Marketing Message Quiz: See How Many You Know

marketingRemember your junior year in high school English when you learned there were only 13 original plots and everything else became a variation of one of the original 13?

Well, the same is true in marketing. Most sales pitches, ads and even blog headlines reflect a time-honored formula. Famous New York ad man, Gene Schwartz devised the following 10 formulas.

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Can you match the formula to the headline example?

1. Numbered lists
2. How-to headlines
3. Secrets
4. Questions
5. Reasons why
6. The big promise
7. Exotic or foreign reference
8. Time reference
9. The “now” headline
10. The “don’t pay until” headline


a. Revealed at Last, Secrets to Boosting Site Traffic
b. How Social Media Can Make Your Brand Stand Out
c. One Day with ASJ Partners Proves Inbound Marketing Works
d. 11 Reasons You Need a Branded Web Site
e. Now—Take Advantage of Google+
f. Don’t Pay One Cent Until You’ve Seen This
g. Are You Taking Advantage of Mobile Applications?
h. Why Your Blog Shouldn’t Be a Sales Pitch
i. You Can Be A Rock Star Marketer with These Tips
j. Technology Experts in Asia Premiere Coding Shortcuts

So how did you do?

The answers:

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Steve Isenberg

Steve Isenberg
Steve Isenberg is president of ASJ Partners, a marketing agency for the staffing industry. He can be reached at

Steve Isenberg

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