The Twilight Between

There’s something I’ve noticed about the best ad writers in the world.

They write neither fiction or nonfiction.

Instead, they weave both in a twilight realm that is the truth told more powerful than reality.

It’s like this. You know how there are fictional works based on real events?

Well, good ads are like that but they’re reality based on fiction.

Pure facts can be informative, but not moving.
Pure fiction can be moving, but not informative.

The average ad writer will pick one side and hunker in.

The great ad writers know they must marry both together in seamless copy.

In practice, ads must be based on truth. It’s the only place to start. But once your foundation is laid you must paint a fictional reality that does not yet exist, in which your customer can see themselves experiencing the benefits of your product or service.

This is not smoke-and-mirrors and it’s not dishonest because the fictional part is what will come to pass. Just as soon as they become your customer.

So, what’s your strength?

Are you better at laying out the facts or painting fiction?

Whichever way you lean, the path to leveling up your ad writing lays in embracing the other side.

– Zac Smith, VC