Monday, December 24, 2007

Missing in action

Our circulation director tells me the phones were ringing off the hook Sunday morning.

Late delivery complaints? Some, as usually is the case on bad weather days.

Most of the calls, however, were about something else: Subscribers thought they were missing advertising inserts usually in the Sunday paper because the total package was smaller than normal. "I didn't get the whole paper," they asserted, one after another. "And by the way, where's the Target ad?"

Same thing was happening in the stores, the circulation director said. People were going through stacks of papers looking for sections and inserts that weren't there, much to the consternation of employees who had to clean up the mess.

Interesting phenomenon. Annoying for our circulation clerks and shopkeepers. Frustrating for subscribers.

But there's a silver lining for us and our advertisers: Customers wanted to read the ads. They were afraid they didn't get them. They didn't believe us when we said they weren't scheduled.

Talk about brand loyalty and effective advertising vehicles. Imagine calling a radio or TV station asking why there aren't more commercials. Or calling the post office when you don't get enough junk mail.

If only businessmen who don't believe in the power of newspaper advertising had been answering our phones on Sunday morning.
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