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Advertising the
Third Liberty Loan
Suggestions for Writers of Advertising
to Promote the Sale of Liberty Bonds

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Liberty Loan Committee
Second Federal Reserve District
120 Broadway, New ·Y ork

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LendHim
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TRADE MARK

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Advertising the Third Liberty Loan

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U RI G the first two Loan campaigns the Liberty
Loan Committee of the Second Federal Reserve
D istrict solicited copy and copy suggestions from
the advertising men of the district. This call m-e t with a
gratifying respons.t, putting an abundance of excellent
copy and a wealth of sugg~stions at . the disposal of the
Committee. To the ready cooperation of the ad . erti ing
men, and the time and thought which they o freely gay.e,
was due in large measure the success which attended the
publicity in this district during the first two Loan .
For the Third Liberty Loan it is hoped that they
will come forward again and in even g reater numbers to
take_their share in this patriotic serv~ce. The difficulties
incident to floating a thir,d loan, especially at this time and
for so stupendous a sum, are so much greater than were
encountered in either of the fir t two Loans that the cooperation of all experienced advertising men i essential
if the publicity is to have the variety and strength of appeal necessary to make the Loan an assured success.
Records ·of the use and popularity of each piece of
adve~tising copy were kept during ~e first two Loan
campaigns, and the -e xperience and information thus
gained have made it seem desirable to f or.mulate a more
definite adve(tising policy for the Third Loan than could
be done in the earlier Loans. In the belief that a general
policy, briefly outlined, will prove helpful in enabling
a_dvertising men to coordinate their efforts so that ~l will
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be working to the same purpose, the suggestions in this
pamphlet are offered. In this way the advertising ·campaign, it is thought, can be given a cumulative effect
otherwise impossible where so many and widely scattered
workers are involved.

Outline of Copy for the Two Previous Loans
In the first Loan we were faced with the problem of
selling $2,000,000,000 to a public wholly unacquainted
with the character of a bond. There were in the U.nited
States approximately 350,000 bondholders. The prime
necessity was to state and reiterate the A B C of bond investment, involving such questions as· security, interest,
conversion, etc.
The educational work done in the first · Loan was
cumulative. After the first Loan was successfully floated '
the papers continued to discuss bonds to some extent, and
the 4,000,000 new government bondholders were an educational force of the highest value. There probably was
not one of the 4,000,000 holders who did not talk about
his Liberty Bo~d to at least one other person. Consequently in the Second ·Loan it became possible to use less
copy abo~t the investment features and more about the
fundamental reason for the purchase of these securities,
namely, the fact that a liberal investment of money in
government bonds on the part of the public tends to protect the lives of our soldiers and sailors.
Consequently, at the beginning of the Second Loan,
while it was p.ossible to draw no absolute line, it was determined to put most of the emphasis upon various forms
of patriotic appeal, maintaining the steady undertone of
the investment appeal. A very close check was kept on
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the effect of this copy. There were several thousand demands for patriotic copy against a few hundred for the
most popular investment appeal. This tendency developed steadily to the very close of the Loan, when almost a
purely patriotic note was taken.

Copy for the Third Loan
As a re .ult. of the Second Liberty Loan campaign,
there are now 10,000,000 Government bondholders, and
probably 90% of An1erican know in a general way what
a Liberty Bond is. The Third Liberty Loan will be subscribed, therefore, if the peo.p le can be arou ed and stimulated to act as a unit. The consensus of .opinion of a·d vertising men seems to be that the best way to accomplish
this is not through the investm.e nt appeal, but ·b y emphasizing that the sale of Liberty Bonds is a necessary war
measure and that the purchase o·f bonds helps to win the
war and to save life. In order to bring about the subscrip
tion necessary for the success of the Third Loan in th.e
brief period of thirty days there must be created an artificially stimulated atmosphere of enthusiasm ,vhich will
make the individual say: "This appeals to me. There
are many reasons why_it is difficult for me to subscribe,
but with American victory and with hu_µian lives involved I will not hesitate. I'll go the limit.''
In spite of this, however, there is still a considerable
number of people who need to be reminded with regard
to the investment end of the question. Secretary , cAdoo
tells of an old man who wrote him a letter asking where
he should go to pay the interest he owed on the Liberty
Bond he had bought in the Second Loan. A steady flow
of brief, succinct investment copy d·u ring the Third Loan,
approximately not over 20'% of the copy run will unqu es,.
tionably stren.g then the advertising campaign.
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In this connection it has been suggested ·that the
phrase "Invest in Liberty Bonds" be u ed .m ore frequently
than "Buy Liberty Bonds,'' on the theory that a man in
the majority of cases biiys something for immediate use or
consumption-like a hat, or a loaf of bread,-and that the
use of the word "Invest'' will keep constantly and unobtrusively before the public mind the investment element.
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Ge.n eral Suggestions •
It is necessary to create and maintain throughout the
campaign an electric atmosphere of enth·usiasm, if ,ve are
to sweep the public off its feet into an over-subscription
of the Loan. The following sugge tions are a natural
development from the foregoing.
1. ·The fundamental reason for the sale of Liberty
Bonds is War. We must not talk of these bonds as if they
were an issue of Panama Canal bonds off·e red in time of
peace. In other words, "We ll),ust not talk in terms of
investment when we should be talking in terms of huma·n
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2....... Emphasize constantly and repeatedly the Victory element in the Third Loan. The first two Loans
enabled us to prepare for the struggle, to train· and equip
our soldiers, and to get them to France. The Third Loan
will give our soldiers in France the backing to send them
to Victory. For the same reason tHe p~hrase, "When the
War is won ,'' is preferable to "When theWar is ended.
During the first an.d second loan. drives ,ve had few men
in the trenches. In a sense the earlier loans were preparatory to action. Now our men are on the front in substantial numbers. In a very true sense therefore,. the third
loan is a "Fighting Loan.'' Its success will depend upon
our making our people at home realize the ·w ar and that
our own men are in the war.
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3. So-called "horror copy" should be very carefully used. It is believed that for this district the atmosphere that will prove most stimulative to the actual buying of bonds is an atmosphere of quiet and ·definite optimism and enthusiasm. Horror copy does not contribute •
to such an atmosphere. It tends to · centre the reader's
attention on the horror itself rather than to stimulate the
_buying impulse. Finally, to make the· average reader be.lieve at this time that .A merica is in any real danger of
the fate of Belgium and northern France is an impossibility. There are too many· miles of ocean between. us and
the fighting front, and the normal~American is too constitutionally optimistic. The invasion idea can be put
across only to a limited_extent..

4.. . In th·e first two Loans ·w e had a big story ·to tell
and not much "s,p ace" to tell it in. It w.as necessary to
tell all the facts and to tell fhem over and over again. In
the Third Loan the-aim is to run much shorter copy, letting each piece emphasize only one aspect of the Loan
appeal. By making each piece of copy a unit that can be
quickly ,g rasped, the advertising should gain immeasurably in punch and puiling power.

5. Individual objections to investing in the Loa
m.u st be recognized and the copy frankly directed to over
coming them. In this connection, however, the positive
appeal has in the past been found much more. effective
than the negative. Not to berate or lecture the public
but to stimulate it to contagious enthusias~ will undoubtedly, in the present circumstances, produce the best results.
6.. Make a definite appeal to women,-who are responsible -for a large proportion of the retail purchases
of the country. A heart appeal to them should have pa.r- 7

ticular force, because Liberty Bonds tend to save the lives
of their husbands, their sweethearts, their sons, their
children.
7. It is to be understoo.d that the plan _of campaign
is entirely elastic. The tone of the copy must often
change radically during the course of a campaign. A
sudden event in France may effect the whole copy tenor
and focus the appeal on a development not hitherto anticipated. The copy writer will, of course, be guided by
the general tone of the public, and in this connection items
in the daily ne\vs will. be found rich in copy suggestions
and the closest cooperation between news and advertising
bureaus is essential.
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Vital Phrases
While it is not the intentio~ to make this what might
be called a "slogan campaign,''· we believe that the adoption of a few standard phrases, which by repetition can be
burned into the hearts of the public, will prove a very
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great added element of strength. These p.hrases must, of
course, be supplemented throughout the copy by carefully
worded statements that will bring every possible impulse
and sentiment to bear on the purchase of bonds. But the
suggestive phrase that can be repeated over and over
again gives the advantage of making full use of a fundamental principle of publicity-repetition.
In this connection, the phrase "Lend him a hand,''
has been selected to sound the keynote of the first two
weeks of the campaign. This phrase has been strikingly
illustrated by a picture of an American soldier scrambling from a trench for a charge. His left h~nd is reaching up above his he~d, and is grasped by a hand, with
civilian cuff and coat sleeve showing, that reaches down
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to help him up ''over the top." Thi phrase and picture
. bring the civilian right into the trenches and graphically
illustrate the outstanding, immediate purpose of the
Loan, the effective backing of our army in France.
For the last two weeks of the campaign the phrase
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Liberty Bonds
SAVE LIVES-THE LIVES ·O F OUR OWN SO'
has been selected to sound the keynote. This phrase is
the logical development of . that featured du.ring the first
two weeks. If we give our boys in the trenches a handwith guns and shells and all ·m ann~r of supplies-·w e protect them and we help then1 to win the war soon,e r; we
save lives. "T.h e lives of our own son . " bring the responsibility intimately home to every Amer ican.
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Other phrases that have .been suggested are:

Save more lives-Buy more bonds.
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While your money fights the .Kaiser, let your
money work for you.
Prepare to do your ALL; less will be too little;
Buy, etc.
Invest in Victory-the Third Liberty Loa·n.
Bring them home VICTORIOUS-Buy, etc.
and similar phrases involving the idea of Victory, as "The
Sure Road to Victory-the Third Liberty Loan" and
''Hasten the Day of Victory."
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Ad.d itional slogans of this nature ,vj ll be welcomed
b the Advertising Bureau of the Liberty Loan Committee. Besides ·the use of a few of these repeatedly in advertising copy as outlined abo:ve, there ,vill of course be
a call for such slogans for ·use on letterheads posters and
other print,e d .m atter.
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Specific DiJliculties
There are a number of features which make the rais-·
ing of the Third Liberty Loan a far more serious task
than was faced in either of the previous Loans.. Properly
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handled,. however, these difficulties may be made elements
of strength in the copy appeal.

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1. The raising of billions is in itself
undertaking.

a stup6ndous

(a) The very size of the Loan, however, can
prove a pow erful incentive to stimulate the public
to the ex-tt·aordi.n ary effort necessary for success.
( b) Th e dish ea1·tening effec on Germany ·o f
. • the" successful
floating of so large- a Loan and the cor.

responding encouragement which such a success will
give to England and F1·ance, is a further incenti e
which lends i tself to copy use.

2. The constant reiteration of peace talk in the
. papers and on the street is a serious obstacle to the success of th.e Loan. PeopJe cannot pe made to give their
whole-hearted support if they belie e that peace is but
a few weeks or a few months off.

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(a) Much of t his peace talk is undoubtedly insidious G e1.,,-nan propaganda. This is probably true
of the rumors of popular unr·e st oming from Germany . Germany ,o uld like .. to make the Ameriean
p. ople think that peace wa~ near at hand so that
A m erica would slacken her war efforts and' give Germany a possible opportunity to d ef eat E -n gland and
France. There is a splendid opportunity for ·a dvertising copy to show- this, to show t hat Germany does
not want peace, that the one road to a permanent
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peace is the defeat of the German armies, and that •
the Thi-rd .L iberty Loan will make this possible . .We
must "lick or be licked."

• 3. There is dissatisfaction throu.g hout the counfry
with the regolat~ng of American b·usiness an.d agriculture
and this militates against a ready and enthl!siastic support
of Government Loans.
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(a) · Copy to J/i,o w that these are necessary mea·-·
sures of a nation at war, and tlzat the sacriff es of the
man at home are not to be compare.d with those of the
man in the trenches will prove helpful here. As a
nation we do not realize· yet tlzat we are at war and
some of the adver.tising copy may be .P rofitably de-· _
·v oted t "selling the war" to the American people.

( b) Enthusiastic copy based on ·w hat America
has already achieved in the way of war preparation
.a nd. war service-and it is no inconsiderable achievement--will serve to increase and encourage the support of the Loan.
4.. The great n.e ed is to 'b ring home to every American that the success of the Loan is his individual responsibility.. There is no real lack of patriotism, but in view
of the rise in the cost of living and the unsatisfactory con-·
ditions in many lines of business, there is a tendency on
. the-part of the individual, especially if he subscribed to
the first two Loans, to feel that for the time being he has
do~e his share and that he will postpone further action :
until future loans. Th.e following types of appeal may
help in dti:ving home the idea that everybody must support the Third Loan.
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(a) The purposes which the Liberty Loan
se-rves are based as much on the conservation of
"goods and services'1 as upo.n the Gov£rnment' s need
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for money. That is, the Government urgently needs
the labor and materials which are released when the
individiial saves money to invest in bonds instead of
spending it for his personal satisfaction. That the
Government may meet these imperative needs without delay, it becomes the responsibility of every citizen to suppo1·t the Loan and so rel ase labor and materials. This w ar is a war of national resources and
if America is to win every man and every woman
must contribute his share to the national strength.
( b) Th e Third Liberty Loan means Victory
and the saving of precious Ameri can lives. Every
man should pay his share in the price of Victory.
( c) The Governm-e nt' s need is for money now,
not in a few months, and the time for every man to
aci is now. America must act quickly if she is to
hearten and to give effective supp ort to an embattled
England and France.

Investment Copy
It is to be remembered that the investment copy in
this Loan wil omprise probably not more than 20% of
the copy run, but there are certain investment aspects
that may profitably be treated in this class of ·copy. It
must always be k~pt in mind, however, that such C?PY
should be as simple, direct, and appealing as it is possible
to make it.
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any people do not yet realize that the buying.
of Liberty Bonds is possible for people in moderate circumstance . Copy that will show simply and strikingly
how they can buy bonds on the installment plan, or by borrowing money from their bank for the purpose, has a use
if effectively done.
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2. The fact that Liberty Bonds of th,e first two issues are now selling below par will prove a deterrent f actor to some investors. Striking copy that will s}low that
this is a normal condition of war times and that the bonds
will undoubtedly increase in value when peace is declared, probably going above par, will prove .helpful in
meeting this objection.
3,. Copy may. be written to show that the Liber~
Loan is an insurance for good business after the war. If
America wins, American business may look forward to
one of the ·most prosperous times in the history of the
nation. German victory would mean business chaos.
4. The Government must have the money to carry
on this war effectively, and if this money is not rai sed by
loan it must be raised by taxes.

5. The money raised in the Third Loan ·w ill be
spent . in. this country and will
. contribute directly to the
prosperity of American business and American labor.
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Copy Should be Illustrated
The consensus of opinion among advertising men
seems to be that Loan advertisements should carry illustrations much more generally in this ·campaign than was
advisable in the previous Loans. At that time we had .
no soldiers in the trenches, and illustrators were of necessity obliged to fall back on. allegorical figures :such as
Democracy, Justice_, the Statue of .L iberty, and U ncle
Sam. Now that ·w e have an army in France and consequently a splendid opportunity for pictures of action,
practically every advertisement should be illustrated_.
Pictures introducing soldiers or sailors, scenes of action
on land and sea, should be introduced wherever they are
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appropriate to the copy. Allegorical figures should almost never be used.
Together, the illustration and the caption should flash
the story of an advertisement so that it-will get acr?ss
at a glance, even w·h en the copy is not carefully read and
analyzed: The need is for illustrations so full of action
and human interest, illustrations which so dominate the •
page, that they cannot fail to catch the reader's eye and .
hold his attention until he has unconsciously sta.r ted to
read the copy. There is _a general belief that for Loan
illustrations thei:e should be a strong contrasting of blacks
and whites, with as little detail as possible, leaving out
rather than putting in lines. Wherever detail or mass is
necessary tq carry the thought, it sh uld be kept in light
mass or sl1adowy outline.

Worth Fighting For

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Your Bond
May Bring
Him Home
• l .n Safety

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A of France.

are n
on the ba .
fron
. an mu t fall; ho man dep nd
upon u who remain. safel .a home:
A single Liberty Bond will help to save a soldier's life, YO.UR
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soldier·'s life, and bring him home to you-alive and victorious.
LIBERTY LOAN C.OMMT'E•TEE
SECOND 'BEDER.AL RESERVE .D ISTlUCT

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One
Hundred Million
Americans Must
Enlist To Win
The War

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Be one of the hundred million Americans to help win
the war.
Plan to bu)' all the bond you can.
This is your part and no one else can do it for )Tou.
Get into the fight!

Join the crowd!

Do it Now!

Invest in Liberty Bonds.
LIBERTY LOAN COMMITTEE
SECOND FEDERAL RESERVE DISTRICT