Tuesday, 19 January 2010

The Power of Words

“Words start wars and end them, create love and choke it, bring us to laughter and joy and tears. Words cause men and women willingly to risk their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honour. Our world as we know it revolves around the power of words.” Secret Formula’s of the Wizard of Ads.

A Personal Perspective

I Love words and always have. I play word games as often as I can because I find it simply riveting. When I chat with good friends I can often get captivated in the conversation and find it hard to sleep afterwards. When I read the opening paragraph for the first time, it resonated with my very core because I have experienced the charisma and repulsion that words have to offer.. both written and verbalised. I’m not sure who ever said “sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never harm me”.. but it’s completely inaccurate in my opinion.

I believe an inescapable fact is that the leaders of our world are not consistently remembered for how they laughed, paged a book, walked into a room or their visual appearance but rather for what they said. So many quotes have touched lives of those who are not wordsmiths by nature, and even some that are. History also reflects the need to keep it simple.. the shorter the quote, the more effective the impact. It’s the choice of the combination of words that make it ripple into our subconscious.

In Advertising

A vital cog in any advertising agency’s team is their copywriter. Funnily enough they are often overlooked, especially by clients. An Account Manager from a firm is so often assaulted with the ever so tedious question: “why should I pay this much for some writing” and every so often it comes down to an even less palatable statement “I will write it for you and then you can just edit it”. It would be a phenomenal sight (yet to be seen by mois) where a client can actually write something truly worth publishing. They may be intensely qualified to run their business, but they are painfully unqualified to write copy.

If there is nothing else you take from this blog post, let it be: words are worth paying for! A copy writer knows how to make the most of as few words as possible. If they can arrest someone’s attention with electrifying words, their job is done! If you want someone to remember your ad and message, make it simple, clear and captivating. As a business owner or production person, you are not equipped with these skills – leave it to the professionals.

Scientifically Speaking

Without going into detail on the factual and technical side of how we tick, which as an aside is often my favourite part, here’s a small insight into what makes words work for us. Read chapter 5 of Secret Formula’s of the Wizard of Ads for a more in-depth explanation. Wernicke’s area is purposefully positioned in the brain where the association of auditory and visual signals meet to fulfil its function of naming objects. It rules the nouns of our vocabulary.

Broca is on the other side of the auditory association that links into the motor association cortex. This cortex is the centre of all physical action and Broca’s area is the hub for action words..a veritable verb manufacturer. It energetically generates verbs, passionately formulates sentences and waits with baited breath to hear what others have to say. If you present Broca’s area with a predictable sentence, write up, description etc, it will - as sure as the sky is blue - ignore what you have to say. If you manage to engage it with your opening gambit, you’re on a winning wicket!

On the Web

cozwecan.com intends to harness the true power of communication and more simply words. Our challenge is to keep it simple and understandable even to the man on the street, yet arresting enough to engage the more cognitively affluent of society. I believe that words have the potential to make or break any site in the end.


Make use of undoubtedly the most powerful force there has ever been. Use explosive and energetic words in work you want to make a statement with. It will reap benefits that you’ve never imagined.

Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind ~ Rudyard Kipling

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