Friday, November 10, 2006

Why don't you want various different media?

I'm strolling along at work yesterday. The day is going rather well, when I receive a phone call from an editor or a Los Angeles magazine. I spoke with her earlier in the week regarding one of the products that my company sells, the Digital Spy Pen Camera. She wanted to know if we could send her a sample for a photo shoot that her magazine was doing this weekend. It turns out we have none in stock, but I figured that we would have one in returns.

I had someone look into it, and it turns out we did have one in returns. My employee sent her an email letting her know that she would probably see it next week. She called me up and asked me to overnight it. I said that we would not be able to overnight it, but we may have an employee who lives near the location of her office take it to her on Friday. Well, unfortunately, I didn't know if this employee was going to come into the office. She asked why we didn't want to overnight it. I told her that this item is not an item we are particularly interested in having press coverage for.

Apparently, this was too much for her to handle. She went off on how most companies are ecstatic to receive free press for their company and products. She couldn't understand why we wouldn't want to have various different press coverage for our company. She wanted to know whether the press relations department at my company would think differently. The tongue lashing went on for a while. The best part was when she told me that she had never heard about my company before.

I thought it was rather interesting that someone would think this kind of behavior was going to be productive. For someone who doesn't know about my company at all, she was certainly willing to make plenty of assumptions about us. My favorite was when she wanted to go over my head to the PR department. This is entirely my fault. I failed to mention to her during our earlier conversation that I am the Vice President of Marketing for the company. There is one person, the CEO, who is above me. I didn't feel it was necessary to point this out to her during her ranting though. I also didn't feel that it was necessary to point out that my company has 1.6 million customers and that my print advertisements are viewed by more than 100 million Americans each year. In fact, my catalog has a circulation higher than most magazines on the market. Oh well, at least I didn't say anything to her about using the phrase "various different" :-D

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