You’ve gotta go tour the factory.
Another OG MadMan story, this time from the father of the USP himself, Rosser Reeves.
Legend has it that when Reeves was looking for the USP for M&M’s, he refused to simply sit in his office and think. He insisted on going out and touring the factory itself.
While there, one of the workers scooped a bunch of M&M’s straight off the conveyor belt and offered them to Reeves. The worker was sweating bullets, but the M&M’s didn’t melt a bit.
Reeves was surprised, and asked what the secret was. The reply, “Oh, M&M’s are the only sugar-coated candy made. So they only melt when you eat ‘em.”
Just like that, inspiration struck.
To this day, the tagline he wrote “M&M’s: Melts in your mouth, not in your hands.” Is consistently rated the greatest of all time.
When interviewed about it many years later, Reeves explained “Perhaps it could’ve been phrased 15 different ways, but the idea for the campaign was obvious once I saw it. It was inherent in the product.”
Great copywriting does not happen behind a desk, or inside an ivory tower.
If you really want to find those brilliant hooks, you’ve gotta go straight to the source.
When you finally do, you’ll realize they’re right there, clear as day, just waiting for you to find them.