The Mail Campaign




Some years ago a client engaged a consultant to help with a small postal mailing to the purchasing departments of blue chip corporations. The consultant sourced the list (which was provided on MSExcel) and drafted the letter. Thereafter the client was keen to take control of the project, ie., to run the mail-merge and the fulfilment (basically printing, envelope-stuffing and mailing).

The consultant discovered some weeks later that a junior member of the client's marketing department had sorted the list (changed the order of the listed organisations in the spreadsheet), but had sorted the company name column only, instead of all columns, with the result that every letter (about 500) was addressed and sent to a blue chip corporation at another entirely different corporation's address.

Interestingly the mailing produced a particularly high response, which when investigated seemed to stem from the fact that an unusually high percentage of letters were opened and read, due apparently to the irresistible temptation of reading another corporation's mail.

— A marketing snafu unveiled questionable values.

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