the attention of consumers
and get them to buy your product.
Unless your advertising contains a big idea,
it will pass like a ship in the night.
I doubt if more than one campaign in a hundred contains a big idea.
- David Ogilvy

I don't know the rules of grammar...
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.
We try to write in the vernacular.
- David Ogilvy

I avoid clients for whom advertising is only a marginal
factor in their marketing mix.
They have an awkward tendency to raid their advertising
appropriations whenever they need cash for other purposes.
- David Ogilvy

I have a theory that the best ads come from personal experience.
Some of the good ones I have done have really come
out of the real experience of my life,
and somehow this has come over as true and valid and persuasive.
- David Ogilvy

Courage doesn't always roar.
Sometimes courage is the quiet voice
at the end of the day, saying,
"I will try again tomorrow."
- Mary Anne Radmacher

When a person doesn't have gratitude,
something is missing in his or her humanity.
A person can almost be defined by
his or her attitude toward gratitude.
- Elie Wiesel

If you love something, set it free;
if it comes back it's yours,
if it doesn't, it never was.
- Richard Bach

Anyone who doesn't take truth seriously in small matters
cannot be trusted in large ones either.
- Albert Einstein

Success doesn't come to you, you go to it.
- Marva Collins

People often say that motivation doesn't last.
Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.
- Zig Ziglar

Happiness doesn't depend on any external conditions,
it is governed by our mental attitude.
- Dale Carnegie

God doesn't require us to succeed;
He only requires that you try.
- Mother Teresa

Letting go doesn't mean giving up...
it means moving on.
- Anonymous

It is amazing how much you can accomplish
when it doesn't matter who gets the credit.
- Anonymous

Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect.
It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections.
- Anonymous

If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door.
- Milton Berle

Never allow a person to tell you NO
who doesn't have the power to say YES.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

What doesn't kill me, makes me stronger.
- Friedrich Nietzsche

We tend to forget that happiness doesn't
come as a result of getting something we don't have,
but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.
- Frederick Koenig

Courage is not always about action,
and it doesn't always involve danger,
but courage is always doing what is right.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Prayer doesn't change God, but changes him who prays
- Soren Kierkegaard

The tragedy of life doesn't lie in not reaching your goal.
The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach.
- Benjamin E. Mays


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