Here’s How TV Commercials Help Copywriters

I was happily binge-watching Letterkenny on Hulu, when a Peloton ad flashed on the screen.

If you watch live or streaming television, you’ve probably seen one of their ads. Beautiful people with amazing homes and zero body fat furiously pedal their Peloton bikes while somehow still looking attractive.

(How do those people do it? I look like a wet rat after a workout.)

“A hard 20 after a hard day isn’t for everyone,” the voice-over warns. “Waking up before the sun isn’t for everyone.”

You can check out this commercial and this one if you haven’t seen them before. 

 

 

Yes, Peloton’s ads make me laugh. Yes, I love mocking the amazing homes and the glistening models with perfect hair and the just right amount of sweat.

BUT…

I have to give it up for Peloton. Their ad copy is exceptionally brilliant.

Let’s break this down…

  1. The company sets a clear, target customer expectation, “Only certain kinds of people are Peloton people.” The viewer can immediately self-select and decide if they are a “hard 20 after work” person — or more of a “let’s sit on the couch and watch Hulu” person.
  2. If they are a “hard 20” person and are interested in the bike, they’re reinforced by visuals with pretty people enjoying their fun workouts in their amazing houses. Sure, most of Peloton’s target audience may not currently live in a top-floor condo and look sexy while they sweat —  but hey, maybe, a $2,500 exercise bike will get them there.
  3. And then, they learn they can make payments of under $60 a month. For the person in their target market sweet-spot, $60 a month to have the life and body they’ve always wanted is a bargain. This is a sweet way to overcome the “I can’t afford it” objection and to make their target audiences’ dream life a reality.

Why do I bring this up?

Sometimes, as entrepreneurs and writers, we get so focused on writing copy that “appeals to the masses” that we forget an important point.

“The masses” aren’t our target audience.

Look at how Peloton structures their ads. Sure, people mock their ads (most likely, people who aren’t in their target audience.) 

Yet, I bet those ads are making Peloton a lot of money. 

Let’s face it: their ad agency knows exactly what makes their target market tick — and they twist that “are you one of us?” knife throughout their commercials.

It’s hard-hitting and done exceptionally well.

Sure, their commercials exclude a lot of people. Not everyone has a beautiful condo and perfect workout hair. Not everyone is physically able to work out.

Does Peloton care? No. Because they aren’t out to please the couch-bound people. Or, the people who would prefer a gym. Or, the people who don’t have $60 a month lying around. 

I may mock Peloton, but they teach copywriters an important lesson:

When we write copy that pleases everyone, our copy loses its power.

So, if you’ve been afraid to write laser-focused copy because, “you don’t want to lose possible customers,” think again.

You don’t need everyone to come to your site — but you do need the right people. 

And those are the people for whom you carefully craft your content. Not “everyone.”

What do you think?

Have you fallen into the “I have to create content for everyone” trap? Do you look at your own content and think, “Ugh, yeah. This is not good”? Leave a comment and let me know!

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