A Copywriter’s Blog

Nothing would make me happier than if Facebook suddenly became the new MySpace. But with over 750 million users, even that best case scenario won’t happen until my children’s children have dropped social networks altogether in favor of Direct-Emotional-Psychic-Feedback-9000 implants.

So here’s what I think will happen before then.

My bet is that Facebook will remain the social network of high-school and college students the world over. Because, if you think about it, Facebook is tailor-made for self-absorbed narcissists.

In Facebook, everything you do is public. Every update is basically you standing on top of a building with a bullhorn, shouting out whatever crosses your mind to everyone you’ve ever met. Even the act of you posting on someone else’s wall is just you saying “I’m talking to this person, but I’m doing it really loudly so you can all hear what I’m saying and comment on it if you want”.

Which is why I think that Google+ will become the new standard for post-college people. With Circles each post is like you walking into a room, seeing who’s there, and going “Here’s something I think you guys might like.” Which is the sort of functionality that could be useful to someone who has to keep their “work friends” separate from their “sorry-I-puked-on-your-cat-last-weekend friends”.

Or, in other words, this.

Google+ ProTip:
People keep asking me why there’s no way to message someone directly on Google+. There is. It’s called email. I know. That blew my mind too.

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Obligatory Super Bowl Ad Post Ben Levy 7, February

I had a whole post ready to go so that I wouldn’t have to worry about it after watching the ads during the super bowl. And then I realized: I clearly have to post about the ads that ran during the super bowl. Oh well. Here we go:

Things I do not want to see in next year’s Super Bowl:

Talking babies. (E*Trade)
It was cute at first. It was. But we have YouTube now. And you are essentially a YouTube meme that has run it’s course. Stop now and I won’t have to make fun of you as badly as the others on this list.

Clydesdale (Budweiser)
You’re done. It’s been a good run, but I think you’ve run this campaign into the ground. It’s gone lame. Stop beating it. Your ads hurt more than these cliches.)

I hate you. I have always hated you. You have never given me a single reason to not hate you. I will continue to use you for hosting. Please understand that this is IN SPITE of your shitty, misogynistic, ads. May the people responsible be caught by angry feminists during their time of the month.

More of this please:

I seem to be one of the few people on the planet who was aware of this campaign before tonight. It wasn’t new, but it was great. And one of the few ads with great writing (more on that later).

Your commercials are utterly retarded. Completely stupid. Infinitely infantile. And I laughed at almost all of them. Don’t ever change.

At least a few of your spots were UGC (User Generated Content, for those of you who aren’t in the biz). That’s a powerful thing, because it meant that once you picked it, it was done. Your corporate office couldn’t come in later and alter a line, add a scene, re-shoot the whole thing. What you pick is what you get, and I think that makes your Super Bowl spots better than a lot of the others. That doesn’t mean you should chuck your entire ad staff and just have consumers produce your ads. It does mean you should let your ad agencies create an entertaining spot and then get the hell out of the way so they can do their job.

The Dorito Gym Ninja was possibly my favorite this year. Because it was just fun. I think most of the Super Bowl spots are suffering from taking themselves too seriously. Any spot where someone gets a snack chip shuriken to the neck is clearly above such problems.

In Closing
Overall, this year’s offering was pretty crappy. Particularly from a copy standpoint. A few spots had good writing- Dodge Charger, Emerald Nuts/Pop Secret- but this is the Super Bowl. They should have had great writing. And much, much better tag lines.

Listen corporate overlords: it is not enough for your Super Bowl spot to be in the Super Bowl. Things are harder now. The stakes have been raised. You’re competing with YouTube. Just because you spent a hojillion dollars and sacrificed three virgins to a two-headed goat in order to get your media buy does not mean it’s automatically a great ad. It also has to NOT SUCK. The Doritos Ninja was like a 30-second comedy bit. The Google spot was essentially a tiny movie. They weren’t just ads. They were entertainment. That’s what you all need to be.

What I want for next year is less suck. More sense. Better writing. Get on it.