Advertising is greater than html

What’s the big idea?

“I have discovered the most exciting, the most arduous literary form of all, the most difficult to master, the most pregnant in curious possibilities. I mean the advertisement is far easier to write ten passably effective sonnets, good enough to take in the not too inquiring critic, than one effective advertisement that will take in a few thousand of the uncritical buying public.”
Aldous Huxley

The reason Aldous Huxley had so much trouble writing an ad is because he wasn’t an advertising writer. Advertising happens in a contrived context and has highly technical production and creative demands, not to mention withering costs associated with failure.

All advertising works for the simple reason that someone in the target market for an advertised product is interested in messages about that product, and go about their day with their antenna raised looking for information about their area of interest. Once a purchasing decision is made the item comes off the daily agenda.

Scientific Advertising follows a simple, time-proven, rigorous strategy; a bit like chess, with infinite possibilities. Machiavellian in it’s ruthless practicality, the aim of Scientific Advertising is that not one penny is wasted in an advertising budget.

Rather than having become irrelevant in the information age the practical procedures of experimentation, tracking and scale are top of the mind in measuring the Net Profit divided by Owner’s equity of advertising budgets on social networks.

A name is greaterthanhtml. If the advertising is important then so is brand naming.

The relationship between advertising and the brand name is like the relationship between electricity and magnetism, when they are happily married, it is a powerful thing.

A word paints a thousand pictures. Try it for yourself: what images come to mind when you hear the word “capital?” Scientific Advertising applies to brand names; the importance of naming; and proven strategies to follow when creating a name.

Imagine yourself in a crowded room full of gesticulating people all trying to catch the attention of a disinterested viewer. The only way to be seen is to get some distance between yourself and the others in the room. In advertising terms this is called “White Space”. White Space works. This concept applies in any media.

Logos and brand names created by greaterthanhtml

Above: A selection of brandnames and logos created by greaterthanhtml.

white space allows you to stand out from the crowd

For example, in a busy consumer trade show environment the more crowded the display in your exhibit the more it blends with everything else.

David Ogilvy and common sense say consumers do not buy a publication to read the ads. Advertising is not the place to be shy, nor is it the place to look like an ad,-- Ogilvy recommended making your ads look like editorial to gull the consumer into reading the ad without considering the message as an advertising proposition. Today this is called “Branded Content.”

Advertisers follow fashions for periods when they will all use the same typefaces or graphics, for instance, in 2009, the plethora of imitators spawned by the iPod colour silhouettes or the ubiquity of the Grunge+Victorian Flourish or The Tattoo school of graphic design. Me Too Advertisers. This is a waste.

If you have heard it before don't write it down, it's a cliché the same applies if you have seen it before. It is a cliché. Don't reproduce it in your advertising. Why? The answer lies in another question: what is the key message the ad is to convey? Does using a cliché successfully convey that message? How effective is the advertisement as a tool?

A few more clichés.

Ads do one thing well. Two things less well. More than that poorly. Simplicity is the sanctuary in the wasteland. In mass print media, newspaper, FSI and magazine, all around you are hollering and gesticulating in an effort to get their message across. Cacophony.

Don’t be generic. Don’t be unique. Be different. Don’t stand out from the crowd, avoid crowds altogether.

greaterthanhtml looks forward to hearing from you. You can contact us by phone at 780 722 8763 or email

Advertising samples from the greaterthanhtml archives

Whitewater Communications - Capilano College

Capilano University Great Teaching ad

This ad was used as a support for Capilano College’s campaign to acquire university status. It uses a satellite photo to illustrate the wide geographic area that Cap College was serving.

Whitewater Communications - Capilano College

Capilano College for Whitewater Communications Capilano College for Whitewater Communications Capilano College for Whitewater Communications

Capilano Community College and other unaccredited post secondary institutions were blindsided by provincial politics when the government moved to award degree-granting University status to a number of institutions without considering Capilano.

Cap College quickly mounted a full page newspaper campaign to garner support for their campaign to acquire University status.

This series of ads grew over time and were not planned as a campaign to start but with a clear design standard a family resemblance between each ad in the series helped propel the campaign to success and now Capilano College is known as Capilano U.

Andersons Group of Restaurants - The Kettle of Fish

The Kettle of Fish

Postcard dropped to businesses in the area of the restaurant to promote the fast lunch for busy executives. The restaurant has a reputation for fine dining and long preparation times which was impacting their lunch business.

There were matching street banners produced to leverage the awareness garnered by the postcard campaign.

This successful campaign ran for a number of years.

Banded Peak Challenge

Banded Peak Challenge Easter Seals Alberta Pro-bono

The Banded Peak Challenge is a grassroots event held annually in Kananaskis Country, Alberta. The purpose of the event is to raise funds for special needs children to attend an Easter Seals summer camp.

Around 200 sponsored participants hike and bike to the top of Banded Peak, one of the Rockies' 11,000 footers.

The participants come from the Calgary area.

This black and white newspaper ad ran in community papers in the Calgary area.

The project included outdoor, posters, t-shirts brochures.

Photography by Tom Walker.

Whitewater Communications - Capilano College

Capilano University bus shelter for Whitewater Communications

Bus shelter backlit ad to support the Capilano College university accreditation campaign.

Judy Gale Inc. - Huntington West.

Huntington West for Judy Gale Inc. Huntington West for Judy Gale Inc. Huntington West for Judy Gale Inc. Huntington West for Judy Gale Inc. Huntington West for Judy Gale Inc.

Newspaper campaign for sales of luxury high rise condominium.

The campaign presented the milieu of the target market in a series of upscale New Yorker-style cartoons.

Support material included a sales presentation folder with an animal theme and graphics. The logo was a leaping deer and supporting typography.

Nathan Smith Law

Nathan Smith Law magazine Nathan Smith Law trade publication appointment ad Nathan Smith Law trade publication ad

Series of trade publication ads to promote the expertise of Nathan Smith Law as a medical malpractice expert to other lawyers.

The legal community is already familiar with the firm from the work of the principal. The ads promoted the personalities of the firm as the unique sales proposition of the company.

Copywriting by Dick Paetzke. Photography by Redfern Photographics.

Andersons Group of Restaurants

Andersons Group of Restaurants double half page double truck Wedding Bells magazine ad

Double half page double truck magazine advertising for Andersons Group of Restaurants wedding parties.

Microsoft Canada

MICROSOFT Software Asset Management

Full page magazine ad for Microsoft Canada anti-piracy awareness.

Whitewater Communications - The Nature Trust

Nature Trust newspaper filler ads

Series of filler ads for The Nature Trust. These ads have been running for a number of years in The Vancouver Sun and Province.

IMPACT Magazine

IMPACT Magazine Health Club Feature

Full page ad in IMPACT Magazine to promote the Health Club Feature to Calgary health clubs and facilities.

IMPACT Magazine

IMPACT Magazine Health Club Feature

Full page ad in IMPACT Magazine to promote the Race Source Guide Feature to Calgary health clubs and facilities.

National Aboriginal Day

Pro-bono magazine ad for National Aboriginal Day

Full page magazine ad pro-bono to promote awareness of National Aboriginal Day events on June 21.


Seawalk Newspaper

Newspaper advertising for False Creek condominium development Seawalk.

Roger Kibble and Associates - MJB Coffee

Coupon ad for MJB Coffee

Here it is. Scientific Advertising. Full page magazine ad for MJB Coffee to promote a discount coupon.

Photography by Ken Meyer. Copy by Roger Kibble.

Roger Kibble and Associates - AMC Jeep Renault Dealers Association of BC.

AMC Jeep Renault Dealers AMC Jeep Renault Dealers

Newspaper slugs for co-op advertising program for AMC Jeep Renault dealers in B.C.

Copy by Roger Kibble. Photography by Delores Baswick.

Green and Huckvale Ltd. - New Home Warranty Program

News Home Warranty Program full page newspaper

Full page newspaper ad for the New Home Warranty Program members. Copy by Joan Green.

Winner of an award for typography from the Graphic Designers of Canada, B.C. Chapter. There are hundreds of business names set around the large headline. Typesetting by Pola Graphics.

Argon Security Technologies
Proxy Wireless Surveillance

Design and production of corporate communications materials.

Creative Process - Le Social

Le Social Restobar and Grill

Le Social Restobar and Grill is housed in a Montreal heritage mansion.

The location previously housed an upscale restaurant. The reputation of the previous business impacts the perception of the market which the current management needs to change.

Le Social caters to the McGill University students from the campus adjacent.

The mansion itself became the focus of the advertising to suggest a youthful, fun atmosphere.

Mason Sewing Machines
Mason Sewing Machines

Art direction and production of magazine advertising.

Judy Gale Inc. - CREO Products

CREO Products optical tape recorder

CREO Products optical tape recorder was the first entry into the terabyte storage category, at a time when floppy discs were available in 5.5" or 2.25" sizes holding 800k of data. The very idea of a terbyte was the domain of science fiction.

The WORM drive used a series of prisms, mirrors and lenses to write a byte of (eight) dots across the width of the tape. If there was a dot in the matrix it represented a one, a missing dot represented a zero.

Whitewater Communications - Scott Paper

FSI for Scott Paper

Double truck FSI for Scott Paper to promote the Scott Tournament of Hearts Canadian Womens' Curling Championships.

Scott Paper FSI

The campaign also comprised as Full Page FSI and each creative was completed in English and French.

Scott Paper full page FSI

Full page FSI for Scott Paper coupon.

Emcee Squared - BC Soccer Association
BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications BC Soccer Association, MC2 Communications