Truly Scary Direct Marketing Horror Stories…

frustration-300x225If you stay in any business long enough, you’ll have some real jaw-dropping tales to tell. In the marketing and advertising business, it’s easy to rack up some really good stories of production nightmares that kept you up at night.

Mine? That’s easy. It was a mailing to a specific group of cotton growers in the Delta region of the Mississippi for a multi-national chemical company.  The concept revolved around a hunting theme to incent the growers to buy certain amounts of a specific herbicide to increase their cotton output. The first mailing was a 3-dimensional mailing with a duck call nested inside a small box. As always, a pre-mailing went out to sales managers. After that mailing dropped, I received a phone call telling me the duck call was not a duck call but a crow call and crows were the nemesis of cotton growers.


Needless to say, I scrambled and managed to find real duck calls. I was lucky enough to have access to a really excellent mail house who worked with me to remove the offending crow calls and replace them with duck calls and fulfill the mailing, missing my deadline by only a day or two.

Problem solved. Lesson learned (don’t believe everything you are told–make sure a duck call really is a duck call). This story has been told to production managers many times. I like to watch the sweat break out on their upper lip.

What’s your production nightmare? Drop us a line and let us know.  Or, check out this article about learning from our mistakes in the marketing and advertising business:


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