Work in Advertising? Read all of your Spam.

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I was right there with John Durham from Carat Fusion as he berated his colleagues in the advertising business for their dislike of advertising.

Durham, Joe Jaffe’s guest co-host on the most recent installment of the Across the Sound podcast, chided advertising execs who don’t listen to radio commercials and fast-forward through TV commercials. Right on, I thought; it would be like PR practitioners never reading press releases or examining media pitches.

But then he lost me. Big time. Durham suggested that advertising professionals who turn on spam blockers fall into the same category, adding that he pays attention to all his spam. (You’ll find the discussion at about 29 minutes into the podcast.)

I’m sure the sky is a very pleasant color on John’s planet. Here on Earth, though, nobody-not even an advertising executive-should feel compelled to slog through the hundreds of spam messages shoved down their pipes every day. For me, the average is about 500, the vast majority of which is caught by SpamSoap, the service I use that scrubs my email before it even gets to my server. I have no issue with any advertising exec who does the same.

Let’s be clear: If spam was legitimate advertising, it wouldn’t be called spam. There can be no benefit to reading a hundred come-ons for male organ enhancement, another hundred for mortgages, and 250 porn pitches, usually characterized by pathetic English because it was written by somebody from Romania with the barest of grasps on the language.

Advertising professionals need to pay attention to advertising. I agree that ad pros who fast-forward through TV commercials should probably consider a new line of work where they don’t hate what they do. But spam? Please.

Shel Holtz is principal of Holtz Communication + Technology which focuses on helping organizations apply online communication capabilities to their strategic organizational communications.

As a professional communicator, Shel also writes the blog a shel of my former self.

Work in Advertising? Read all of your Spam.
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