By the numbers.

More memorable and meaningful than puffery.

Headlines and sig lines (or strap lines) can be the most memorable part of ads. But all too often they're meaningless fluff. "Finest," "Best," "Most trusted," "Best value" and others of that vague ilk are verbal mush without any distinctive hook to aid recall. One tremendous mnemonic aid is to quantify the claim with a hard number. Consider these:

"This bread is very nutritious." or "Builds strong bodies 12 ways." No contest which would be remembered. (The Wonder Bread slogan began as eight ways in the 1930s and grew to twelve ways in the 1950s.) As an aside, Wonder Bread built strong bodies by throwing a couple of vitamin enrichment tablets about the size of a hockey puck into the dough to replace nutrients removed in processing.

"This fine automobile is really quiet." or "At 60 miles an hour the loudest noise in the new Rolls Royce comes from the electric clock," the 1958 Ogilvy classic.

How about: "We condense a lot of tomatoes to make out tomato paste," or "Who put eight, great tomatoes in that little bitty can?" Stan Freberg's wonderful radio jingle. The ending was a thing of beauty: "You know who. You know who. You know who, In case you don't, it was Contadina." That last sentence was the only spoken part of the spot, and the final word was the only mention of the brand. That broke a lot of rules, but it got tremendous recall, and built the Contadina brand.