Advertising Money Wasted

As 2008 wheezes to a close, every marketing dollar is more precious than ever. And an ad in the front section of the Sunday paper sure ain’t cheap.

So I was distressed to see how Filson decided to waste a few thousand dollars in Portland on Sunday morning:


If they were hoping to convince me to do my holiday shopping at their stores, here are some questions their ad should have answered:

1. What “outdoor clothing and gear” might I find at a Filson store? The outdoor aficionado might already know, but a huge portion of the general public has no idea. When you advertise in the Sunday newspaper in mid-December, your target is the general public.

2. I have other choices for outdoor gear. I could “join” REI for holiday shopping — why should I spend my money with Filson instead?

3. What’s the free gift? Is it good enough that I’d be willing to schlep downtown and drop $200 or more?

Filson is paying handsomely for a small piece of the public’s attention — once they have it, they could offer some great gift ideas; or sale prices on outerwear; or cool new fishing gear that only Filson has. Or at least give their web address for anyone who wanted to find out more.

In an environment where consumer attention, and money, is in short supply, this ad gives the reader no reason at all to get in the car and drive to a Filson store.


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