Advertising Women's Wearables
( Originally Published 1902 )
She looks for style.
Every woman wants this trinity of features in her dress, skirt, waist, or whatever article of wear she may be looking for.
Swing the three features in your advertising; swing them in with a grace that shows your pen is influenced by the style; swing them in with a conviction that shows your pen is influenced by the service; swing them in with a force that shows your pen is influenced by the low price.
Again let me speak of style. Without style a garment is nothing in the eyes of any self-respecting woman. Some great writer—pardon the omission of the name; it's not here recallable—said that the nearest approach to heaven on this earthly sphere is experienced by the woman happy in the knowledge that she is well gowned. And it is hardly necessary to say that the gown must be stylish.
Dame Fashion is erratic—she has many a twist and turn in the trail of her " creations "—but every woman feels it her bounden duty to follow fashion's most sinuous and tortuous path, and woe be to the merchant who gets a reputation for being behind the times. He must keep up in the procession of style, even if he lags with service and price.
Naturally his advertising must fittingly tell the tale of his noble effort to follow fashion's footsteps, and the advertising man should make a study of the garments.
And it is quite a study—for a man. But it pays—therefore should be done.
Semi-annually there comes to the store an influx of new styles. They sweep out old fashions as do waves of the sea sweep out impressions on the sands. Tell all about the new styles—how they are different from old styles—whether they originated in New York, London, Paris, Berlin or Vienna whether they are the creations of Worth, Rouff, Felix, Robinson or whoever the famous originator may be. This adds an element of truth as to the exclusiveness of the garments.
With popular-priced and easy-priced garments it is considered good policy to tell how a certain enterprising manufacturer secured an advance sample of a most stylish garment and made up a lot to go at a price so far below what the original garment sells for as is a fifty-cent piece below a silver dollar. Yet the latter garments lost none of the grace, distinctiveness and worth possessed by the original.
And it frequently happens, according to the ads of many cloak concerns, that the manufacturer, in the course of his operations, became embarrassed for want of filthy lucre, " and our buyer, being on the spot with spot cash, secured the entire lot at a price which enables us to offer the most," etc., etc., ad infinitum, a page full, which so stirs up the feminine portion of the town, city or borough, that they all descend upon the store, and each and every one secures a garment of style, of worth, of service, at a price that causes competition to retire into the woods and go into executive session with itself.