From The Gary Halbert Letter
| You know, every so often, I get a call from someone who doesn't know me and they say something like this: "Gary, we hear you've got one of the best marketing minds on the planet and we've got something you can really sink your teeth into. Something that's a great challenge. See, we manufacture little, portable refrigerators and we want you to market them to Eskimos. The way we figure, when we can say we've got a 'fridge so different even Eskimos buy it, then everybody else will stand in line to get one. Doesn't that sound exciting?" |
"Oh boy!" I say while jumping up and down. "That's just what I need... another challenge! Hey, you've really come to the right guy. By golly, I was just thinking: Here I am responding to the challenges of trying to put my kids through college, supporting my mother, sending money to my ex-wife, meeting a hefty payroll, paying all my rents, scraping up enough to pay taxes, dealing with petty bureaucrats, trying to write a state-of-the-art newsletter every month, keeping fit so I don't have more health problems, trying to figure out new ways to promote my own products, trying to figure out why my last promo didn't work, meeting 16 deadlines every day and... and... and...
"Oh God Am I Happy You'veBULL... SHIT! American business owners need another "challenge" about as much as Warren Beatty needs help getting dates. What we need are "set-ups," lay-down hands, deals that can't hardly miss even if everything goes wrong. (As it always does.)
Brought Me Another 'Challenge'!
I wanna sell heroin to junkies. Fudge bars that make you skinny to porkers. Porno videos to Pee Wee Herman. Travel luggage to President Bush. Memory pills to Ronald Reagan. Kitty Kelley dart boards to Nancy Reagan. Condoms to Geraldo Rivera. (Did you read his new book? Whew!) Booze to Ted Kennedy. I.Q. pills to Dan Quayle, etc... etc... etc.
Are you getting the idea? I don't want (and certainly don't need) another "challenge." No... I WANT IT TO BE EASY!
Here's my idea of an acceptable marketing "challenge": Someone comes to me and says he's got this new diet pill that burns off 1-1/2 pounds of fat per day no matter what or how much you eat. Not only that, he's got proof in the form of double-blind studies. Plus, he's got FDA approval stating his pill really does live up to all his claims. Plus, he's got hundreds of testimonials from satisfied users who've given him permission to use them along with their extremely dramatic before and after photos. Plus, he's got ten M.D.'s who rave about his product. Plus, he's got Liz Taylor to endorse his product and she's agreed to sign any ad I write. Plus, Eric Weinstein has uncovered a list of 10,000,000 virgin porkers who've never been sent a diet product direct mail piece.
Now, that's Gary C. Halbert's idea of a desirable marketing "challenge"!