Mary Wells and AMC Life 1967

About Mary Wells Lawrence

Born in 1928 Mary Wells Lawrence is one of the greatest living copywriters and ad executives.  She is rightfully credited with being the first female to break into the men’s club that was the ad world of the 50s & 60.  However the impact of her many innovative campaigns should not be underestimated.  In 1966 she co-founded Wells Rich Greene, with this agency she challenged staid traditional advertising, and explored the more imaginative side of marketing.  The more creative campaigns that we see today are a direct result of this pioneering work.


The American Motor Corporation Campaign 1967

In 1967 American Motor Corporation was losing money and market share; they turned to Mary Wells for help. She suggested radical new advertising that combined aggressiveness with a sense of love.  The proposal was met with resistance inside AMC, shock in Madison Avenue, and disbelief in rival motor companies.  This  brief article from Life is the story of the pitch and the interaction between Mary Wells and AMC executives.

I hope you find this historic article as fascinating as I do –  Bob Cook

Can Mary Wells rescue American Motors? Sledge-Hammer Sell by Nancy Belliveau

Page 1

Mary Wells shocks AMC

Page 2

American Motor Corporation resists copywriter and top woman ad exectutive

Page 3

AMC cars are no sexier

Page 4

Reaction to shocking ads Life 1967

Thank you to Time Inc and Google Books for allowing the use of these page images (Copyright Life Magazine 1967)