W.C. Fields

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.

Yahoo! has been instructed not to filter my e-mail for spam. I want to see everything. What are the new trends? How many millions does Mme. Obi-Wan Kenobi want to transfer into my bank account from Darfur? What is the current method of spelling V*I-A*grA? “One mathematically minded blogger who looked into it,” wrote Michael Specter in the Aug. 6, 2007, New Yorker, “found that there are 600,426,974,379,824, 381,952 ways to spell Viagra.” Specter’s 4,600-word article is almost the last word on spam—a monumental discourse on the history, arithmetic (amount of spam and the ROI needed to make a profit), how it works and

By Denny Hatch "You can't cheat an honest man. Never give a sucker an even break or smarten up a chump." —W.C. Fields In many American upmarket suburbs there's an unwritten agreement among realtors that homes for sale or rent will not be shown or offered to minority families. This is a form of discrimination called redlining. In point of fact, all successful direct marketing is based on redlining—not offering a product or service to undesirable prospects and customers. Examples: Premium bandits. This is consultant Bob Doscher's term for chiselers who join book and record clubs, or subscribe to magazines, to collect

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