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Showing 1-10 of 48 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 67 reviews
on January 30, 2014
The best direct response marketers cannot give this book enough praise and I can see why.. This is the basics of which every great campaign is built. If you don't have this knowledge then you are on shaky grounds. It is based on common sense, which is what most ad agencies try to remove from the evaluation process regarding campaigns.

In the end of the day, any ad should pull enough profits to justify the cost of running it. And if you are not measuring it, or just "branding", how would you ever know if you are getting your money back vs flushing money down the toilet?

If you are a business owner, read this book before ad agencies and other sneaky media sales reps takes your last dollar.. And don't believe in the branding BS, unless you are Coca Cola and have distribution in virtually every location thinkable.

David Ogilwy, which is probably the most famous ad-man in the world, said that every serious advertiser should have read this book at least 7 times. So do yourself a favor and read it at least 3 times. You will thank yourself later (and hopefully read it another 4 times)..

It is interesting to see how a book this old, can still be as relevant today almost a 100 years later..
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on June 12, 2016
The elements of true Copywriting from the man who brought the names of products into your household that you use everyday. WIthout qualifications, degrees, Hopkins was astute enough to use an analysis or method to measure the reaction of the user of the product. He put people first because he was just an ordinary person.

The use of the term "scientific advertising" is to make the advertiser feel more comfortable pushing papers around to make money. The advertiser represents the seller and the Copywriter represents the consumer.

Hopkins, the Copywriter, the one who writes the copy for the advertiser, represents the user the person who puts the bread and butter on the table of the advertiser. Contrary to Corporate opinion you don't need a college degree to be a Copywriter. The two greatest faults in advertising are boasts and selfishness.

If you are a seller advertising your products and services this is the book written for you.
If you are a Copywriter writing the copy you'll recognize yourself in the text. Like Hopkins, you understand confidence in the product and confidence in the people.
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on March 15, 2014
There are giants of the marketing and advertising community that basically swear by both of these works.

That should be enough, but it isn't because unless you extract the gems and see how they are still so applicable today as they were years ago, you don't know what these books are about.

I've learned from a lot of people, got the shiny object syndrome and all of that, but at the end of the day, I learned the real stuff, with minimal repeats of what the 'gurus' of today talk about - and almost everything good that they do say has hooks or straight up ripping off from the concepts in this little compilation.

If my kids were going into advertising, I'd have them read Jay Abraham, then Claude Hopkins to get up to speed on what persuading and efficient advertising really is.

Don't let the older school english throw you off, the guy was a genius, and employing his advertising methodology and philosophy will put you in a whole other league.
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on October 28, 2014
Many detailed reviews on the virtues of this twin book have been already posted here. I doubt I can add to them in any meaningful way. I will just add my perspective.

I am new to the world of advertising, having taken up direct response copywriting as my new career. I am awestruck at the level of sophistication practiced by Hopkins and the array of new techniques he had invented that are still being used today.

I only had a chance to complete the first book, My Life in Advertising, the biographical version. I am working on the second part, Scientific Advertising.

While we all respect Hopkins for for his contribution to the industry, it was touching to read his reflection on his own career, wondering about the peaceful life he could have had as opposed to his chosen path of workaholism that enabled him to rise to such heights. The human element is always there.
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on April 12, 2014
It's an amazing thing to read the words of a man from hundred years past that today ring true; as clearly as the melody of an incoming Skype call.

In today's fractured communication landscape, where messages overlap, intersect and collide in their frantic attempts to woo a desensitised audience, the fundamental truths are more important than ever. Basic needs and wants, everyday cares and concerns of everyday people are paramount. In this books lays the perfect reminder of the real world and the real people who inhabit it - our customers.

The truth in advertising comes from empathy; anyone who has spent time on the front lines of sales has learnt this first hand. Anyone else can learn in from reading this book.
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on December 26, 2008
Claude C. Hopkins (1866-1932) was a pioneer in the advertising industry. This volume consists of his two books: Scientific Advertising written in 1923, and My Life in Advertising written in 1927. NBC and CBS were founded around the time of Hopkins' retirement, so his work predated the broadcasting era. The media of his time were newspapers, magazines, and direct mail.

"Salesmanship-in-print is exactly the same as salesmanship-in-person." If the purpose of advertising is to sell, then its effectiveness can be measured by resulting sales volume. Hopkins tested ads on a small scale before risking money on a large-scale campaign. He also compared results using different headlines in order to discover the best performing approach.

"Never seek to amuse. That is not the purpose of advertising." Hopkins would likely be disturbed by a great deal of modern advertising where creativity overshadows salesmanship.

Hopkins used free trials to successfully penetrate markets, but he felt the word "free" cheapens a product. Instead he would say, "We will buy your first package." He did not find it effective to give away samples to people who did not request them.

"Some say, be very brief... That would be an unthinkable handicap... Every ad. in my opinion, should tell a complete story. It should include every facet and argument found to be valuable. Most people I figure, read a story once, as they do a news item. I know of no reason why they should read it again."

The vocabulary sounds surprisingly modern, with a few exceptions here and there, such as dilatory, folly, palaver, rudiments, and trifle. The prices (one cent postage stamp) and car brands (Chalmers, Hudson, Mitchell, Overland, Reo, Studebaker) add a bit of early twentieth century flavor.

Scientific Advertising (100 pages, 21 short chapters) may be purchased as a standalone volume. The autobiography (200 pages) adds additional context through stories about various campaigns.

With today's trend towards data-driven decisions and increased scrutiny of marketing budgets, this 85-year-old book is surprisingly relevant. While some of the techniques from Hopkins' time may no longer be effective, the fundamental message of Scientific Advertising is timeless.
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on April 19, 2007
Hopkins's career began at the dawn of advertising and copywriting. As his career progressed so did advertising and he gives us a behind the scenes look at many advertising campaigns from the late 1800's-1920's. Hopkins almost single-handedly helped take copywriting out of its "swaddling clothes."

Of equal interest is his personal history. He was raised in a strict religious home and expected to become a minister. But at age 17 he delivered a sermon that revealed his true beliefs, which were more liberal than his mother's, and he said it was the defining moment of his life. Not once, however, does he criticize his parents or his upbringing and he credits his mother for his advertising and copywriting skills.

Hopkins launched his career in Grand Rapids, Michigan and eventually moved to Chicago, and other cities, for bigger and better jobs. Yet he says that he wondered if remaining in Grand Rapids and living a quiet life wouldn't have been the better choice. He remained connected to normal, real people even after becoming affluent and said he learned much about contentment from them. Hopkins's attitude is very different from most authors of modern business and personal finance books, where it's all about the money.

Scientific Advertising is, as you already know, must reading for advertisers and copywriters. The chapters are short and address very specific topics: headlines, letters, individuality, telling a full story, and, my favorite, service. "The good salesman does not merely cry a name...He pictures the customer's side of his service until the natural result is to buy."

In this book you will not only learn about advertising but you will encounter a humble man who remained detached from the trappings that advertising can sometimes present.
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on September 16, 2017
Good product!
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on August 27, 2013
For anyone who still believes that going into business is inherently more risky than working in a job, here is your cure ;)

I learned these principles from a mentor a couple of years ago and they literally changed my life completely. I actually believe that going into business without a firm understanding of these principles is sheer madness...
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on October 30, 2014
My Life in Advertising and Scientific Advertising by Claude Hopkins is a very inspirational book! Mr. Hopkins proselytizing the "gospel" of great advertising. He introduced innovative ideas such as coupons, ad testing, and risk reversal. I would recommend this book to any business major who can learn by Mr. Hopkins' example on how to persevere in spite of challenging obstacles.
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