Advertising Copy: Definition, Types, Examples

An advertising copy is a term used to describe the main text used in the advertisement. The text could be a dialogue, a catchy punch line or a company’s dictum.

It is a print, radio or TV advertising message that aims at developing and retaining an interest of the target customer and prompting him to purchase the product within a couple of seconds.

Advertising Copy Of Burger King

According to the UK advertising guru, David Ogilvy, ‘people do read lengthy advertisements if they are skillfully written’. The most significant part of the copy is the headline, and sometimes even a small shift in the text brings magnanimous results. A short ad copy is the most popular in consumer-product advertising, or an artful, indigenous lengthy ad copy may work wonders too. An advertisement copy is mostly a result of extensive advertising and consumer research designed by professional copywriter’s employees by advertising agencies. Drafting an ad copy demands skill and effort. An ad copy involves a complete investigation of the target audience. There is a substantial effort that goes into making an ad copy. Companies outsource their ad campaigns. The advertisement industry flourishes when they succeed in delivering the advertisement just like its copy.


An ad copy is made of various principles, all of which are integrated into a few lines of the copy that the advertisers are allowed to engage. It combines search engine optimisation with marketing strategies and is used in all kinds of advertisements, not only pay per click and contextual ads. The essentials of a good ad copy are as follows:

Essentials Of An Ad Copy

Credibility- An ad copy must focus on the credibility or the reliability of the ad. The copywriters should essentially flaunt an element of reliability in the ad so that the consumers are convinced to go ahead with the product. The credibility of an advertisement is the extent of honesty in the ad message. Misleading and misinterpreted ads harm the reputation of the selling house.

Attention- The keywords, punch lines or phrases that seize the attention of the potential consumers or some component in the ad that attracts the target audience is essential in a good advertising copy.

Assurance of benefitAn advertisement copy must contain some promise of the benefits that the product offers if the consumer purchases and uses the product.

Brief and clear- An ad copy must be brief and clear, i.e. it must be to the point. It doesn’t mean that the copy must omit the important elements of the ad. A clear copy is easy and quick to be read by the readers. It is self-explanatory, definite, and precise. Clarity makes way for interpretation.

Apt and conforming- The copy must be apt and must match the needs of the prospects. A copywriter has to use the most suitable USP. Every ad copy must meet the conforming standards and rules acceptable to the advertising media and the laws of the land. A copy that offends the morality challenges religious beliefs of the people is not welcomed by any media.

Types Of Advertising Copy

Technique or formula of presentation of an ad is the way in which a message is presented. Various types of advertisement copies are formulated to inform, inspire, influence, affect, engrave, and inscribe the mindset of the reader. Certain elements are significant in a copy like the attention, conviction, sentiment, instinct, and education.

The advertisement copies can be divided into six main types:

  • Human interest ad copy
  • Educational ad copy
  • Reason why? ad copy
  • Institutional ad copy
  • Suggestive ad copy
  • Expository ad copy

Types Of Ad Copy

Human Interest Copy

Human interest copy entices the emotions and senses of its prospective customers rather than the intellect and judgment. This advertisement copy defines the product to people instead of sticking to facts. Human Interest copy gets to selling part indirectly or reluctantly. It focuses on people’s undying interest in themselves, their families and friends. The most important forms of Human Interest Copy are- humorous copy, fear copy, predicament copy, and story copy.

Forms Of Human Interest Copy


Humorous ad copy is a copy which is designed to make the reader laugh. This copy brings about a smile on the readers face.


Fear ad copy arouses a sense of fear in the reader to save their lives or to protect themselves from something. It creates interest among its consumers by instilling a sense of fear in them. Fear advertisement copies must be designed carefully as it may carry an unpleasant association on the viewer’s mind concerning the product.


In a story copy, a story is narrated in a very interesting way to develop interest amongst its prospects. Customer experiences can also be narrated in the form of a story.


In a predicament copy, the copy provides a dramatic explanation about the product. This copy explains all the advantages and benefits of using the product. The predicament copy usually takes over the other three forms of the advertisement copy.

Human Interest Copy Example

Reason Why Copy

A Reason Why advertising copy offers reasons as to why the consumers are expected to buy the product of a particular brand. The reason why copy appeals directly to the intellect or the judgment of an individual than the emotions. It tries to explain the product qualities and benefits by giving evidence in the forms of testimonials, guarantees, customer experiences, and so on.

The approach of this copy explains reasons to readers as to why the advertised product has to be purchased. The format of this copy states a fact about a product or a service in the headline and then explaining why the fact is true in its further text. This form of advertising works better in print than on media, because broadcasting an ad has a limitation with respect to time. There are good chances of the viewer missing the headline or the reasons why the headline claims to be the truth.

Reason Why Copy Example

Educational Ad Copy

An educational ad copy attempts to inform, update and prompts its clients to buy a product by educating the prospective customers. It is designed to educate the public about the attributes of the product. Introductory ad copies are usually created in this way. It is the responsibility of every manufacturer to educate the prospects regarding the product and endure a warm welcome amongst its clients. Such an ad copy signifies the benefits and special features of the product.

Educational Copy Example

Institutional Ad Copy

Institutional copy doesn’t sell its goods and services. Institutional ad copy aims at promoting the selling house. It focuses to build a strong reputation for the selling house. The main objective of this type of ad copy is to create, maintain, and increase the goodwill through its philosophy, objectives and policies so that the prospective customers register it in their minds. Institutional copy invites the target customers to the selling outlet. It is also called as prestige or corporate advertising.


Institutional Copy Example

Suggestive Copy

A suggestive copy suggests or attempts to convey the message to the readers directly or indirectly and prompts them to purchase the product. Suggestive ad copy works best when the reader is confused regarding the quality of the product and is juggling with decision making regarding his purchase.

Suggestive Copy Example

Expository Copy

Expository copy conflicts with the Suggestive copy. An Expository copy doesn’t conceal anything about the product but instead exposes the facts that are clear and apt. It describes the product features, uses, merits, operation and benefits of the products or services. Even a swift glance registers quickly in the consumer’s mind and is quite easy to remember or pick up.

Expository Copy Example

Writing an ad copy is an art of putting in the words or the elements that create a strong desire to possess the product wherein the product features satiate the consumers desire to possess the product. It is the ability to eliminate the surplus and substitute it with the essential elements without jeopardising the meaning.

Action is the essential end goal of any advertisement copy, which is to receive some reaction from the target audience for the advertisement. It could be just about visiting the page of the brand on the net, enquiring or filling a form or the actual purchase itself.


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