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Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This by Edward Boches, Luke Sullivan

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Figure depicting an ad for IKEA where to a small Christmas tree a Big Christmas ball is attached. The headline of this ad reads, “Early Christmas Sale Starts 19 October.”

Figure 6.1 Nothing to add here. Nothing to take away. It's perfect.

6The Virtues of SimplicityOr, Why It's Hard to Pound in a Nail Sideways

If you take away one thing from this book, let it be the advice in this section. Simpler is almost always better.

Maurice Saatchi, of London's M&C Saatchi, on simplicity: “Simplicity is all. Simple logic, simple arguments, simple visual images. If you can't reduce your argument to a few crisp words and phrases, there's something wrong with your argument.”

Make Sure the Fuse on Your Idea Isn't Too Short or Too Long

Here's the thing: The customer has to get your ad instantly, or close to instantly. I sometimes refer to this as the Speed of the Get. For my money, a quick-get is the first and the most important thing an idea needs to have. A quick-get matters more than even the creativity of the piece. Heresy, I know, but it's the truth.

On the other hand, you don't want your idea to be too quick of a get. If your idea doesn't have enough substance to it, it may well be an instant read but will likely have little effect on the viewer. Sort of like a STOP sign; obviously an instant read but not likely something I'm gonna post on my Facebook. But few students err on the too-fast end of the continuum; most ideas that fail are too slow.

In an effort to create an intriguing idea that requires a little bit of the viewer—which overall is a good thing—students ...

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