The “I Should Hope So” Question

I was listening once to a Jeffrey Hedquist teleseminar.  I really like Hedquist because he’s a bit honest when it comes to advertising.  He’s one of those guys (to me) that said it ‘how it is.’  A bit of a Gordon Ramsay type, with a little more tact.  He primarily focus’ on radio but I don’t see a reason why it shouldn’t apply any type of advertising.

During the teleseminar I ‘par-took’ in, he talked about some things you should never include in a (radio) advertisement.  One of the main things I took out of the seminar was a part when he talked about the “I should hope so” statements he saw so often in advertisements.

What Hedquist meant was that if you’re writing advertising copy (for print or radio) and you write a sentence that could easily be answered by the question “I should hope so…” then it probably shouldn’t be in your ad!

I hope I don’t have to explain it too much but if you’re going to state something obvious in your ad then it probably should be in there.  Why?

Com’on…you’re killing me.  It shouldn’t be in there because you’re wasting prime real estate in your ad.  We’ll take radio as an example.  Let’s say your buying a :60 radio advertisement for, let’s say, $60 (we’ll keep the numbers simple.)  A typical sentence of radio advertisement will take about 5 seconds, or about 8% of a commercial.  So, if you were too look at the cost of 8% of a commercial than that comes out to about $6.00.  So, in essence, you’ve wasted $6.00 on an obvious statement in your advertisement.  That’s a huge waste of money.  HUGE!!!

If you’re advertising medium is a print ad then you should (technically) look at the square inches (or centimeters or pixels) you’re using to with an obvious statement and divide that by the cost of the whole ad!  Chances are you’re still wasting a pretty penny.

So what should you do?  Regardless of what your advertising medium is, or how much you pay for it, you should analyse it!  Look at each line (or inch) of your advertisement and see if there’s any statements, words or pictures that you could answer with “I should hope so.”  If that statement is in there…take it out!!! Immediately.  There’s no point in it!  Take that space or time to say something worth your money!


Hi, I'm a marketing guy, who knows how to make websites. Every so often I see or think of things, that will be of value to others. It's either that or I just need to 'rage-vent.'

tommy[at]iheartblank[dot]net

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