Friday, March 07, 2008


A little something called "direct address" maybe?

I took a picture this week. It was pretty good. Now, it's just basketball, but it's an interesting and somewhat unusual image nonetheless. In keeping with the recent theme of not sharing, I'm not going to share it here (creative commons my ass.) Suffice it to say I think I might be onto something.

I tracked down the e-mail address of the player's parents, sent them a low-res file, told them to enjoy the shot, and said I could make a print for them if they are interested. It just dawns on me now that, in the right light, this could look an awful lot like spam. Ultimately, it was an unsolicited offer. Yes, I sell those penis pills as well, but that's done in an entirely separate mailing, and I don't use my real name. Anyway, it took me a while to figure out just what to say, and how to say it without coming across like Penis Pill Guy.

I guess the goal was to just get the image in front of the right person and see what happens. The result was a lot like staring into the nozzle of an aerosol can that "doesn't work", and then shooting yourself in the face with it.

Here's the response:

Oh my gosh! What an incredible shot! I don't know how you did this, but it's the greatest shot I have of Jon playing basketball-----ever!
It was so very kind of you to think of us. A million thanks for capturing a moment in Jon's career and sharing it with us. We'll never forget your kindness!
Thanks, again

On the one hand, I think this proves the idea that I was onto something. On the other hand, I believe you have just witnessed the most kind "no thanks" ever conceived. To paraphrase:

"This is the greatest shot ever! I do not wish to buy a print."

This is of course all my fault for not coming out with the simple, straightforward type of "give me some money and I'll give you an awesome product that you totally want" offer in the first place, like I do in the penis ads. Yup. Take a page from the boner pill manual; the soft sell just doesn't work.

Honestly, if the picture means that much to you, how 'bout opening that wallet and seeing if you can't pry loose a 20 or something, huh?

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