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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 3 December 2015
This book is generally considered to be a direct response marketing classic.

John Caples was a naval engineer turned advertising man, and like all engineers, he thrived on feedback and analysis. The only thing that interested him was advertising that sold and he systematically tested small changes to see if he could find things that worked even better.

He was also a creative genius with words. At the age of 25 and within months of starting as a copywriter, he created one of the classic headlines to sell a correspondence course in playing the piano."They Laughed When I Sat Down At The Piano But When I Started To Play!-"

Within a month, He had reworked the headline to sell a French correspondence course: "They grinned when the waiter spoke to me in French - but their laughter turned to amazement at my reply". This emotional pull - embarrassment turns into unexpected respect - has been reworked many times since.

The book is particularly strong on headlines and a comparison of the results of headlines which have worked against those that didn't. The blunt truth is that if the headline doesn't capture the reader's attention, the advert is ignored and the product isn't sold. These few chapters will pay for the cost of the book on its own many times over.

The rest of the book is also packed with advertising ideas that works. When you see them, you can understand why but when you're trying to put the words together for yourself, things are never this easy.

Fred Hahn has done an excellent job in bringing this advertising and copywriting classic comparatively up to date with this revision. Modern adverts are used as well as the old classics and you can see how things have developed.

The advice on headlines has stayed with me since I first read the book. There is some repetition which can get frustrating but I still rate it as a five star book. My copy is covered in highlights to make it easier to review. While the ideas and concepts in this book are referred to in many modern copywriting books, I don't believe that there is any substitute for reading the original.

About my book reviews - I aim to be a tough reviewer because the main cost of a book is not the money to buy it but the time needed to read it and absorb the key messages. 5 stars means that I think that overall it has some vital messages in it.

Paul Simister, business coach
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on 22 July 1998
David Ogilvy describes this as the most useful book on advertising that he has ever read. This book teaches all of us, from novice to veteran, everything we need to know to create advertising that sells; which is the whole purpose of the industry. Whether you are in a large agency or a one person show, reading this book will give you the edge you need. Read it. Then read it again. Considering the amount of tested information between the covers, it seems to me that the price you pay is a tiny fraction of its true value.
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on 11 December 2010
If there's one thing that is drummed into you as a marketer, it's that "if you can't measure it, you can't tell whether you're marketing's been successful or not", and that's where this book comes in handy.

This book, time after time, tells you what to expect from a whole range of advertising experiments. It's easy to read and understand. It's logical. It's been tested. It works.

If you are a Marketer, or a business owner responsible for your own advertising, then you need to buy this book.

Jason Sullock, author of 555 Quick n Dirty Marketing Tips
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on 17 February 1999
I had forgotten how much of my own work as a copywriter has been influenced by it. The 5th edition is full of commonsense advice and updated examples of Caples's principles at work in the real world. And what a thrill to discover my own work cited for "doing everything right" (Select Comfort ad, p 10.). Thanks for keeping Caples ideas alive for another generation.
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on 20 February 1999
Dealing with the hocus pocus of ad agencies is mind numbing from a marketer's perspective. This book gives you the specifics to challenge their "expertise." The most important part of this book is that the underlying objective of advertising is "to create sales". You will not find that in most modern advertising books. Excellent book.
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on 14 July 2000
Caples was one of the most capable men to write on the effectiveness of advertising. Because he worked in direct-mail advertising most of his life. The book is full of Gems and suggestions that are as applicable today as they were in his days. Tested Advertising Methods is as basic to advertising as the alphabet is to mankind.
I also suggest; How to make you advertising make money also by Caples and Ogilvy on Advertsing by David Ogilvy.
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on 15 May 1999
This book gives the basic knowledges required to write good ads and reminds us that advertising is about bringing more business to your client and not winning an award for "creativity"... Well written and quickly read: it should be a requirement in any business school.
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on 10 October 2014
A timeless book with some great advice
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on 7 February 2015
Classic book
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on 15 February 2015
Very, very good book! A lot of the young ones in advertising should read this, if it ain't broke don't try to fix it......why try to reinvent the wheel?
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