Gary claims this ad netted three quarters of a million dollars during its lifetime of ten or so years.
A classified version of this ad buried in the back of the Canton,Ohio newspaper supposedly led to numerous inquiries to the newspaper by its readers…and a request by the harried staff that Gary cease running the ad.
This full page ad appeared in many big city newspapers like the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times, though with seemingly limited insertions.
Note the double coupon at the bottom of the ad.
The coupon on the left was forwarded by Gary to the Social Security Administration and the coupon on the right was for ordering the book: “How To Collect Social Security at Any Age.”
This seems like one of those cases in which a bundled offer hikes response appreciably.
Today, most of us here in the States get a little bit jittery anytime someone inquires about our social security number. Keep in mind, this was 1973 and identity theft wasn’t really a concern. So Gary’s offer was a convenient way to obtain this data in an unwired age.
One wonders if an analogous offer of government information could be made successfully today through print ads.
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