Wednesday, June 13, 2012

GG President Dan Gerstein Featured in Johnnie Walker Blue Label Promotion

Great scotch and great writers go together like the Old Man and the Sea (sorry, we couldn’t resist the obligatory Hemingway reference). So when one of the world’s premier scotch brands, Johnnie Walker Blue Label, was looking for a ghostwriting expert to help Father’s Day gift buyers come up with memorable personalized inscriptions on the their bottles this month, it was only natural that they would turn to New York’s premier full-service writing firm, Gotham Ghostwriters.

Johnnie Walker has been offering free engraving on Blue Label bottles for several years through their website, and to help promote this perk, they have set up a dedicated engraving kiosk in Grand Central Terminal for commuters to get their inscriptions done in person and in a hurry.

This year, as an added attraction, the folks at Johnnie Walker asked GG President Dan Gerstein to serve as their in-house inscription expert. As part of his wordsmithing duties, Dan will be hosting office hours at the Grand Central engraving kiosk on Thursday, June 14, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. He will also be available to do phone consultations, which can be arranged by emailing

For those who can’t make it to Grand Central, Dan developed a handy set of tips and tricks to help sons and daughters of all persuasions deliver a gift their dad will never forget.

1) Keep it tight. Remember, you only have 45 characters to say something memorable. So think of your words as being precious as the gift you are giving—to be poured with care. Don't worry about signing your name; write the right thing, and he'll know who the gift is from. Focus on maximizing your message.

2) Make it personal. A special gift like Johnnie Walker Blue Label deserves a special inscription. So leave the generic Father's Day wishes to the greeting card people and show your dad you're thinking of him. It doesn't matter whether you're serious, goofy, cryptic, or simple—just try to be original and personal. Share some inside insight, like referencing his favorite team or the golf trip you took to Scotland together. The surest way to connect with him is to connect the message to you.

3) Know your audience. Most dads love Blue Label. But their other tastes can vary widely, particularly when it comes to matters of the heart. What sounds like corn pone to one man can sing like a tone poem to another. So don't feel the need to meet somebody else's expectations. If your dad appreciates wordplay, have some pun. If he's more sentimental, play those heartstrings. Either way, speak his language.

4) Show yourself. Since you are striving to send a special message, it's great to aim high. Should you be inspired to say something profound or witty, go for it. But it's more important for your engraving to ring true as you. So while you're speaking dad's language, make sure it's with your accent. Use words and phrasing that come naturally and sound familiar. There's a straight line from authentic to "Awwwww. . . ."

5) Stay classy. Your inscription should be special to you and your dad. But bear in mind that he may want to share his Blue Label—along with your message—by putting it on display in the den or at the office for all comers to see. It's fine to have some fun. Just be sure, as you have done your whole life, to make him proud.

You can find out more details about the Blue Label Father’s Day campaign here.

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