Updated: Sep 24, 2022
One of my favorite childhood memories.... When I was growing up one of my favorite entertaining routines was going to Rainbow Foods after church and partaking in all the free samples. My sisters and mom and I would strut around the store like we were at a cocktail party, eating cubes of cheese, slices of fruit and tiny slices of pizza off of toothpicks. Of course we brought some of those snacks home if we liked them. I've tried all kinds of products after being given a sample, some more expensive than others. In fact, just today I was getting a treatment done at Professional Skin Care Choices in Los Alamos and the owner, June English gave me a handful of samples of products that I would probably want to buy next time. It was a good, non-pushy, way to show me more of her products even though I had already bought several products and had already spent as much as I was going to that day. By giving me samples, she got me thinking about what else she could do and her eagerness to have me try them let me see how much she believed in the product. A good ad is like a written sample. As part of my work being mentored by David Garfinkel, I am studying How to Write a Good Advertisement, by Victor Schwab.
Schwab describes an effective ad as being so visceral, concrete and dramatically vivid, that it's just like getting a "visual sample" left on your "mental doorstep." One example of a time this happened was when I was buying mattresses. When I first moved to Los Alamos, I went to the only department store in town (CB Fox) and me and my new baby gave each of the mattresses a try until we found the most comfortable one that we could afford. But then when I moved a couple of years ago and needed a new mattress, CB Fox wasn't around anymore because they sold their store. But it didn't matter because all of the people in my life were BEGGING for a Purple mattress because they loved those commercials. I ordered two without even trying them out. My new goal in life is to make my ads like feel like a tangible sample.