Dear Friend & Subscriber,

Today is a sad day indeed. We lost an undercover marketing legend and close Halbert family friend.

Her name is Nancy Jones and if you haven’t heard of her it is because she wanted it that way.

Most of the big direct response advertisers knew she got the very best ad rates humanly possible through her own ingenuity and single-handily made dozens and dozens of losing ads into profitable winners using the trick I’m about to explain.

Nancy has been a fixture in our family since as far back as I can remember.

When we spoke a couple months ago she reminded me of how she used to tuck me into bed for the night.

Anyway, Nancy was not only very good looking in her youth but she also had a brilliant marketing mind.

I view my father’s life or my life with my father in stages.

Nancy goes all the way back to what Kevin and I call The Ohio days when our father was just an average middle class family man who then made it huge by writing what would eventually hold the title for the most widely mailed sales letter in history. That letter is more formally known as known as The Coat of Arms Letter.

She was hired to work at Halbert’s Inc. and soon took up the task of placing ads.

Now obviously, the profit from the sales that come in from an ad have to be more than the cost of the ad to be worth running so... this always puts a limit on how many newspapers and magazines you can run the ads in but Nancy figured out something genius.

Knowing human nature she would send letters to the newspapers and magazines along with a check and note which said in effect...

“Hi,

My name is Nancy Jones and I work for Halberts Inc. and we’d love to run an ad in your paper but after doing the math this wouldn’t be profitable unless we could run it for x amount of dollars. I know this is far below your current card rate but if you have extra space for any reason and can place my ad, I have enclosed a certified check made out for what we can afford to pay.

If you do run the ad you can go ahead and cash the check and if not you can rip it up or send it back.”

Now Nancy Jones knew it is very hard for almost anyone to return money they have in hand and this is why it worked so damn well.

She used this tactic and became the only person the Halbert family has ever recommended for ad placement and I mean the only one ever.

She also really knew targeting.

I remember calling to place an ad through her and she already knew the key demographics I was looking for before I said a word. She also told me which papers were best to run in for my type of promotion and a list of great lead generating papers to follow up with.

My own personal direct marketing dream team included Nancy without question and she is the number one person key players asked me to hook them up with and she really was one of the boys.

The entire time I’ve known Nancy, she has been a titan in a very male dominated world and she could hang with the best of them.

She shared our father’s raw in-your-face honesty along with his wicked sense of humor and a love of boating.

I can’t think of anyone who has been a true close friend to our father longer than Nancy Jones.

They talked regularly from the early 1970s up until our father passed away and she was a great friend to have.

Kevin and I asked a couple times if we could interview her but she shied away from the limelight and I can tell you she shared with us some fantastic stories.

Nancy will be missed by her family and friends but I feel she really deserves a footnote in the direct marketing hall of fame.

God I hope there is a heaven because if there is, my dad and Nancy are yucking it up right now.

With infinite love and affection,
Bond & Kevin

PS I just spoke with her son Andy who placed her eulogy in the Canton Paper. I think it would be great if everyone who knew Nancy Jones could reply to this email (kevin@thegaryhalbertletter.com)with a little message about Nancy to show him just how many people shared an appreciation for his mother.

I know those kind of sentiments helped Kevin and I deal with the loss of our father.




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