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The story goes back about 20+ years when I decided to hire one of my clients (a Director of Human Resources) to work for me at my small strategy firm in Boston. Smack in the middle of the dot com boom we found ourselves in the midst of developing what seemed to be an endless series of recruiting strategies for Fortune 500 companies, medium size organizations and startups looking to compete for talent with the big boys. Back then, if you knew C++ or Java, you could pretty much write your own ticket.

On her first day in the office, she walked up to me and asked “So… how do we develop a strategy?” I responded with… “Well, that all depends on what you’re after.” She then said… “Okay, why don’t we develop a strategy to generate more business!” I must say I liked her thinking.

Considering that she was a former HR professional; and recruitment strategies were in such high demand, we decided to stay the course and target 100 HR and TA professionals at companies who we knew were aggressively recruiting. To make a long story short, we gathered the email addresses of these decision makers and sent them an email that simply read… “You have to check this out, you’ll just die:”

When they clicked on the link, they were introduced to a simple animated message that stated the following… The point is, you’re here. What if it was this easy to get the talent that you are looking for to come to you? It’s all about developing effective recruiting strategies. And it’s what we do.”

The simple campaign resulted in 86 out of the 100 professionals clicking on the link. Now, we realized that this could have gone one of two ways. For one, they could have taken offense to it and felt duped, that is if they didn’t believe that what they found was worth their while. Fortunately for us, the second possibility was the resounding response. Our point was effectively made and meetings to discuss business were being set at a feverish pace. In fact, we lived off the response from this simple exercise for more than two years and developed several long-term relationships as a result.

So, why Marketing Without Pants? Well… you’re here, aren’t you?


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