The title of my book on marketing creativity is All You Need Is A Good Idea!. With 20-20 hindsight, if I could create the title anew, I would leave out the “!” Partially because, as F. Scott Fitzgerald said, “An exclamation point is like laughing at your own joke.”
I feel the same way regarding “Got it?” headlines. I hereby apologize for any of them I might have used in the past. I don’t mean headlines that literally use the words “Got it?” I am talking about the puns and plays on words that are so shabby, it is as if someone were standing next to you, poking you in the ribs, and asking if you got their “clever” use of language.
Headlines like the one above. “New ways to get it write!” Not enough that they used an exclamation point, but to make certain that you got it, they put the pun in a different color than the rest of the headline. And yes, newspaper headlines do this all the time, “Grave mistake on former mayor’s tombstone.” And of course there are the humorous puns: I bet the butcher that he couldn’t reach the meat on the top shelf. He refused to take the bet, saying that the steaks were too high. But those are different categories. Me, I just talk marketing.
The point is that I really don’t mind puns, (the fancy name is “paronomasia”) if they are actually clever. Heck, I don ‘t mind most things if they are witty. Just be careful of patting yourself on the back as you poke your target in the ribs, to make sure they notice your sharp turn of phrase. The point is not to call attention to yourself, but to the product.
Got the idea?