9 Essential Marketing Tips from the Father of Advertising

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Ogilvy on Advertising was one of the first books I had on my reading list back when I created my system for reading more. My only regret after finally reading it is having delayed for a year and a half.

Drawing from 40 years of experience, David Ogilvy shows everything he learned from creating some of the most successful advertising campaigns to date (some of which are still running today).

From using research instead of rules to reminding yourself exactly what you’re paid to do, Ogilvy provides a blunt outlook of how to improve as a marketer and copywriter.

When I got a margarine account, I was under the impression that margarine was made from coal. Ten days reading the literature taught me otherwise.” – David Ogilvy, Ogilvy on Advertising, p.11

At times his writing is standoffish and hostile, and he never claims to be infallible, but many of the marketing tips he championed 24 years ago still hold true today. Unfortunately, finding those nine golden tips in 220+ pages of case studies and niche information on how advertising agencies work is a bit of a nightmare.

That’s why I’ve done it for you. Time is money, after all, and the quicker you learn these marketing tips, the sooner you can succeed in selling.

marketing tips david ogilvy

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Branding Case Study: How Ogilvy Turned Speculation into Reality through Ads

Branding Case Study

“Hey, this soap is making my skin dry. Do you know any soaps that don’t?”, I asked my wife while reading Ogilvy on Advertising.

“Dove, I think”, she replied.

Score!

See, the thing is I’d just read this line:

“I could have positioned Dove as a detergent bar for men with dirty hands, but chose instead to position it as a toilet bar for women with dry skin. This is still working 25 years later.”

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The success of this Dove ad is widely celebrated, but there’s another interesting branding case study that’s never been looked into before.

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