Just in time for summer, this story is an oldie but a goody! I often re-read this to remind me about how important advertising, let alone performing arts program book advertising, is to a business!
This story, “The Man Who Sold Hot Dogs”, originally appeared in Advertising Age quite a while ago:
“There once was a man who lived by the side of the road and sold hot dogs. In fact, he sold very good hot dogs. He put up signs on the highway telling people how good his hot dogs taste. He stood by the side of the road and called out “Buy a hot dog, mister?”
And people bought his hot dogs. They bought so many hot dogs, the man increased his meat and bun orders. He bought a bigger stove too, so he could meet his demands. And finally, he brought his son home from college to help out in the family business.
But something happened. His son said, “Father, don’t you watch television or read the papers? Don’t you know there’s a big recession going on? The European situation is terrible. The domestic crisis is even worse!”
And the father thought, “Well, my son’s a smart boy. He’s been to college. He ought to know what he’s talking about.”
So the man cut down on his meat and bun orders, took down the signs he had put up on the highway, and no longer bothered to stand by the side of the road to sell his hot dogs.
And his sales fell almost overnight. “You’re right, son,” said the father. “We certainly are in the middle of a serious recession!”
You see, through good times and bad times, advertising, for any type of business–huge or small, is ever so important to its existence! And if the business stops trying to reach and influence their customers today, what makes this business think that all their potential customers or clients will remember them tomorrow?
So the next time you’re calling on that program book advertiser, and they want to pull their ad, tell them the story about “The Man Who Sold Hot Dogs.”