I’m a compulsive editor. And I don’t mean just editing copy for my clients. Copy everywhere–billboards, bus shelters, bus panels, the streaming video ad panels at the new Whole Foods checkout. I can’t open my own published novel without editing it, and I rewrote that sucker five times.
Standing in line at my credit union Patelco this morning, I was editing again. Patelco is running a competitive campaign to get burned and disenfranchised bank customers to switch to Patelco.
Posters, brochures and other materials encourage people to “Break up With Your Bank.” The creative centers around handwritten “Dear John” notes in which the “customer” tells their bank why they’re leaving, and proclaims their right to a “healthier relationship.” The rest of the copy in the ads is the usual financial jargon about rates and loans. But the Dear John notes (in red pen to add to the drama of the “breakup”) are well-done. I didn’t edit a single word.
I did however, mentally rearrange the graphics (the Dear John notes should be more prominent to draw people’s attention immediately) and shrink the typeface here, enlarge it there. I was about put on my glasses so I could edit the boilerplate legalese when the teller motioned she was ready to take my deposit.
I admit it–I have a problem.