Golden Words

©Jeanne E Webster

What a gold mine the advertising field is for writers!  Conjure up the wildest configurations in words and sell a product.  It’s all about “Does it enhance the product; does it make it POP?”  Take for example, some of the recent coupon ads I found in the Sunday paper:

A cosmetic product that Promises to make you “Look up to 10 years younger instantly!*” Tagged with an asterisk which reveals, “*Based on the individual perception of a panel of women using “(product name).”   I must ask:  who were these women, how old were they, and were they made younger instantly?  And for how long?   As a senior woman, I am concerned the product may harm an already delicate condition!

A pregnancy test kit that declares in bold text at the top of the ad:  “ACCURATE as a DOCTOR’S test.*”   I located the asterisk declaration and read that the test is, “*99% accurate at detecting typical pregnancy hormone levels.  Note that hormone levels may vary.”    Ok.  In plain English it tells me that if my hormone levels are typical, the test is 99% accurate.  Where do I go to have my hormone levels checked for typicality?!

Want a reason to celebrate?!  This ad gives you reason to do just that!  It declares, “3 Weeks ‘til Summer!  That’s reason enough to celebrate with (product name) BRATS!”  This is one ad that doesn’t need to shout too loudly; I love ____VILLE BRATS.  I don’t even have to wait for summertime.  Anytime, all year-long.  Oh, yeah!

Here’s a product for you with an added twist—an asterisk along with a dagger.  This product will “Help Relieve Your Joints, Improve Mobility & Flexibility!*” Ok so far.  It is 100% Natural and Clinically Proven.   Inserted for added effect are two testimonials by product users forswearing its effectiveness.    Sounds interesting.  Let’s get out the magnifying glasses and read the fine print.  First is the asterisk:  *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Ok.  So what do we take it for, if it does not treat or cure our joint problems?
Maybe the next footnote will tell us.  The dagger mark reveals:   Ϯ Testimonial subjects have been compensated with a nominal product discount.  Testimonial results are generally representative of the outcome in the clinical studies in the people that benefitted from the specialized Danish rose hips in (product name).  One subject said she felt so good since taking this product.  The other subject said she has more motion now with practically no discomfort.    It appears that the active ingredient is rose hips among filler stuff.  I don’t think I want to pay for rose hips at this price.

The last coupon advertisement is simply a product that “Wakes up your eggs with GLORIOUS (product name)!”  I have eaten this product and it is good.  Glorious, I don’t know.  Wake up your eggs, how?  Anyway, try it or if you’re already a user, enjoy.


Great writing to you and keep digging up those golden eggs!

One comment on “Golden Words

  1. Yup, lots of surprises in small print!

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