Copywriting award-winners

These gems from my portfolio won many creative awards, a few years ago now.


Equal Exchange deserve a round of applause. They bring the world’s finest organic and fair trade products to the UK. Good Creative gave them the design solution for their packaging range of 67 products and I supplied the words. The tongue-in-cheek copy talks frankly to the consumer, telling the story about each product’s benefits. Each packet / jar/ bottle has unique copy – front, back and sides. The packaging range won a GOLD DBA.

26 EE Equal Exchange_061 Equal Exchange_062

Please look below the other images to read all the packaging copy for their delicious Earl Grey Tea

Sample copy – Earl Grey Tea

(Front of packet)

Our fair trade is an honest and EQUAL EXCHANGE. You enjoy the world’s finest organic and natural products, the farmer gets a better life. Simple really, but that’s why our…


(Back of packet)

Our Earl Grey lords it over the rest with a superior blend of Darjeeling and North Indian traditional tea. We use pure oil of bergamot for a very refreshing cuppa. And because it’s organic, there are no nasty chemicals. But the goodness doesn’t stop there. When you buy this packet you’re empowering people like the small farmers in Darjeeling who grow this delicious tea – they took over the abandoned Mineral Springs Garden and created the Sanjukta Vikas Co-operative, high in the Himalayas. Fair trade doesn’t get any fairer than this.
Use boiling water and one teabag for every person. Steep from 3 to 5 minutes. Add a splash of milk or not. Enjoy!

You’re not just buying something utterly delicious. You’re making a big difference to small farmers who are vulnerable to unjust economics. They grow their gorgeous food by working in harmony with nature. And we work in harmony with them, giving them a sustainable way of life. Wherever it’s do-able, we invest even more in communities by packing the food where it’s grown. Nearly all our range is organic, and we’re working hard to sort the rest. Plus we’ve pioneered many major Organic Fairtrade world-firsts. There’s heaps more to tell you. To find out more, and to tell us what you think, go to:

Like this? Try out other speciality teas: Assam, Masala Chai, Darjeeling & Breakfast Blend.

Screen Shot 2019-03-20 at 21.22.53



How do you revive a mothballed brand worldwide on a tiny budget? For the pitch research, way back in 1999 before Ardbeg bottles re-appeared in shops, Dave Mullen and I went to Islay. There, talking to the man behind the Ileach, I stumbled across the curious fact that this tiny windy island with more sheep than people had over 140 committees. I thought we should give them another one: The Ardbeg Committee. Back at Oneagency, Dave and I devised a consumer direct marketing campaign. I invented a tone of voice that was as distinctive and downright quirky as Islay and the brand; Dave’s art direction was probably the best I’ve ever seen. Each Committee mailing built the relationship with a unique creative solution. Within just two years of launch, Ardbeg had become established as a measurable global brand. Committee members now inundate the Distillery with emails, phone calls and visits – and are happy to pay a premium for this niche brand. Our first mailings went on to win 7 Gold awards, nationally and internationally, and more besides. I was thrilled to win Gold for Copy. See more about my copy for Ardbeg in another blog.

Ardbeg ‘Spirit Level’ mailing to committee members (shown above)

1976 Ardbeg is a rare vintage with an especially well balanced taste. Emphasising this USP, the subtle concept features a die-cut ‘spirit’ level bubble and the headline beneath says, ‘All the elements in perfect balance’. The leaflet front cover opens to reveal that the ‘spirit’ you can see through the die-cut is, of course, Ardbeg. The body copy explained that only one bottle per member was permitted. The call-to-action was the softest possible, eliciting a 73% response rate:

Roinnan t-uisge – beatha

(In pain English: the problem of dividing the whisky)



Imagine this landing on your doormat: an envelope that’s so crumpled, it looks like it was rescued from the bin. This striking concept won the pitch and a DMA award in the Charity category – one that is notoriously difficult to win. 

Shelter env

The pitch brief was to communicate to donors that Shelter Scotland still has an important role now that Scotland has its own parliament. My research revealed that a new green paper on housing was about to be prepared – the first for 23 years and a potentially vital opportunity to tackle the causes of homelessness. Our creative solution communicated that ‘To waste this opportunity would be criminal’, with a deliberately crumpled outer envelope and copy that developed this idea. The letter copy shown in the sample is targeted at existing donors, so it could be assumed that the reader cares enough about Shelter’s work to have donated in the past. The creative solution was Highly Commended by the DMA.

Shelter letter

Sample letter copy 


We must not throw away this chance to transform the lives of homeless people.

Dear Mr Sample,

As I know you really care about what happens to people who are forced to live in appalling damp homes or to sleep rough on the streets, I’m sure you will want to hear about the extremely important events taking place right now at the Scottish parliament.

A consultation paper is about to be published which is preparing the way for Scotland’s new Housing Bill this Autumn. It will include the biggest piece of homelessness legislation for 23 years; a triumph for everyone who has tirelessly campaigned for politicians to transform the lives of homeless people. It’s also a triumph that nearly every proposal that Shelter Scotland recommended for tackling homelessness will be incorporated.

At long last, we can have real hope that the new Parliament could reverse the downward spiral of Scotland’s housing system and improve the quality of life for thousands of men, women and children in Scotland.

But without extra funding, the new legislation will not achieve its full potential.

However, this crucial opportunity for change could be completely wasted: that’s why we crumpled up this letter before we sent it, to bring to life this vitally important point.

The government MUST commit the necessary funds in the current Comprehensive Spending Review, otherwise this new Bill will hardly change a thing.

Make no mistake, for many people in the future this could mean the difference between life and death.

After decades of slashed housing budgets, the amount of money required is substantial. It is estimated that, in addition to the resources required to implement the Housing Bill, £10 billion is needed for repairs and improvements to bring homes up to decent modern standards. So at this time our campaigns team is putting every effort into lobbying the government about the content of the Bill and to commit the maximum budget available to housing.



Writing annual reports is usually just an editing process. The end result reads smoothly and authoritatively. Other times it can involve interviewing key people and writing on their behalf from scratch. This annual report for Barrs Soft Drinks won a Gold DBA.

Design by Navy Blue




This unusual solution for a B2B mailing won two international awards for creativity and effectiveness. It was part of an ongoing campaign for Atlantic Telecom. The brief was to take the proposition, “You shouldn’t be managing your own telecommunications”, and turn it into a mailing that would get noticed on a Director’s desk. Our simple and relevant solution was to send the target an actual duster with copy printed on it – cheap and so unusual, the response far exceeded the client’s targets.

Atlantic duster_083

Sample copy


Some jobs are best left to others.

(Reverse of duster)

Bet dashing round the office with a duster isn’t what you do best. Ditto, for managing your own telecommunications. It’s time-consuming, fiddly and perhaps not the most cost-effective way to do it. Talk to Atlantic Logicall instead. We’ll manage every aspect of your telecommunications for you, increasing your efficiency and reducing costs. Give us a call on…..

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