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Sheldon Wolfe
Senior Member
Username: sheldon_wolfe

Post Number: 187
Registered: 01-2003
Posted on Wednesday, January 25, 2006 - 05:54 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

We are all inundated with tons of paper advertising this and that, and most of it we just throw away or recycle. Advertising is an integral, unavoidable part of business, and although it would be nice to be rid of junk mail, I won't go so far as to say we should eliminate advertising mail.

But, in today's mail, I received a package that struck a nerve - something that's hard to do to a thick-skinned, insensitive, humorless old specifier. It was a corrugated cardboard box, approximately sixteen by twenty-four inches by one inch thick.

Inside, wrapped in bubble wrap, was a wall calendar. And a grand calendar it was - colorful pictures printed on heavy glossy stock, with metal binding and a metal hanger. So what's wrong with a that? I doubt many of us have that much wall space, but the thing that makes this a useless item, one that will doubtless go directly from the inbox to the garbage, is that the calendar itself - the part that shows the dates - measures about four inches square.

A truly amazing waste of countless dollars in photography, layout, printing, packaging, shipping, and recycling - more likely landfill - for something that has no use.
Doug Frank FCSI CCS
Senior Member
Username: doug_frank_ccs

Post Number: 131
Registered: 06-2002
Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2006 - 10:31 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

I too received one of those magnificent calendars yesterday. In fact, so did about 8 others in my firm. Unlike Sheldon, My first thought was how much money that company had spent in creating and then mailing who knows how many of those things around the world. But then Sheldon’s comments jolted me back to how I “Should” be thinking; not about some advertisers dollars but about how our dollars will eventually be spent in landfill management.

Still it’s amazing to me that most companies are using the internet to distribute Product information claiming it’s more cost efficient (I’d rather have a hard-copy catalog; but that’s a story for a different thread). Then they spend a kabillion dollars on a fluff piece that has no value at all.

But it’s not all bad. Playing with the bubble wrap was a fun diversion from work for a short time.
Tom Heineman RA, FCSI, SCIP
Senior Member
Username: tom_heineman

Post Number: 75
Registered: 06-2002
Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2006 - 11:01 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Where do I pick up my calendar?

We have more than one landfill here.
David Axt, AIA, CCS, CSI
Senior Member
Username: david_axt

Post Number: 601
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2006 - 03:17 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Remember: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Sheldon: Just regift the calendar to someone in the office. (We have a freebee table at my office and stuff goes fast!) Reuse the cardboard box and bubble wrap for original specs that go to the printer.
Sheldon Wolfe
Senior Member
Username: sheldon_wolfe

Post Number: 188
Registered: 01-2003
Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2006 - 04:23 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

If the calendar were usable, someone might be interested, but reactions from those who looked at it ranged from rolling eyes to astonishment. Of the several that came in, none were kept. I wonder how many thousands of them are in the garbage this week? Great investment!
William Buchholz, AIA, CCS, LEED-AP
New member
Username: bill_buchholz

Post Number: 1
Registered: 12-2005
Posted on Wednesday, February 15, 2006 - 09:57 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

So is anyone going to tell us whose calendar it was? And has anyone called them to give them some feedback on their little gift? I think almost every manufacturer is very sensitive to what their clients think, and this seems like a great opportunity to provide that feedback. I'm doing it all the time with construction materials - why not with advertising?
David J. Wyatt
Senior Member
Username: david_j_wyatt_csi_ccs_ccca

Post Number: 21
Registered: 07-2005
Posted on Thursday, February 16, 2006 - 09:23 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

We contribute to the problem when we indiscrimately allow representatives to scan our bar-coded badges at product shows. A trip down a single aisle at a large show can result in hundreds of pounds of mail arriving at our offices that may have little to do with our business interests. Even when you tell the earnest product rep that you don't want catalogues sent, the manufacturer's media machine will send them anyway.

A tip: Before you open parcels, read the return address to determine who sent it. If you don't open the package, you can write "Return - Refused" and the package will make its way back to its source at no cost to you. This will get you off the mailing list.

On the bright side, some manufacturers are doing a good job of cutting down on unwieldy promotional stuff. Ardex and the W.W. Henry Company have developed useful 20-page bound desk references that measure about 8-inches x 8-inches and contain their full line catalogues on CDs. These are great for independent spec writers who don't have lots of room to store product literature. They know how to be clear, concise, complete, and correct.
Doug Frank FCSI CCS
Senior Member
Username: doug_frank_ccs

Post Number: 208
Registered: 06-2002
Posted on Tuesday, January 15, 2008 - 07:42 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

January 15th 2008 and my New calendar has arrived. Except for the dates, it's just like last year's; packaged in carbaor and wrapped in bubble wrap. Apparently someone in the marketing department thinks there's value in these things (they obviuosly don't read these posts).

Since we never named names last year, and I'm not going to spill the beans, but here's a hint: the sound a crow makes + a synonym for close.
Doug Frank FCSI CCS
Senior Member
Username: doug_frank_ccs

Post Number: 209
Registered: 06-2002
Posted on Tuesday, January 15, 2008 - 07:46 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

although at least the calendar doesn't contain nearly as many "typos" as my post

David R. Combs, CSI, CCS, CCCA
Senior Member
Username: davidcombs

Post Number: 260
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Tuesday, January 15, 2008 - 10:23 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Just received mine also.

The irony is, the calendar's theme is environmental stewardship, and making the right choices when it comes to sustainability.

24 1/2" x 13 1/2" x 2" cardboard container: . . . $1.50

23" x 36" sheet of bubble wrap: . . . . . . . . . . $0.95

Shrink-wrap covering: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $0.50

19" x 24" spiral-bound, color-photo format in which to display each actual 5" x 3 1/2" monthly calendar: . . . . . . . . . . . . $27.00

FedEx shipping: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $10.00

Ability to toss it in the recycle bin: . . . . . . . . PRICELESS
Sheldon Wolfe
Senior Member
Username: sheldon_wolfe

Post Number: 361
Registered: 01-2003
Posted on Tuesday, September 08, 2009 - 11:24 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

And today's winner is...

Dow Roofing Systems, for their three-page, 17 by 21 inches, super glossy advertisement, announcing the purchase of JP Stevens, arriving in a 17 by 21 heavy card stock envelope.

Word count, excluding logos, copyright, fine print:
page 1: 23
page 2: 30
page 3: 49
page 4: 28
page 5: 101
page 6: 74
total: 305, only 189 of which are text, the rest being headings.

Plus several screen captures from the website, with print too small for old folks (most of us, according to Bob's survey).

Accompanying the huge, unwieldy advertisement was a single 8-1/2 by 11 letter, which pretty well summarized the ad. Much more to the point, much easier to read. And far less expensive in any terms you care to choose.
Word count, ignoring logos, addresses, and signature: 171.

All of which went directly into the recycling bin.

At least the ad wasn't promoting how green the company is!

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