Is it still ok to think outside the box?

If I recall correctly, we retired the phrase “think outside the box” a few years ago. And rightly so. It was a tired cliché, and its use rarely led to a win-win situation that allowed us the opportunity to wrap our head around it to continue the paradigm shift. So I won’t go there.

Recently, a couple of marketing projects afforded us to avoid that cliché completely, and more importantly, allow us to think inside the box!

The JamBox

A financial services client is a firm believer in highly targeted, direct marketing campaigns. Often, the typical approach involves a message to individuals who desire to increase their wealth. But in this campaign, the idea arose that it might be better to target those individuals who have already accumulated wealth, but have concerns about their ability to pass it along to their heirs. In an uncertain economy, these individuals need assurances that the fruits of their hard work will be preserved. Hmm….how do we convey the message of preserving fruits..hmmm…think about it…ah ha – Preserves!

So we found a supplier of Arkansas-preserves, BlackBerry Jam to be specific, and mailed them to these targeted individuals. It was a very soft sell, we didn’t want to spread it on too thick.

Nothing is certain in life or direct marketing, but we feel pretty confident that this JamBox will get opened, and will receive a second look. We be jammin’.


Corporate golf outings remain popular events. Finding a way to get the most out of your sponsorship often times yields results that are sub-par. Our client knew they wanted to furnish top quality golf balls for this event, but if you are like me, those branding moments never seem to last beyond the 5th or 6th hole. We suggested this time that they think ON the box. We replaced the traditional golf ball sleeve with a customized, branded version that featured the flagship product. Now, every time the golfer reached for a ball, they couldn’t help but notice the sponsor. And our guess is, due to the uniqueness of these non-traditional “goody bag” items, they may have spent more time admiring them than their partner’s golf shot.

Did this approach work?

Here is what our client tells us:

Golf balls and boxes were a HIT! We will definitely do that again – one customer saw the picture of the motor on the box and approached our salesman to make an appointment to visit w/him about switching to our motors…

It sounds like that mulligan we purchased won’t be necessary.

If you are feeling a little boxed in with your direct marketing efforts, give us a call. We can help, and the cliche’s are optional!


Paul Strack, CustomXM


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