The big recycling pile

A couple of times every month, I open all the bills, bank statements, investment statements, and government correspondence for my three (!!) corporations and blast through the paperwork (somehow, I always seem to open cheques from customers a bit more promptly). I’ve read marketing books that suggest businesses should use invoices and other business correspondence as an opportunity to market to customers, and the banks, phone companies, and even the government have taken this to heart — when I open a typical envelope, I’ll pull out a 1-2 page statement, then dump the envelope and several pages of brochures and newsletters into the recycling pile.

Am I an anomaly for not reading those? I discard them just as fast as I discard spam email, except that in the case of spam, I at least have to scan the subject lines first. For the junk inserts, all I have to do is feel the glossy paper under my fingers, or catch a glimpse of a smiling model staring off the page, and my arm reflexively tosses them; even easier, once I’ve pulled out the actual statement or invoice, I know that everything else is junk, and don’t need to examine it at all.

How are marketers ever going to reach people when we’ve developed such good, and even casual defences against them, both online and in print?

About David Megginson

Scholar, tech guy, Canuck, open-source/data/information zealot, urban pedestrian, language geek, tea drinker, pater familias, red tory, amateur musician, private pilot.
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2 Responses to The big recycling pile

  1. Norman Walsh says:

    I do the same thing. I doubt I’ve ever done more than glance accidentally at all that junk.

  2. I do occasionally look at some of the junk that comes with the statements (my bad!). At least I never bought any of it! Well, maybe once. šŸ™‚ Anyway, I do, at some low level, feel abused by the fact that I bought (and am paying for) a service and instead of just paying for that service, I’m subjected to unwanted and unsoliceted ads. With the credit card bills in particular, the ads are often (maybe usually) not even related to the banking service.

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