During the next weekly marketing meeting it came out that this is what happened the last time TI ran a 1394 ad. The sales people complained that the ads were generating calls from companies that would never amount to significant business.
We'd generated awareness but among the wrong clientele.
I was reminded of what my B-to-B marketing professor had told the class years earlier. No person should ever go into marketing until he or she had spent some time in sales. Not only did the "engineers turned marketers" lack marketing experience but they lacked sales experience as well.
Suddenly, those dark months of my life I was not willing to share with anyone became valuable. I'd spent 9 months as a telemarketer, calling people at home during dinner every night, selling them something they didn't want and not taking "no" for an answer. Up to that moment, I was ashamed to let anyone know I'd been one of "those people." However, at the moment I learned that the 1394 marketing team had ignored the pleas of tech sales, I suddenly felt that I had yet one more advantage to help me in leading the group. I'd actually done sales and had been pretty good at it.
Moving forward from that day, we never ran another ad. We looked to more effective ways to get the message out. Moving forward, we targeted our promotional efforts to the right clientele.