Southwick Online

Author: Christian Gutierrez

Humor in Advertising

Example of a Direct Mail Campaign for Whisky

Although writing humor is difficult, if accomplished, it can evoke an emotional response – the goal of all advertising.

Humorous advertising is the most difficult to create successfully. In literature too, humor is known as the most difficult genre to master. This is because of its subjective nature. What is funny to one person may not be funny to another. But when the right balance is found, humor strikes a resonant chord in the human heart and this makes it memorable. It evokes the emotional response to all forms of advertising aim for.

The direct mail campaign for McDowell’s just launched whiskey – Sir Bedivere’s Cask made recipients laugh and elicited enthusiastic responses, sometimes in broken English!

An eminent theatre personality wrote in, requesting the client to congratulate the copywriter. Even those who hadn’t heard about King Arthur and his knights had found the mailers interesting. And yet the account team had been worried about the target audience lack of knowledge regarding Sir Bedivere who was one of King Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table.

The writer, however, was convinced that advertising can also serve to educate and inform.

The cover letter told the recipients that the president of the company had come across some interesting ancient manuscripts while hunting for a befitting name for his new brand of whiskey: a couple of letters from Sir Bedivere to Lancelot. The p.s. (postscript) in the letter explained the phrase Champion of the Whistle‘ as the person who could hold out longest in a drinking bout.

A Humorous Sales Letter for a Whisky

“Dear Lancelot, what ho!

What a fitting name you have, old friend! You lance a lot, making many a brave knight bite the dust. And you also drink a lot.

Which reminds me of my wine cask. When you return from your Quest

for the Holy Grail, be my guest.

Many a time you have come to the end of my wine cask only to find more wine. You called it The Cornucopia.

I’m writing to you because I wish to apologize for waking you up in the odd hours of the night to save a damsel in distress. You see, for lack of water, I had to dowse you with my wine. And I wouldn’t call it a waste. But old friend, Lancelot, I meant you no ill will. So let’s have The Champion of the Whistle bout again and I’ll know you have forgiven me.

I end here,

Your friend, Bedivere.

P.S: I have this strange feeling that I’m going to make history!”

Second Direct Mailer for Sir Bedivere’s Cask

“What ho, Lancelot!

So you won The Champion of the Whistle again. My gauntlet off to you!

But the worst has happened, old friend! The treacherous Morgan Le Fay gave our beloved King Arthur a magic draught to drink and he had no sooner drunk it than his eyes were opened to the intrigue between you and his lady, Guinevere! Although I do not think the King is vindictive, I can see the jealousy in his eyes.

We must do something quickly to dull the pain, soften the anger. Our poor King, he loves both Queen Guinevere and you so!

I have a solution. Merlin tells me there is such a drink called a `Cocktail.’ It’s all mixed up. He says a Toltec (Aztec) noble discovered it and sent it to his king by the hand of his daughter, Xochitl. Thus the word, `Cocktail.’

Well, our great Wizard, Merlin, has kindly given me the secret cocktail recipe. He says it mellows hearts and strengthens the bonds of friendship. I’m going to call this drink Merlin O in his honor.

So why not gift a cask of Merlin O to King Arthur? He needs it.

Your old friend, Bedivere.”

Advertising Appeals to Desires and Emotions

According to the experts, all forms of advertising appeal to one of the following:

  • To make more money
  • To save money
  • Save time
  • Avoid effort
  • Gain knowledge
  • Avoid loss
  • Be more successful
  • To find love and keep it
  • To be sexy and beautiful
  • To live more comfortably
  • Fear – to be prepared for the worst
  • Exclusivity – to be the first
  • Profit, wealth/prosperity
  • Greed
  • Sex
  • Safety
  • Guilt
  • Pleasure
  • Envy
  • Education
  • Pride/ego/vanity

Some of the most well-known ads and commercials are humorous in nature. It is a copywriter’s challenge to write a piece that is memorable, but whether humor is acceptable or not depends on the image of the brand.

How to Advertise on a Minimum Budget

This article offers advice to freelancers and small businesses on inexpensive advertising.

As fundamental as it sounds – when it comes to low budget marketing, the more you do yourself, the better. If you are a new and upcoming business/freelancer with limited funds to spare, you will have to forget the flashy banners and the catchy TV and radio advertisements. But do not worry, there is an ocean of opportunities out there that you can explore in order to draw attention to your new enterprise. So where to start?

You Will Need a Website, Business Cards, and a Reliable Internet Connection

A professionally designed website can cost a small fortune and often starting out freelancers and small businesses rely on social networking instead. As much as this can prove helpful, having a website will not only demonstrate to your potential clients that you are serious about your work, but it will also advertise what you do. The good news is: you can bring the cost to a minimum by designing the website yourself.

You can also create your own business cards and print them at the local printers or if it seems like a lot of work, you can subcontract this task to a competitively priced freelancer.

Leaving Your Footprints All Over the Web

When money is no object you would simply pay various organizations to be listed on their pages, but when it comes to cost-effectiveness, the longer way is the answer. Adding your company name and details to as many free directories as possible will increase your visibility and will help generate traffic to your website. And when your business starts earning money, you can always upgrade your listing.

Facebook is the place to be

By all means, feel free to loathe it, if you do but don’t underestimate its power! Facebook’s community exceeds four hundred million users…Now that is a great audience. Depending on the nature of your business, you might want to create a business page, a group or simply a private account. Write as much as possible about your company, but make sure the description is professional and interesting. And don’t stop there. Join other sites such as Twitter and social networking sites for professionals like LinkedIn or pro spotlight.

Take a deep breath and start cold calling

Build your own databases of contacts or better – if you can spare the pennies – purchase some. Send emails to your potential clients and follow them up with phone calls. Make sure you have a pitch prepared beforehand and remember that you may have to make hundreds of calls to generate business, so don’t lose faith and keep calling, it’s a numbers game. And to reduce your phone bill, try using Skype.

Link exchange, word of mouth and shop windows

Tell the world what you are up to. The word of mouth remains a very effective marketing tool. Talk to your neighbors, work colleagues and friends. Ask for referrals.

Exchanging links is always a good idea, as it doesn’t cost you money and your business is present on other advertising platforms. However, my advice is to have a page on your site entitled Links, so that your main pages remain tidy and simple for website visitors.

Produce a batch of small flyers and put them in the local shop windows, post offices and service providers, i.e., hairdressers. They may charge you a small fee for the pleasure – usually around one to two pounds per week, so it shouldn’t break the bank.

The sky is the limit when it comes to advertising and the more creative you are the better results you stand to achieve. Keep your eyes open and allow your ingenuity to make yours a success story. Good luck!

PROMOTIONAL COMPANIES

The Best Promotional Products Selection Anywhere

For the past 30 years, we have been providing local, regional, and national businesses and organizations with high quality, branded, promotional merchandise. From the most modern high-tech gadgets to environmentally friendly renditions of classic items, we’ve got you covered!

Browse our inventory of promotional items online, or call to speak with one of our marketing specialists. Our experienced staff will help you find the best-branded merchandise for your company in a one-on-one, friendly meeting. It’s just one of the reasons why Southwick Speciality Advertising is one of the top promotional companies in the country.

Why Southwick Specialty Advertising?

Since we began our business in January of 1983, we have satisfied thousands of customers across around the world. We live by our company motto, “Our bright ideas make you look brilliant!” and it shows in everything that we do. From top quality branded merchandise from brands like Nike, Callaway, and Columbia Sportswear to our friendly, professional customer service, we are truly a ‘one stop shop’ for all of your promotional needs.

Unlike many other promotional companies, we are available for one-on-one meetings to help you plan your corporate apparel programs or find the best promotional item for an upcoming event. We will help you plan your promotional materials from beginning to end. Of course, if you would like to just order online, then you can do that too.

Ordering Online

Orders can be processed directly through our secure website. Browse our inventory of promotional products online, and when you find what you are looking for you will be able to upload your logo or custom artwork. We will then securely process your credit card and let you know when to expect your products.

There is no project that is too big or too small. We have experience with orders of all sizes, and promise that you will not only like your promotional products, but you will also enjoy the friendly experience of working with us.

Promotional Apparel Ideas

Why is branded promotional apparel so popular among businesses and organizations? One of the main reasons is because it is one of the easiest ways for company employees and clients to advertise the company. By providing quality promotional apparel to employees and clients, they are likely to wear it even when they are not in the office, extending your brand’s reach into their social circles.

Promotional Apparel isn’t What it Used to be
There was a day when promotional apparel was less than desirable to wear. The quality of apparel was much lower than it is today, and the designs were all too often boring or unfashionable. Today we are able to offer promotional apparel from top brands like Nike, Carhartt, Cutter & Buck, and Columbia Sportswear. The apparel is not only fashionably branded with your company or organization’s mark, but it is also comfortable.

We stand behind all of the promotional apparel that we sell, and firmly believe that only high-quality apparel should be branded for marketing purposes. After all, if the promotional apparel is not frequently worn, then there isn’t much of a point in producing it, right?

Corporate Apparel Programs
Let one of our marketing specialists partner with you to create a memorable, high-impact corporate apparel program. Whether you are looking to equip your sales team with branded shirts for an upcoming trade show, or you are looking for branded golf polos for an upcoming charity golf tournament, Southwick has got you covered. We will meet with you in a one-on-one meeting to determine the best apparel for your needs and your budget, and promise that you will be satisfied with the outcome.

Why do you want to start your own business?

Why do you want to start your own business?

We sometimes seem to be conditioned to think that the path to life nirvana is to start our own business. If we could all just be our own bosses then everything would be alright. Immediately, one would probably think of a quote where someone said that if they spoke to other people the way they speak to themselves then they’d get arrested. This problem also arises when we are our own bosses – if we treated our employees the way we treat ourselves people wouldn’t work for us and we’d end up in court. So why would we want to start our own business and do this to ourselves?

So, to return to the original question, why do you want to start your own business? If you’re reading this post then you must be thinking about it, so what’s your motivation?

I hate my job

Reasons to start a small business include:Why do you want to start your own business? - work stress

People often quit their jobs and start a business on their own because they hated their jobs. This could be compounded by the fact that they share an office with co workers who have serious personality problems or a boss who had an attitude. Maybe not a bad decision in either case then. Other than the personality thing, this is quite a bad reason to start your own business, especially if you put as little thought into it as I did. If you just want to get out and do not really have much of a plan for what you would do once you escaped.  Years later, you would probably appreciate the experience it will give you but at the time it would be pretty uncomfortable.

I want to be my own boss

If you have a crappy boss, you might be considering starting your own business. Many self-employed people are working for themselves mainly because they are incapable of working for anyone else. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, so if you are one of these people it may go well or it may go badly. Remember, if you run your own business, there are so many things you need to do. You have to think of promotional strategies to bring potential clients to your doorstep although you can certainly hire a marketing agency to help you gain more customers.

I want to be rich

Why do you want to start your own business? - work stress - successful entrepreneur

Don’t we all! There’s no doubt that having your own business is one of the best ways to become rich and the list of self-made millionaires and billionaires proves this. Donald Trump, Larry Ellison, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, Alan Sugar, Warren Buffett, Felix Dennis, Carlos Slim, Lakshmi Mittal and on, and on, and on. So yes, this is a pretty good reason.

I can do so much more than I’m doing now

This is something a lot of people can relate to. Working in a job and being frustrated that there is so much more we could do but we are not given the opportunity. Having our own business would let us stretch ourselves to do all these things. This is a great reason to start a business, to enable us to develop ourselves in so many ways that a constraining job doesn’t allow. And while you’re at it, utilize the expertise of a full-service SEO team so you can focus on growing your business.

Have you seen the idiots that work for themselves?

Well, have you? You would be astonished at how stupid a lot of seemingly successful business people are when you meet them. This is something that could make us believe that, “if they can do it, then so can I”. But are we missing something? We have to be careful in the way we just people’s capabilities. Maybe these people have the ability to work longer hours than us, or tolerate rejection better than us, or to keep going when it all seems hopeless in a way that we never could. So, exercise caution here.

It seems to be the thing to do and I just think I should

This is maybe about envy and seeing what other people have. Over the years, you may have read about all sorts of people starting their own businesses and it probably made you feel like there was something wrong with you or if you didn’t (or maybe couldn’t) do it too. This one can be a bit of a trap that we might fall into and was certainly a part of people leaving their perfectly good jobs with the vague aim of starting my own business. Just because other people are doing it, and seem to be doing it successfully, doesn’t mean we should all drop everything and do it too, and right now.

So if you do want to start your own business, why do you want to do that?

Choosing a Career in Optometry

What do optometrists do?

Optometrists are medical professionals who deal with problems relating to eye sights, mostly by prescribing corrective spectacles, lenses or medicines. Optometrists are generally confused with ophthalmologists. Although both of these specialized professions deal with eye care, optometrists have to acquire their D.O. (Doctor of Optometry) degrees before they start practicing. Ophthalmologists, on the other hand, are M.D. (Doctor of Medicine) and can also operate on the eye.

Optometrists recommend the right eyewear to correct vision problems
How to become an optometrist:

For those who have been wondering about how to become an optometrist, below are a few steps that briefly define the process:

  1. Choosing the right subjects in high school and college: In order to apply to a D.O. program in the future, high school students are often recommended selecting biology, physics, math, and chemistry as their preparatory courses for the degree ahead of them. Once out of high school, they need to get enrolled in a college pre-optometric course. Majority of the colleges require students to gain credits in all the subjects mentioned above, with English as an additional course.

The good news is that not every D.O. program lays down the prerequisite that a student must have passed out from college before they enroll for further studies. However, students must have completed at least 75 percent of their four-year degree program before enrolment into higher studies. Students are required to get their bachelor’s degree, nonetheless, before they are awarded their D.O. degree.

  1. Graduating from a certified and credible optometry college: Before getting into an optometry school, students applying for the program have to appear for an admission test. Many students start appearing for their admission tests right from their second or third year in college, which gives them the opportunity to retake the test if they are unsuccessful at first. In optometry schools, a four-year degree program is offered that encompass courses related to general health and vision. The training is imparted both in academic and practical terms needed to identify which is the right contact lens is the ‘right one’ for the patient from the long line of options from the Acuvue brand. Compulsory courses include pharmacology, optics, systematic diseases, and biochemistry.
  2. Keeping the door open for residency as part of post-graduation: With residency programs, optometrists get a chance to concentrate more in the area of their interest, which includes family health, vision remedy, geriatric or pediatric optometry and treatment of optical problems. Specializations can also be done in optical and refractive surgeries, which is good news for people studying optometry in America states that allow them to carry out small-scale eye operations, aside from the license to recommend daily wear lenses or extended wear ones.A career in optometry can be rewarding
  3. Passing the licensing exam: A career in optometry does not take off immediately after a person finishes the D.O. course since the degree holders are required to pass a licensing exam to get approval as optometry practitioners. People who have been trying to find more about how to become an optometrist should remember that it is only after clearing the licensing exam that individuals become eligible to practice as optometrists in different health facilities. Licensing also needs to be renewed every one to three years, depending upon the state requirement. Attaining the license becomes a little easier when people keep themselves in practice by enrolling themselves for higher degree programs even after they start practicing.

Individuals who want to take up the job of research or teaching optometrists, simultaneously with their work as practicing optometrists, need a master’s or Ph.D. (doctorate) in a specialized field of optometry like neurophysiology and optical science.

Make a Fashion Statement with Prescription Glasses

People often wear contacts so that the prescription glasses do not hide their faces. Glasses, however, are being made by top of the line designers and companies that enable people not to be afraid of their bifocals. There are many ways to turn prescription glasses into a fashion statement.

Solid Colors

Wearing prescription glasses that have a solid color is a great way to blend your glasses into almost any outfit you want. When picking out a color for your glasses try and pick colors such as dark red, black, and light or dark brown. These colors are acceptable to wear in any job setting whether you’re an at-home writer or a secretary at a law firm. If you want to wear brighter colors such as orange or light blue you may want to have two pairs of glasses; one pair for work and one pair for wearing when you’re out and about.

Match Your Hair and Skin

Certain colors look better with certain hair and skin tones. You don’t want your eyeglasses to fade into your face or take away from the natural beauty of your face either. People who have what is considered a cool skin tone have light eyes, light hair and a light skin tone. With a pale skin tone, you want your glasses to highlight your face, not outshine it. For people with a cool skin tone is best to wear rose, black or blue-grey glasses. For people who have a “warm” skin tone, it is best for them to wear the colors red, copper, gold or peach. Matching color with your skin or hair tone will ensure that glasses highlight your face instead of making it look garish. It is always up to you what color you wear but sticking to a guideline can help you find a color that works best for you.
Fashion with Prescription Glasses

Frames for the Shape of Your Face

Wearing a certain eyeglass frame shape can change your face in a few different ways. If you have sharp features square frames will look best on you. Square frames will enable you to narrow some of your sharp features such as a strong forehead. If your face is more heart-shaped, you should wear glasses with no bottom rim. Having no rim to your eyeglasses will balance your jaw with your cheeks. Round faces should wear thinner rectangular glasses. These eyeglasses thin your face and give you a very sophisticated look. If you have an oval face, you are really in luck! Oval shaped faces can wear almost any shape of the frame and still look good. The only suggestion for someone with an oval face is to wear a wider frame.

Shopping for Frames

Shopping for fashionable eyeglass frames is really easy. You can buy frames from sites like amazon.com. Even easier, the next time you go to your ophthalmologist, he may sell glasses as well. A lot of ophthalmologists have dozens of name brand and fashionable glasses for a reasonable price to sell. The most important thing when shopping for glasses is to remember to pick a pair of glasses that express you and your style; when you do that effectively you will look great!

A Brief Guide to Buying Prescription Contact Lenses

It is very interesting to note that although the concept of contact lenses was actually thought of in 1508 by Leonardo da Vinci, it only came into existence in the1970s, at least those that could be worn comfortably. However, we have come a long way from the traditional lenses. Today, contact lenses are worn for both utility as well as fashion, especially given the fact that lens manufacturers have created wonderful lenses that create fashion statements.

Sanitized and dry fingers are crucial to attaching contact lenses

Prescription contact lenses are those that are prescribed by eyecare practitioners, usually to correct vision-related problems in an individual. These lenses are different from lenses that do not help to correct any vision or Plano lenses, which are nonprescription lenses. It is pertinent to note that post-2004, it has become very difficult for people to obtain contact lenses without a prescription in the US. Still, most online shops are one-stop havens where you can buy both prescription and nonprescription contact lenses.

Possible Contact Lens Problems

Since contact lenses are in direct contact with your eyes and any problem that you have while using them could affect your eyes, physically as well as in terms of your eyesight, it’s suggested to buy them after being prescribed by your eye doctor. Common problems caused by wrong contact lenses include inflammation, discomfort, abrasion, or swelling. In some cases, it could also cause permanent damage to the tissues of the eye. Therefore, it is very important that you contact your eye care practitioner for prescribing contact lens, even if you require it for making a fashion statement and do not really require any vision correction.

Prescription for contact lenses is different from the prescription given for eyeglasses as it contains more information, which is not really required for glasses. While prescriptions for both glasses as well as contact lenses contains information regarding the sphere, axis, and cylinder of the lens, the prescription for contact lenses also contains information regarding the base curve and diameter along with the brand that will suit your needs. This is because the contact lens has to fit over your eye properly. Else, it could lead to a temporary loss of vision or other eye-related problems.

Expiry Dates

It is essential to note that any prescription for contact lenses has a limitation or validity period, usually 1-2 years, after which you have to get a fresh prescription. This is because most vision-related problems undergo changes over a period of time. While you can never get rid of such problems completely, they might increase or decrease in intensity and it is absolutely essential that you keep track of such changes and accordingly change the power of your lenses. Under these circumstances, it is better if there is a validity date for your prescription as you will then be regular with your eye checkup if only to renew your prescription.

Prescription contact lenses are available for several leading brands. It is important to buy only those brands suggested by your eye care practitioner as the base curve of one brand is different from the other. In other words, for the final fit in your eye that’s comfortable, it’s better to buy prescription contact lenses.

Save Money While Shopping

Shopping is inevitable for everyone of us and can be a burden when overspending habits – consciously or not – happen. There are several ways of cutting down on additional costs when shopping. Here are a few tips to help you save money and relieve you from financial stress.

Plan Your Trips and Stick to a Budget

Know how many times you hit the shops within a month and set a routine as to what you purchase with each trip. You should also know how much you spend on these goods. So the next time you are at the shops, jot down prices to use to prepare your next prudent budget.

You may want to shop for non-perishable (eg, household cleaning agents, toiletries, stationery) items once a month and perishable (vegetables, meats, cold beverages) items once a week. With your established routine, set a budget with the cash you already have (for the month) and separate them into envelopes. Label your envelopes and use them as you go for your trips. This will help you stick to your budget.

Sticking to a shopping list will save you money

Shop with a Shopping List

Take a quick inventory check around the house and list down your shopping list before you leave the house. Stick to the list and cross off the items that are in your trolley as you go along. This will curb you from wandering around aimlessly and picking up goods that you do not need.

Use Discounts and Coupons

Look out for good buys through discounts and coupons of the things that you do need. You may want to consider buying in bulk if prices are low. This will save you money in the future.

Compare Prices and Take a Look at Price per Unit

Sometimes your normal brands jack up prices but since you are so used to buying them, you do not realise. Take a look at alternate brands. You may find that they offer better/similar quality produce for lower prices.

In fact, packaging and branding often result in price increases, so take a look at less attractively packaged products. They may be cheaper not because they are of poor quality but just because the company does not indulge in extensive promotional material for its goods.

Also look at prices per unit instead of price per bag or package. This will help you calculate your real expenditure on your purchases.

Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk can reduce price per unit, especially when there are offers. More importantly, it would save you time and petrol which is expensive. Stock up your kitchen to minimise shopping lists in the future.

Establish a Shopping Pool

Find friends or neighbours who share a the same schedule and budgeting sentiments with you. You may want to alternate trips to the shops and save on petrol. In fact, you may even find yourselves collectively buying in bulk and saving even more cash.

Shop After a Meal

Shop after you have eated. This way tidbits and other packed lunches would seen less enticing. This is better for your budget and for your health.

Shop During Non-Peak Times

Shop when the crowds are sparse so you do not end up wasting time waiting in line or roaming round and round in the congestion. Crowds can be stressful and you may end up shopping to release your irritation.

The longer you wait in the cashier’s line, the higher the the chance of you picking up last minute chocolate bars and candy stashed by the check out counter.

Shop without the Kids

Shopping with children can be frustrating when they know how to express their wants. You may end up buying plenty of treats that are not on your list. If you do have to bring your children along, set your ground rules and tell them in advance.

You may want to choose a no-treat trip or a budgeted-treat trip. Stick to your plan once you arrive at the shops.

It would be a good idea to teach your children about budgeting so they feel empathetic towards your spending habits and will eventually help you look out for good offers. Children often like to help and feel important in decision making. In the long run, you would also be cultivating healthy spending habits and curbing their own financial problems – something they would be grateful for when they grow up.

Pay with Cash or a Debit Card

Lastly, use the cash in your envelope to foot the bill. If you are not an envelope person, use your debit card. Do not use your credit card. You may swipe more than you realise and may even forget about making the payment. In the end, you will end up incurring interest, which will cause your budget to run haywire.

Take Shopping Seriously

Yes, shopping is fun, but it is also a serious issue when it comes to spending. Hopefully these tips will help alleviate financial burden when you hit the shops. With more less money spent while shopping, you would be able to save more for your children’s education or invest in profitable investment instruments.

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