An open letter to the marketing team at Similac:
My mother sent me a text. “Is there something I should know?” she asked. (Hopefully, I think.) Why? Because you guys at Similac decided to send a box of infant formula – totally unwanted and unrequested – to me, care of my parents’ home address, where I have not lived in over a dozen years. I guess you stalked me on the internet enough to determine that I might be a woman, in my mid-thirties, and married, therefore potentially a child-bearing consumer profile, and you decided to send me a little “gift.”
As a marketer, I understand the desire to get ahead of your customer’s needs and reach out to new markets, but this is an inappropriate practice that should end immediately.
I’m not pregnant. But what if I wanted to be? What if I were trying and unable to get pregnant? What if I recently lost a child? What if I recently got separated or divorced? What if I recently had a miscarriage or abortion and this package caused me emotional distress? I can think of a long list of scenarios where receiving this box of free, unasked-for, un-wanted baby formula would cause me distress, actually. Most of them should have been good reasons to walk away from this promotion idea.
I’m not your customer. But what if I was? What if you guessed right and I were newly pregnant? I think I’d want to be the one to decide how to tell people – and who to tell, and when. I can guarantee you that if I am ever pregnant, I’d like to be the one to tell my family – not have them find out because you sent an unsolicited box of crap to them.
I can think of many more ways you screwed this up with your lack of thought and empathy than ways this promotion turns out well. Uncool, Similac. I’m hereby sending you to the marketing Hall of Shame.
PS – I Googled “How did Similac get my address?” and found a long list of other people who have been spammed! Similac, you should know we are all spooked, annoyed, angry at you – or all three!