Monday (May 18th) was the 40th anniversary of the Mount St. Helens eruption and it reminded me of the ad below, that appeared in the print edition of the Wall Street Journal circa Feb 2017.
I don't know how it performed but it is an effective ad, that uses the classic story lead. I clipped it and put it in our swipe file. The company that ran it is Stauer, a Direct-to-Consumer jeweler. Below is the full text of the ad.
[headline] Famous Volcano Has Strange Effect on Women
[sub-head] Man and nature collaborate to create a glamorous green pendant guaranteed to rock her world!
On May 18, 1980, the once-slumbering Mount St. Helens erupted, sending a column of ash and smoke 80,000 feet into the atmosphere. It was one of nature's most impressive displays of power. But even more impressive was the secret the volcano had been hiding...
From that chaos, something beautiful emerged a spectacular new creation named Helenite. Produced from ancient minerals that erupted from inside of Mount St. Helens, this brilliant green creation has captured the attention of jewelry designers worldwide. But there are some things you need to understand before you bring home a "piece of the volcano."
Our Spirit Lake Helenite Pendant reverberates with a remarkable green fire that can become mesmerizing. The 4-carat helenite centerpiece displays a color and clarity that rivals some of history's greatest gems. You can blame the unique, concave cut for the extra brilliance.
Expertly polished facets don't let a single ray of light go to waste. And the .925 sterling silver bale is loaded with brilliant white stones. Our Spirit Lake Helenite Pendant honors the raw power of nature, and the glorious spirit of rejuvenation.
Reg: $379 Now: $99
I know, I know, the importance of storytelling in marketing has been beaten to death, but it still bears repeating as it is often resisted.
In our CRO consultancy work, after we have done all the fancy analytics, machine learning and statistical modelling, a good story can easily supersede whatever conversion gains we got. We are therefore always on the lookout for authentic stories that our clients can tell about their business.
Below are some good ones we’ve found over the years that were buried somewhere on the client’s website and rarely (if ever) seen by potential customers. Each is persuasive. 75 Year Old Miss Senior America
Context: They sell an expensive insole and a large portion of the customer base skews female and over 55. The reigning Miss Senior America was a customer and gave them a glowing testimonial--about the insole helping her finally being pain free after 25 years, after an injury suffered in a skiing accident. It was one of the key elements that contribute to a 91% revenue lift. A Teen’s Dog Dies ‘Cause He Had No Money for Vet. Years Later He Founds Pet Health Insurance Company
Company: pet health insurer
Context: The founder had a powerful story to tell about why he founded the company, but nowhere was it mentioned in their marketing collateral.
Baby Faces Life-threatening Difficulties, Father Founds Formula Company
Company: Baby Formula Maker
Context: More than 100 years ago, the founder worked with his family physician to develop a product for his son, who faced life-threatening feeding difficulties.
Today, his quest for better nutrition continues to drive our team to deliver products with an uncompromising commitment to quality and safety.
What story can you tell about your business?