I'll keep this blog short and sweet… for a reason. I wanted to investigate the trend of short and punchy copy which disrupts and demands attention.
This trend first came to our attention with this new launch. Redesigning the Simple Value range at Argos may not sound like the most enticing brief that could land on your desk – but The Partners nailed it. Easy-to-navigate packs carry a sense of bold pride: a visual identity which works in great partnership with the pointy choice of words on pack.
So why is this a trend now? Well, it looks like brands are beginning to realise that actually, reading about their product in store isn’t the highlight of our day. We don’t want to spend hours shopping, our spare time reading labels, or our evenings ploughing through terms and conditions. Does it contain batteries? Is it vegetarian? Ethically sourced?
So why does anybody write 30 words, when it's trendy to write 3? Well, it’s not something that can be applied everywhere; there are some occasions where this writing style could seem at odds, unnecessary or even downright insulting. But it’s a breath of fresh air compared to the flowery, conversational approach long-favoured by brands such as innocent and Oatly.
You might think that categories such as pharma or beauty couldn’t pull it off – but think again. There were some great examples in the Cannes Lions Festival winners this year who went against the cues of their category and totally owned this style of text. When ReThink Breast Cancer spoke to over 500 women, they learnt that often 'get well soon' gifts were tinged with forced optimism, which they couldn't relate to. So instead they launched Give-A-Care, a range which positioned itself as:
The first line of products for women with breast cancer. That actually understand women with breast cancer.
Every product is coupled with a cheeky one-liner, straight to the point and with a no-nonsense edge. The aesthetic works seamlessly with the copy, from pack to poster. It's a refreshing introduction of humour, which may have been missed or seemed negative had the copy not been spot-on.
Another brand embracing this approach is Goop, the online lifestyle blog headed up by Gwyneth Paltrow. She's often ridiculed for writing ridiculous articles and her choice of words (see 'conscious uncoupling'). Well, Goop have decided to cut the crap and lead with a new, no-nonsense naming convention for their skincare range.
I think this trend is incredibly refreshing – and if your brand can pull it off, then Bring. It. On.Email