Credit Card Copy

I am Generation Forward.
I look not backward, but forward.
I reject the selfish ways of the past.
The environment, the economy, our very security…
they’re the consequences of people not thinking about consequences.
The world I’m inheriting makes me different.
I’m not afraid of what might happen, but energized by what could happen.
For my generation, forward isn’t just a word.
It’s a way of life.
I believe actions speak louder than words.
I believe in the power of making good visible.
I believe in sharing the wealth, spreading the peace, helping the
unfortunate, recycling, alternative energy sources, exercise, eating
healthy, giving back, spending wisely and setting a good example.
I believe that if bad things happen when I do bad,
good things should happen when I do good.
I believe in good design, keeping my word, paying on time, using the
internet instead of paper and fiscal responsibility.
I am Generation Forward.
I’m the first generation to have a credit card named after me.
Imagine! A credit card that rewards you for doing the right thing.
I am Generation Forward.
I am different and I’ve got a card to prove it.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. whoa. at first i thought this was THE DAVID BURN MANIFESTO … then it turned into an ad. from citibank, no less.

  2. That’s funny, Todd. Normally, I’m all for poetic expressions, wherever one might encounter them. But poetry in the employ of Citibank kind of rubs me wrong.

  3. What if selling an ad campaign required a rousing anthem to sell the idea?
    What if short sentences held your attention easily?
    What if the ad agency started a creative presentation by asking you, the client, a question that has nothing to do with your product or service?
    What if you don’t really care about the answer, but the writing is really sincere and everyone else is paying attention so you’re forced to sit and look on thoughtfully?
    About here, you’re hit with the idea. It might be the tagline.
    It’s simplicity, sold with shortness. It’s wrong, but it’s starting to feel right.
    After all, this anthem could be used word-for-word in an internal sales meeting.
    It makes you feel good about being a marketing director or CMO or Regional Sales Rep. It makes doing what you do seem connected to something…bigger.
    And maybe this is exactly the feeling you want your consumers to feel.
    And maybe those consumers have been waiting to feel this way about your product or service.
    And maybe there’s magic in three sentence combinations that all start the same way.
    Maybe there IS.
    So let’s wrap it up with a sentence that begins with “So let’s” and not ask any more questions.
    Let’s give the copywriter something to do while the art directors and studio put the boards together.
    Let’s get on our knees and suck off this client and make him feel like the big boy in the room.
    Let’s do it without closing our eyes.
    Because it’s not an ad, but we better fucking sell something this time.
    It’s a MANIFESTO.