Sunday, December 10, 2006

junk mail heuristics

Here's one of these lovely "do anything to get them to open the envelope" adverts. Of course it has to have "Important Material Enclosed" in large bold letters (a near-guarantee of recycle-bin fodder these days.) Geico goes a step further -- they print dirty marks on the envelope to make it appear as though there's a credit card inside that scuffed the envelope on the outside. This is lithographed dirt: look close and you can see the dots. And they enclose a card-like object for recipients who need that real-credit-card feel to be convinced to open. The card, naturally, does not resemble the printed dirt very closely.

I want to know why anyone would go with a company (worse yet, an insurance company) that goes to such great lengths to LIE to you?

The gecko can take his Quick Quote card, tri-fold it and stick it up his ass.

The heuristics for junk mail, I think, runs something like this:
- Sender is not clearly identified on the envelope: 40%
- "Important" or "time sensitive" or similar urgent phrasing: 60%
- "Special delivery" phrasing when it came by USPS regular delivery: 100%
- "Personal," "private," or such phrasing indicating exclusivity: 20%
- Brightly colored envelope - 30%

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