If you’re a beverage
Maybe you’re a tea that’s going to help me self-actualize after one harrowing night on the toilet. In that case, you’re gonna want to use the word “tummy.” I just love that. It’s so much better than “belly,” which is reserved for pudgy babies, and Harry Styles singing about oral. “Tummy” glides off the tongue with the feminine fault-finding of a hangry high school dance coach. It reminds me that whatever I have going on sub-navel is both adorable, and in need of constant monitoring—like a puppy that continues to shit on the carpet.
Or, maybe you’re a hangover-proof alcohol that’s going to feel so indulgent despite your only having 63 calories per serving. Sixty-three? Those are airplane pretzel pouch numbers. Sold. You’ll want to make that “63” the centerpiece of your ad. It’s this kind of precise quantitative reporting that reminds me: I must always be accurate, down to the one's place, when accounting for each of the lil energies I do or do not insert into myself.
If you’re a lingerie
If I truly love myself, I should be inclined to wedge a few inches of synthetic fibers into my lower crevices now and then—I’m a goddess after all. Fill your captions with messages about how your groundbreaking “discovery” of sizes above triple-D makes your white male CEO a feminist visionary. Your brand’s all about body positivity, and by association, women’s rights in general. You're the Gloria Steinem of nylon boob cages. Susan Boob Anthony. Go ahead, post an RBG quote to your grid while you’re at it. Everyone knows she liked to rock a little lace from time to time.
If you’re the pan that does it all
I want a closeup of the most sensual olive oil drizzle you’ve ever seen. I’m a pioneer woman and I need a pan that can handle it all. Pancakes. Sautéing shit. Whacking my assailant in the face during that burglary I keep imagining. Sleep under my pillow and save my life you godforsaken aluminum mallet. “This pan is the only pan I need.” “This pan replaced everything else that I own.” If you’re not showing me exaggerated quotes written by your satisfied, yet underpaid, freelance employees I swear to god I’ll make eggs in the microwave.
If you’re a candle
Well, I’m buying a candle on the Internet, so I clearly have indiscriminate preferences when it comes to scent. All I really need is a label to show that I can keep up with understated Gen Z meme humor, but I’m mature and fancy enough to purchase my own candles. I plan on filling my home with the smell of my DOPE personality, but frankly, I need your sticker quips to do the talking.
If you’re none of the above
Maybe you’re a personal injury lawyer. Maybe you’re a wedding photographer. Maybe you’re a fast-food chain debuting your biggest and beefiest beef sandwich yet. When in doubt—even when you’re not in doubt—simply pay a dewy twenty-something to tell their camera how fantastic your product is. In the ethereal glow of their $39 ring light, they’ll appear just approachable enough to convince me we share a fundamental worldview, and thus, similar taste when it comes to hard seltzers and acne medications. A true no-brainer.
Why it (for sure) works
So, what makes this definitive guide so definitive? Easy. I don’t want any of your shit. I really don’t want your pan. I have enough pans. For this reason, it’s in my best interest that your advertisements continue to be exactly this offensive. Please, treat me like an insatiable child with no critical thinking capacity—it makes your product so easy to resist.
And yes, I’m gonna stick around for the shenanigans. If for no other reason than an addiction to the constant knowledge of what some of my friends, and all of my acquaintances, are doing right now, while I’m off doing—what was it I was doing? Oh yes, clicking through Instagram stories, becoming well-versed in all the CBD hand soaps available for purchase. Just keep in mind that while you think you know me, I believe I know you right back.
So keep showing me messages such as “how to clean your gut,” or “how to test your gut at home” or “how to come to terms with how absolutely fucked your gut is” (all of which I’ve read, by the way, from a successfully-utilized toilet). Just as long as you keep doing everything I hate, I can effortlessly do the one thing you hate: scroll merrily away, and refuse to buy a goddamn thing.