How to be a copywriter

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

September update

This month:

Noah returns
What's it all about, Aldi?
(End-of-month drinks)

Noah returns
The Collective are delighted to welcome Noah Ykealo back to the office now that Casper has returned to Finland to complete his studies.
Noah will be taking over where Casper left off, looking after intake of new freelancers and assisting Sandra and Wilma with handling jobs. You can contact Noah by email

For those who haven't already discovered it, is a fabulous place to keep up with trends and associated marketing ideas from around the world. It's a useful source of inspiration to keep your creative ideas on the ball.

What's it all about Aldi?

This is the theme for this month's drinks, due to take place on Friday 26th September.

Date: Friday 26th September 2008
Place: The Jack Stafford Collection (below The Collective)
Vijzelstraat 67, Amsterdam
Time: 18:00 - 21:00

*This is a reference to the theme tune for the 1960s film Alfie, starring Michael Caine.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

A Copy, a Client, his Product and its Naming

The following article was kindly supplied by Collective Copywriter Daniela Ferrando.

Ok, the title of this post sounds kind of next Peter Greenaway’s movie. But I’ll be less symbolic.
As a copywriter – I am Italian and mainly work in my native language, plus I transcreate from English – when I’m asked to produce product naming proposals, I love it.

You know the steps: meeting/calling/skyping (for a briefing), brainstorming, creating, comparing, researching, writing, shortlisting, checking domain/patent availability, and… presenting to the client? Presenting what?

A detailed document commenting every proposal for the client to check it and rationally choose, feeling super-supported and advised?

A maieutic document, i.e. a pertinent list of proposals with minimal comment, e.g. just some etymology, for the client to enjoy and to share the pleasure of rediscovering his own product?
A bare list for the client to make his marketing decision without feeling influenced?

I happened to prepare last week a very commented and detailed set of product naming proposals.
I did so because the client wasn’t Italian, but wanted an Italian professional to work on his product.
I thought I had to make him sure about the meaning, the tone, the scope, the etymology, the nature of my proposals, and maybe also about my favourite names – which I normally hide in a note, preferably a final, fine printed note.
This is my usual approach.
Well, it was too much to him.
When I adjusted my proposals after a first feedback, I cut most of the comments away and just grouped my naming proposals by concept. It worked.
By the way, he told me he had already received a bare list for a parallele part of his product naming project from another copywriter. A bare list to enjoy.

Once more, I learnt how many modulations exist under a simple and usual request for a copywriter.
What do YOU produce and present when you work on product naming?

Daniela Ferrando - Milan, Italy