Logically, it would be better to abbreviate words in a PPC Ad, because the meaning is still conveyed, but you save characters. Emotionally, an abbreviation just doesn’t have the same affective impact as the word, because it requires longer to translate.


Logically, it shouldn’t really matter whether free shipping or some other enticement is on the first or second line of body copy — the offer is still included in the ad, and the searcher is obviously reading the copy, so… Emotionally, the sequencing and placement of your offers/words makes a HUGE difference.


For copywriters, it helps to think in terms of mental images. What mix of mental pictures, sounds, emotions, tastes, and so on run through the mind of the searcher when she reads your copy. Your job is to create and sequence powerful images.


So with that in mind, take a look at this contest — can you tell me what the deciding difference is?


So, there isn’t that much different between the two ads, right?


The winning ad drops the “Fast shipping,” probably because “fast shipping” is meaningless to most consumers. Free shipping is powerful and can be quite compelling. Fast shipping, on the other hand, is expected and therefore not worth mentioning, so dropping it was a good move on the part of BoostCTR ad writer, WordIsBorn.


The winning ad swaps out “Buy” in favor of “Shop,” another good move. And this one certainly involves mental imagery, as the emotional associations with “Shop” are much better than those for “Buy.” People like to shop. They like buying decidedly less so, as it involves the pain of parting with their money. To wit, there’s no such thing as “shoppers remorse.” Another good call by WordIsBorn


But the real difference is in the use of “T-Shirts, Hoodies & More” vs. “T-Shirts & More.” Why? Because even though your brain can logically process the “& More” to mean, “and additional imprinted items,” it has a tough time picturing those unspecified, additional items. “T-shits & More” creates the mental image of “Mostly T-shirts and a few accessories.”


“T-Shirts, Hoodies & More,” on the other hand, supplies the imagination of the searcher with one of those “& More” items, creating a decidedly different mental image, to the tune of “T-Shirts, Hoodies, and other imprinted clothing.” This change isn’t merely a good move — it’s a brilliant one.


Logically, the two ads should be equivalent. Emotionally the difference is big enough to account for a very emotional greater than doubling of click-through rate — or a 119% increase in CTR, for you logical types.


Either way, it’s a difference worth thinking & getting excited about.