I Call BULLSHIT, #17

Posted July 13th, 2007 by Joe Kaiser

We used different names and different phone numbers so we could track our callbacks and see what was working and what was not.

Dear Rob,

I’m a marketer.

That means, for me anyway, I create different kinds of mail pieces to send to people in foreclosure.

My goal is to get them to pick up the phone and call. Every now and then, they do.

I never know, really, if the piece works until it’s in the mail. Some of my very best ideas (at least I thought they were) proved to be terrible, with dismal results.

And some I thought only average turned out to be spectacular, getting far more calls than expected.

So how do we know what works and what doesn’t?

We test.

again with the scam thing?

How does your office describe this testing method?

. . . some solicitations use fictitious names and give the appearance they are coming from a person other than defendant.— Amended Complaint, June 21, 2007


There is nothing sinister in what we do.

Any reasonable person looking at our activities would agree, and yet your office takes test marketing, standard in virtually every industry, and turns it into something diabolical.


Last year we sent thousands and thousands of postcards. We used different names and different phone numbers so we could track our callbacks and see what was working and what was not.

All callbacks went to the same call center and all calls were returned by my staff. There was no confusion with any seller and no intent to deceive anyone.

test results

Certainly, no one actually believed Bobo the world’s only real estate buying chimp would be returning their phone calls.

That was one postcard we tested in the bunch.

How’d it work out?

Not so hot, but than again, who’d call a chimp to save their home? Or, the better question, who’d call someone who sent a postcard featuring a chimp to save their home?

I decided to find out and so I tested.

You may recall I also tested “Does Your Property Suck” and “The Problem Property Guy,” the other two postcards to which you’re referring.

And now we know a little more about what works.

more testing

Here’s one I’m playing around with now (click picture) . . .

Joe in Hat

It’s a little silly and not really refined at the moment, but it’s a start and it’ll be interesting to see if people respond.

I hope so.

three faces of Eve

No one postcard or marketing campaign can pull off what three good postcards and three separate marketing campaign can.

So, beyond simply testing, we create and send marketing pieces with different looks and different styles in hopes one of them hits home.

Some people like an approach that’s strictly business. Others respond to fun stuff like Bobo. And some react best when you’ve told a long story (and others, a short, one line story).

That’s we why create and send a wide range of marketing pieces.

And that’s why it’s not a scam.

Dots connect

Once again, Rob, your office has connected the dots and done so in their usual and extraordinarly inaccurate manner.

But I’m used to that by now.

In the meantime, I will give you this . . . Bobo is a ficticious name (but please don’t tell him because I guarantee, he’ll throw poop).

That much you got right.

The rest of it?

Complete and total BOBOSHIT.


Joe Kaiser

8 Responses to: “I Call BULLSHIT, #17”

  1. Cindy Mosqueda responds:
    Posted: July 13th, 2007 at 9:57 am


    I’m doing a lot of reading and research in the process of a mid-life career change focusing on real estate in some form (the exact form still a gray fog).

    Accidentally ran across your blog yesterday and am riveted by your story, your integrity and entertaining writing style!

    Your rational thinking and willingness to go nose to nose with those who flaunt their confusion under the protection of their power is almost heroic!

    Wishing you the best!

  2. Joe Kaiser responds:
    Posted: July 13th, 2007 at 10:15 am

    Cindy, glad you’ve found us and welcome aboard.

    Your comments are genuinely appreciated. Thank you.


  3. AKM responds:
    Posted: July 13th, 2007 at 2:55 pm

    Joe – anyone who knows the FIRST THING about direct marketing would understand what you are doing. Some do it by coding the label, some by the color of the postcard sent.

    Direct Marketing 101. I work in sales, and it’s usually one of the first questions we ask people who call in – “how did you hear about us?”

    The fact that the AG doesn’t get this, and makes it sounds duplicitous only shows their basic misunderstanding of how the science of test marketing works.

    Or maybe even more frightening, they do know how it works, yet choose to spin it against you. Unbelievable!

  4. GBK responds:
    Posted: July 13th, 2007 at 7:01 pm

    Great looking 1955 Studebaker Starlight Coupe in the background . It was red and black


    The photographer

  5. Joe Kaiser responds:
    Posted: July 13th, 2007 at 9:28 pm

    I remember . . . Pops.

  6. Seth responds:
    Posted: July 14th, 2007 at 11:22 am

    Betty Crocker still going strong after 86 years?

    Oh, that’s right, she’s just a General Mills’ brand name.

  7. adrian w. responds:
    Posted: July 15th, 2007 at 6:15 pm

    Bobo this. Bobo that. I bet if the AG digs deep enough. They’ll find Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp behind the persona !!
    Adrian W.

  8. AKM responds:
    Posted: July 16th, 2007 at 6:23 pm

    You know, I wonder if anyone ever sued that software company that made a fortune selling their “Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing” product. Even had a photo of Mavis on the cover. Nice looking lady. Only problem was, there never was a Mavis Beacon. Deceptive, maybe. Smart marketing, definitely.

    The idiocy of the AG continues to astound.
    Hate to break it to you Seth, but there is no Aunt Jemima or Uncle Ben either!

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