Ann Coulter

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

Heather Fletcher is senior content editor with Target Marketing.

In this episode of “TM Top 3,” Taylor Knight reviews the week’s top marketing news and takeaways, including Ann Coulter taking to Twitter to show her displeasure with Delta, how stretching the truth can hurt your brand and five tips for buying marketing technology, which are gleaned from Target Marketing’s research report, “The Marketing Technology Buying Process.”

Delta’s brand took a hit this weekend from conservative pundit Ann Coulter who was upset that her $30 seat upgrade got ignored. Brand representatives apologized for the mix-up, but hit back at Coulter’s insults — including those about the passenger placed in Coulter’s aisle seat on Saturday who the pundit said had “dachshund” legs.

When I saw that the 2008 rate for a speech by Larry Summers was $45,000 to $135,000, I got to thinking.

Out of curiosity, I started prowling the various Web sites of speakers' bureaus and came to six conclusions:

  1. It seems everybody in the world is available for speeches. Included are political and show business stars, second and third bananas, and hundreds upon hundreds of people I never heard of.
  2. All of these people—luminaries and nobodies—get fees from $1,000 to $1 million, plus expenses.
  3. I used to make a lot of speeches, and all I ever got was expenses and a plaque with my name engraved on it.
  4. I was a damned fool. I was as much a nobody as anybody else and could've picked up some dough if I'd just asked.
  5. If someone invites you to make a speech, think about asking for an honorarium at the very least, if not a fat fee, plus expenses. For Colin Powell, expenses include a private jet along with his $100,000 fee.
  6. The worst that can happen is that no money in the budget exists for fees or expenses. If you refuse, someone will replace you.

MacRae Ross was a client many years ago and a great guy. He taught me a lot. Everybody that knew him loved him. Mac was smart, bubbling with energy, a devout rugby player, great conversationalist and party animal. I heard that he married a lady named Marji and became a father. But he was in the Washington, D.C., area while my wife, Peggy, and I were living in Connecticut, so we lost touch. Last year, I was deeply saddened to hear Mac had died of pancreatic cancer in 2006. He was so very young. In the July 16, 1998, issue of Fast Company, Lisa

Note: Denny Hatch personally answers all mail. Readers respond to “Mad as all Heck,” published on June 15, 2006, which discussed Ann Coulter and restaurateur Joey Vento. I received your Business Common Sense e-newsletter at work. I don’t know whether the 9-11 widows really are riding their publicity spree, as Ann Coulter claims. I do know that too many Americans care more about money than about people. Suppose she’s right? I also know that Ann Coulter has hit some nails right on the head. I’ve read excerpts from her books and I find them incredibly funny. She’s out there poking fun at the sacred cows in

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