Condensing the message

October 26, 2014

How do you summarise the message into the one-line essence that will get attention? While still having all the detail to support your proposition?

“The Pyramid Principle” by Barbara Minto was the original bible on this – but last week I saw an advertising poster on the London Underground which turned it into an art form.

From left to right was a series of messages –

  • “My train’s practically here, make it snappy” – a one line pitch.
  • ”My train’s a couple of minutes away, tell me more. But don’t bore me.” – two sentences about how it works.
  • “My train’s who know where, hit me with all you’ve got” – more detail of the benefits

And so it went on, each column adding more detail. And culminating in a call to action “OK, I’m intrigued, what now?”

And clever to acknowledge the context of place and reader .

A nice ad and a nice illustration of getting a message summarised.

Hive ad 141013

(Sorry about the quality of the photo – but the Tube during rush hour isn’t a place to dawdle)