Hi everyone.

Bit of background first... My 9-to-5 grind is in Telecom for a BIG COMPANY... Lately I've been itching to make a career change. So I re-worked some of my ideas from yester-year and put together a basic online book showcasing my work. My site is not very big, so you could probably browse it in less than 3 min. My skill is copy, but most everything here is my art direction too.

So here I am, groveling to a bunch of strangers for their opinion of my ability. Knowing my audience here, I hope to see very few comments like "seen it" or "done before." ;)

www.haleadvertising.com

So let me have it! Thanks all.
Chris

I've checked it out and I

I've checked it out and I like quite a bit of your writing. It's quite refreshing to actually see a good copywriter around, or to actually see a copywriter at all. The E-trade stuff I thought was really good.

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Thank you for the kind

Thank you for the kind words. It's easy to think your work measures up but having others qualify that belief sure helps one's confidence. At least for me it does...

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You've got some good work

You've got some good work there with some clever and insightful copy. I reckon you have a pretty good chance of impressing a Creative Director who'll give you a job. Good luck.

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Hey! You have put up all

Hey! You have put up all this work in a great hurry! Don't tell me no. But I am sure you have a bright career in advertising. I can make that somehow. Keep advertising.

I loved your idea behind the Dark Tanning ad.

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I also thought your tooth

I also thought your tooth whitener ad is the highlight of all the pieces. Best thing about your book is that I didn't find it boring or feel like I didn't want to read the copy; I guess thats why you're a copywriter. I get really impatient with reading text, and you managed to get me to read all your pieces. Great work!

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I'm adding this comment to

I'm adding this comment to bring this thread back to the top of the list (and this is the only time I'll do this!)... just looking for any other responses.

To all that have taken a look and responded, thank you. I appreciate it.

Lastly, if anyone has any advice for getting CDs to look at my work, please let me know (email or here in this thread). I am already employed (but not in the ad industry!) and really don't have the time to pound on doors and make calls ad naseum... which is partially why I thought putting a book online would be a simple way to speed up the process for getting on a Creative Director's radar.

Thanks, all.
Chris

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The Hawaiian Tropics ad is

The Hawaiian Tropics ad is gold. Absolutely gold. I remember seeing your book before and if I remember correctly the font you used was different. I didn't mind it before but the font you have now looks too much like it belongs in a comic book. It also kind of looks like jagged teeth, maybe that's why you chose it, but I still think a classic font would suit it so much better.

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I wish. As a copywriter

I wish. As a copywriter (with admitted marginal design skills), I decided to create some specs spots for Porsche because a) I know that audience and b) by "borrowing" that layout and with the right lines, I could pull off a spec campaign that might be mistaken for the real thing.

To be honest, I've never worked at any agency. My career, up to now, has been as an online marketer for a major telecom.

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Meant to comment on your

Meant to comment on your work earlier.

First of all...congrats...your portfolio definitely shows you can write more than just a vis-solution with a 3 word tag. It's better than A LOT of the copywriter books I've seen. But it's definitely not as good as the 10% of junior copywriters who'll be landing jobs at good agencies. You've got some pretty good stuff in there but you still need a lot of work.

Here we go...

-Alpine Shop
Like the writing. The AD is really rough though. You need to find an art director. I'd be careful too. Those headlines are awfully close to a campaign that won all types of awards Fallon did for Timberland a few years back. Always kill the weakest too. Don't put more than 3 print ads in a campaign.

-E-Trade
Not digging it. I don't personally like borrowed headlines from other campaigns (ie 'He who dies with the most toys is still dead'). Rest of the headlines are pretty good. It's not that though. Any investment company could use those headlines and tag. ETrade has such a unique approach to investing -- do it yourself, with a little help. Personally, I put this one of the b-roll.

-Miso
I didn't get the first headline and I was a bit unclear about the other two. At first I thought you were going into the Japanese work ethic but then I wondered if you were talking about the customers that frequent the place, like businessman. If you're going to do something this local, it better be a great campaign. This needs to be tightened up with a tag and that AD really needs to change. Very expected.

-Easy flame
I'd kill all the headlines except for #2. Like that one a lot. A also like 'Taste your BBQ, not your fuel.' The other 3 aren't bad, they just aren't good and they make the campaign jumps around a lot. Use #2 as your bar for the other two. I'd redo the AD as well. You don't need those visuals. I'd strip it down the minimum. Don't like the tag either 'Introducing the world's first reusable fire starter.' Ugh? Isn't a pocket lighter a reusable fire starter as well? You need to product shot with those your headlines. But you good start. Keep going on it.

-Strat (or whatever that logo on the guitar pic says)
Easy product and that execution has been done. Kill it.

-Porche
Don't use other ad agencies existing campaigns.

-Hawaiian Tropic
Love the headline. Best in your book. That AD is horrible though.

Here are my overall thoughts. You can write. You can write well. You got a good start on a book but you really need to push it. You need to think of how to extend campaigns past just print and into all levels of media. The days of hiring juniors with just print are dead. Also don't put more than 3 print ads in. Always kill the weakest one. And don't put filler campaigns in your book. If you have 3 great campaigns and 1 ok one, kill the 1 ok one. I'd pick harder products from a wider range. You need some kick ass campaigns for some really boring products. And you need to find an art director. Most your ads and layouts are expected and kind of cliche'. And your typography is bad.

Another thing too. I'm not sure how long you've been working or how old you are, but chances are if you're really serious about this and you get an offer from an agency, you're probably going to be making a lot less than you are now. Agencies don't pay junior's shit. There are too many ad school pumping out so many kids with books that agencies have a pick of the litter. Be warned.

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Thanks, Mike. You said a lot

Thanks, Mike. You said a lot and that's appreciated. One of my concerns with your critique is that many items mention the poor AD. I'm not about to argue that, that's spot on. But if I'm trying to showcase my writing, not my admitted lack of layout skills, is that really going to hurt me? I put this book together on my own -- without an AD or an ad school curriculum.

That said, the porsche ads use the now famous CL layout, but the lines and the tag/payoff (Experience. The Model Name.) are mine. Though I hear where you're coming from so my question is would these be better if I had given them their own layout? (Here we go again, I'm not an AD.)

The fender idea, which is to showcase the actual music, not the musician, I can tell you first hand, has not been in a major guitar magazine in the past 23 years. Leaf through any guitar mag and you'll see that every manufacturer shows a famous player next to their guitar. The only agency that's done anything to break that mold is Carmichael (for Gibson) and VitroRobertson for Taylor. It's a simple idea, yes, but one that I've never seen done before, and I've been playing guitar since I was 11.

The eTrade spots dont borrow from other work. That line was derived from an old poster with a bunch of sports cars in front of a big mansion (He who dies with the most toys wins.) that your dad and my dad probably had in their garage. I don't know the line you refer to. Beyond that, the etrade approach as you mention (do it yourself) is exactly what my tag line is saying: Make it Happen. So I'm not sure what's not jiving there for you.

I hear you on the Miso spots. But so you understand what I'm trying to get to... Miso is an upscale sushi bar in a very white collar district of st louis. Their after-work happy hour is filled with attractive people. The lines [are supposed to] insinuate getting lucky (i.e. Fresh Sushi. And if you're lucky the catch of the day.) I'll take a deeper dive into these... maybe a solid tag line would complete them.

Same on the easyflame... I hear where youre coming from. I'll try to tighten that work.

Nonetheless, thank you for the advice and critique. My retort here is not intended to make excuses, but rather to explain where I was coming from and close the gap where the work didn't hit the mark.

I'd love to continue this conversation via e-mail. chris@haleadvertising.com Thanks, Mike.

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