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How I wrote a better copy than BR's inhouse copywriters?

Breakdown and Rewriting BR's copy

Hello, I just woke up from a solid eight-hour sleep and have the perfect energy to start my Monday morning (you’ll be reading this on Wednesday.)

How is 2024 treating you so far? Mine has been pretty plain. The first 4-5 days were slower than usual. I only picked up the pace a couple of days ago and am now operating on my usual wavelength.

Ugh, where are my manners? Happy New Year! ♥️

I hope you get all the success, peace, and love you deserve.

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Okay soo…

What’s new?

If you have been a reader for over three months, you know I usually present case studies of my work or a breakdown of the systems I follow, along with the guest emails every Friday and some short, private hacks.

This year, I want to introduce something new: Breakdown and Rewriting of Popular Brand Copies

There are a bunch of reasons I chose to do this:

Breaking down is easier. Rewriting is hard.

Breakdown is a skill of its own. It’s not a joke to reverse engineer other writer’s thinking and form a generalized hypothesis to make all writers understand the process.


I am trying to say: It’s easier to point out a line, a word choice, a story structure, etc., and say, “oh, this part could have been better.”

But it’s damn hard to work on the pointed-out mistake yourself and rewrite a better version.

I am guilty of this too.

A month ago, I was breaking down and rewriting Storia’s copy, a brand that makes flavoured drinks. Within five seconds I could analyze the copy and say, “the transition between the second and the third line is bad.”

But when I started rewriting it, I understood why the writer couldn’t add a smooth transition—there was no space for it. The product packaging allowed only 30-35 words and the writer put all the information they could in the best way possible.

So, instead of building a smooth transition, I combined both sentences, eliminating the need for transition. I made sure to not lose information or overcrowd the sentence with too many benefits.

I would have never understood this if I had not tried to rewrite it.

So let me rephrase what I told earlier:

Breakdown is not easy

Rewriting is hard

Rewriting a better version takes insane skill

Speaking of skill, here is my second reason

I am gonna pick top brands. Some incredible copywriters work for these brands. It is safe to assume these are some of the best in the business.

…and I want to beat their copy.

My ideology is simple. I have the copies written by the best copywriters. If I want my skills to surpass them, I have to write better copies than them.

“You wrote a spectacular copy. Let me write a better version,” is how I think.

The third, but of course not the last reason is: YOU

  • I want to show you how I work and operate—right from the process to the end result so you’ll have complete access to my technique

  • Popular brands are easy to relate to. If I share their stories, break them down for you, and then rewrite; it will be easier and fun to understand

Little Warning from Experience

Before I brought the concept of rewriting to Cognition, I tested it on social media to check if my readers would want this from me.

One thing I can say from feedback (if you want to practice this exercise in public) is rewriting invites criticism.

A few folks commented or messaged me, telling the original version was better than the one I rewrote. Plus, I am inviting more trouble by saying things like “I will write a better copy than the original” or “I will beat the top copywriters.”

But that’s the fun part. It only helps me improve.

Addressing the elephant in the room…

Breaking Down and rewriting Baskin Robbins’ copy

I ordered Mississippi Mud Roll a few weeks ago. Besides BR's delicious cake, their delight-ful (pun intended) copy stood out for me:

I analyzed the copy in detail to notice what BR did right. I have found few noteworthy points:


Unlike most copies I've been dissecting lately, BR's copy is visually eye-catching. For other brands, there were times I had to search the packaging to find the copy, but the design here is so good that it immediately grabbed my attention.

I felt, "Oh, there is something written. Let me checkout."

Writing Style:

I have seen FMCG product copies use rich words to sound premium.

But I love BR's different approach.

They've used simple language—like how two people talk to each other. There isn't a single word that is not well-known.

(IMO, this style is the most powerful)

The copy itself:

Let us have a closer look at the copy:

"Basin-Robbins was founded on 1 Simple Idea
Ice Cream should be an every day Treat
And every day should have a new flavour to enjoy.
Long Live Ice Cream"

  • Perfect hook. Made me invested in the story

  • Ice cream as an everyday treat? Hell yeah!! (relatability for ice cream lovers)

  • New flavour every day: now you're speaking of the variety one can try

  • I didn’t find the last line relatable to the copy’s story, but it did have a purpose. It brings closure. The copy feels complete with the closing line

To rewrite the copy, I should understand Baskin Robbins first. I am a happy customer but if I have to share the brand’s story, I should understand BR inside out.

I gathered some details and…

The Baskin Robbins Story

  • Founded by two brothers-in-law, Burt Baskin and Irv Robbins, who were both running ice cream businesses individually before they merged their companies to form Baskin-Robbins in 1945

  • Burt Baskin married Irv Robbins’ sister (just in case you’re wondering who dated whose sister :p)

  • By 1948, BR was popular for its 31 Flavours slogan, promoting the idea that you can have 31 flavours in 31 days

  • BR’s brand messaging has three things in common (and consistent throughout decades):

    - It’s a place for families to hangout
    - It’s a place to take a break from life’s hustle
    - You can choose from many many flavours: “not everyone likes all flavours but each flavour is someone’s favourite”

  • Highlights:
    1943: Rented a store
    1953: Started franchising
    1960: 400 stores in the US
    1970s: BR is an international brand
    1978: Home to 1000 flavours
    2009: Introduced low-fat and sugar-free ice creams
    2015: Added cakes and milkshakes to their menu

  • As of today, BR has 1300+ flavours

notes I made while gathering information

And now comes the big moment: To rewrite a better version or write an alternate copy that feels like it’s tailormade for the brand

I don't think I should change the copy because of its simplicity and direct communication with its customers. But I felt why not suggest some alternatives so different covers can have different copies.

I have decided to use the same fundamentals and write an equally good founding story.

I followed a similar style keeping the cover size and design in mind. I used simple words and kept the word count around 30, like how it was in the original.

It took me forty minutes before I came up with this:

"Two brothers-in-law in California had an undying love for ice cream.
In 1945, they decided to open a place for families to gather and make memories over a dessert.

It was Baskin Robbin's first branch."

Based on my understanding of the brand, here are three more angles one can try:

1. How BR's ice cream is a break in peace for hustlers
2. Variety of flavours (BR has 1300+ flavours today)
3. BR's 31 day 31 flavours story

That’s everything I have for today. Before I say goodbye, I have two things to ask of you:

  1. If you love these breakdowns, send your favourite copies to me. I’ll be happy to break down and rewrite

  2. We aim to hit 5000 subscribers in the next 97 days. If you enjoy reading Cognition, please please please share it on your socials and with your friends. It would mean the world to us

Bloopers from my struggle to pose for thumbnails. Thank God I have Priya to turn pictures like these into click-worthy thumbnails.

See ya! 👋