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Birthday Marketing

Gary V is a fan of selling by teaching, but what about selling by wishing someone a happy birthday? Are these companies simply being cordial, or taking advantage of another chance to increase traffic flow to their sites?

Here are three four
e-mails I received with a b-day message:




Happy Birthday from O'Charley's


  1. Peter
    2010/03/26 at 11:21 am

    Hi Nick,

    I can appreciate your sensitivity to such messaging and share with you a distaste for things tacky or inappropriately opportunistic.

    Please note Elfster is a site dedicated to social gift giving and celebrating gift giving occasions with friends and family. The message you show above is a notification that 3 people have left a birthday message for you (Anna, Meg, and Ashley). You know those 3 people, right?

    Oh yes, and one more thing… Happy Birthday!


  2. 2010/03/26 at 11:51 am

    Hey Peter,

    I am frequently critical of advertising, but actually think the birthday pitch is a good method. I’d much rather be marketed to when I’m happy (birthday) than when I’ve lost a friend/family member, lost a job, or even when my favorite basketball team loses.

    I clicked through 3 of 4 messages, and Elfster was one of them. I have found your service to be very helpful, especially for a techie like me who asks for very specific gifts (ie Titanium Spork from ThinkGeek).

    I hope my post didn’t offend you or Elfster, but there is a reason that I have maintained my Elfster account and the e-mails don’t get spam filtered. 🙂 Also, thanks for actively seeking me out as a user of your product! That shows that you truly care about the satisfaction of your customers, and I’m looking forward to more companies following your lead.


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