In the pursuit of clients, advertising agencies such as mine will often decide to forego payment on an ad campaign in order to prove their true value to a potential client. Many describe this sort of work using hoity-toity academic terms like “fiscally irresponsible” or “idiotic.” But us? We’re just common folk, and prefer to see such work as “pro bono publico.”
Last year, we ran across a company that seemed perfect for the old pro bono publico treatment, a small pharmaceutical distributor called Candian Pharmacy. The company had a great product they sold for well below retail. However, their ad campaign was strictly e-centric, if you know what I mean. Foregoing traditional media, Candian Pharmacy opted instead for a kind of “viral marketing,” wherein they left their mark on customers via e-mail viruses. Pretty high-tech stuff.
But we believe even high-tech firms still need a traditional media face. So, unbeknownst to them, we used Candian Pharmacy’s original marketing copy and developed the below ad, running it in several thousand newspapers across the country.
And here’s the best part! Although Candian Pharmacy has yet to return our e-mails or send us our order, the ad apparently caught the eye of a wealthy Nigerian prince who no doubt saw our ample pluck and decided to split his riches with us! Our cut will be more than enough to cover our losses on the Candian Pharmacy gig! I tell ya, sometimes the universe works in mysterious ways!