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Archive for February 23rd, 2009

Limited Time Offer

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I’ll admit it; I was cut loose, kicked out, expelled, asked to leave and booted from “marketing skool”. So I never got my degree and I missed the week where they talked about the “limited time offer” ploy. Just looking at it written out I get tingly all over just thinking of its genius. Limited time offer, it just sounds so wonderful, scary and exciting.


Here is the exclusive, behind the scenes look at the transcript from the first meeting that launched the LTO movement.


“Hey Dave, thanks for meeting with me today.”

“No problem Phil, thank you for taking a look at my ad campaign.”

“That’s what you’re paying me for”

[They both laugh]

“I’ve been giving your restaurant a lot of thought and I’ve come up with an idea. You need more people to come, but less often.”


“Just bare with me Dave, you get traffic, but it’s boring, stale traffic, those people are going to come eat there no matter what. You need to make people feel like if they don’t stop by your restaurant that they’ll be missing out on something, that they blew it, that they were left out.”

“Um… OK? But how do I…”

“It’s so easy, limited time offer! Limited. Time. Offer. Just say it. Doesn’t it just scream urgency?”

“I guess I don’t underst…”

“Dave, jesus, pull your head out! Have a cup of coffee or rub hot sauce in your eyes or something. You need to think up some kind of gimmicky sandwich, something that’s a lot like all your other sandwiches, but has just a little something extra, say like mushrooms or Swiss cheese. Then you run a huge campaign that says, This Sandwich For A Limited Time Only So Hurry In!”

“But if people liked it, why wouldn’t I just add it to the menu permanently?”

“Are you the stupidest man alive? How did you ever get to where you are without me? For @#$* sake Dave! If they can buy the sandwich anytime they wanted, they’re not going to buy it! They only want it till it’s gone!”

“OK, you don’t have to yell.”

“Tell you what; you can bring it back every year. Yea… it will be our Back By Popular Demand campaign. I’m so @#$%&* brilliant, I really should be charging you more.”


There you have it, the history of how the LTO became the greatest idea of American advertising. You know when I read that transcript it really does make a lot of sense and all my hate and anger just melts away.


I wonder if that’s only for a limited time.


Egg On!

Ramblin’ Rooster

Written by Ramblin' Rooster

February 23, 2009 at 5:00 am