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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, April 17, 2014

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Is this the best "Aaron" could do?
Is this the best "Aaron" could do?

Advertising pollution

Walking out to the car this morning, my heart skipped a beat when I saw a note taped to the window. Is it a ticket? Nope. Did someone hit my car and leave information? Nope.

It was an ad.

Now, of course, this has happened to all of us more than once. And I'm wondering -- what is the success rate of these direct marketing pieces of trash? The average response rate for a successful direct mail campaign is only about 2.5 percent.

But, I'm also wondering -- isn't this form of direct marketing illegal?

I bet these "notes" are not only ineffective, but repel people away from their cause. This particular note touted the opportunity of pulling in $2,200 each month working for an "International Company" in "Health & Fitness."

These messages are usually about making gobs of cash, however, I have seen everything from dry cleaning deals to charity support.

A couple years ago, I even got one that was printed to look exactly like a parking ticket. The geniuses behind that one must have thought: "The best way to reach our audience is to piss them off, right?"

Now, are these people:
A.) Obnoxious
B.) Pitifully ignorant
C.) Just plain out-of-touch

You decide. I do know this much: Advertising, when done correctly, is informative, entertaining and motivational. When it's done incorrectly, it's pollution.

So, dear Aaron (the contact listed on my note), I suggest an effective social media campaign or, at least, an ORIGINAL guerrilla-marketing stunt. Until then, find something else to do in the middle of the night instead of cluttering up my neighborhood.

Talkbacks

iabston | Nov. 30, 2009 at 8:36 a.m. (report)

34665 I've called these post-it ninjas before to vent my frustration. I never heard a live person at the other end of the phone. they suck at life

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davidm | Nov. 28, 2009 at 1:02 a.m. (report)

I find these things at retail parking lots and on private property where I live. I have yet to find out if this is legal on private property. I believe it is legal on public property. When I find it on my car I consider it litter. While I don't just throw it on the ground, plenty of people do. I don't blame them, I blame the knob who put it there. Get this. No one ever answers at the number listed. Imagine that.

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