Grammar rules are useful, and yet, there are times when rules need to be broken. Sometimes, breaking the rules actually helps you share your message. It’s fun too. Here are some grammar rule-breaking ideas in advertising, children’s book writing, and business copywriting.
Advertising: Apple’s Slogan, “Think Different” Communicates More
Imagine if Apple’s slogan read “Think Differently.” Would it have the same punch?
“Think Differently” communicates the message of thinking outside the box and trying new ideas, but “Think Different” says more. It’s like saying that Apple’s products are different. You could also take the phrase to mean that Apple values diversity, and that its developers and engineers think about difference in their work. As a blind person, I have found Apple’s products more useable out of the box than any other, so I can attest to Apple’s difference.
Good advertising sticks in your head, and breaking grammatical rules is a perfect way to do that. A rule-breaking ad might fit better into a jingle or roll off the tongue easier. If people remember the product, and if they feel good as they remember, they’re more likely to buy.
Award-Winning Children’s author Barbara Park Writes In A Child’s Voice
Barbara Park is an award-winning author of humorous children’s book series, including Junie B. Jones. To write in Junie B.’s voice, Park breaks grammar rules all the time, using phrases like “bestest friend” and “my heart got very pumpy.”
Since Junie B. is a kindergartener or first grader in Park’s writing, the little kid’s voice needs to be believable. It also sounds like Junie B. is talking directly to her readers.
Breaking grammatical rules also helps readers feel what Junie B. might feel. If Park had used straight language, she would drop some of the emotion and charm of her books.
While business copywriting doesn’t have quite the same charm, it often has some of the same goals. Like children’s book authors, copywriters move people with their words. Grammar takes a back seat to this basic truth.
Copywriters Everywhere Break These Simple Rules
As a copywriter, I aim for conversational writing, balanced with some variety and a smooth delivery. To accomplish this, here’s how I break the rules:
- Ending a sentence with a preposition such as “on” or “about,” for more natural-sounding language
- Starting a sentence with “or” or “but,” so I can emphasize contrast
- Using contractions to sound more conversational
- Using sentence fragments to emphasize my point
Do You Need to Break A Copywriting Rule Today?
As a copywriter, I will work with you to tell your story, in your voice. Contact Wise Words That Matter today to explore the creative possibilities.