How a Guy's Last Name Generated $250,000 in Sales and $6,000,000 in Media Impressions for One Lucky San Francisco Company
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- When Headsets.com's chief financial officer wanted to spend up to $50,000 to win an online auction to have Internet Advertising Entrepreneur Jason Sadler change his name to Jason HeadsetsDotCom, the company president thought he was nuts. However, Headsets.com won the auction and Jason Sadler became Jason Headsetsdotcom on January 1, 2013.
Since then, the ensuing publicity for Headsets.com has resulted in nearly $250,000 in sales and just over $6 million of advertising impressions in less than two months, so President Mike Faith is a happy man.
"We had CNN, CNBC.com, Fox News and dozens of local stations covering the story," said Faith, whose company carries the largest inventory of brand-name headsets as well as their own line of wireless office headsets, called the OfficeRunner. "We've had hundreds of people call and email their best wishes after seeing the story on TV, the Huffington Post, CNNMoney.com, Tech Crunch and other social media web sites."
The resulting publicity equates to just over $6 million in free publicity according to a Media Analysis Report compiled by Universal Information Services.
"The $45,500 we paid to buy Jason's last name equates to $900 a week, or $125 a day," said Faith whose company generated $30 million in sales annually. "That's incredibly cheap for the $6 million value of coverage we've already had on this. We're calling Jason our Six Million Dollar Man."
The story started last November when the former Jason Sadler, known as the guy who gets paid to wear a t-shirt to promote a different company every day, decided to sell his last name to the highest bidder.
"Earlier this year my mom let me know that she'd be going through a divorce, and as soon as I found that out, as harsh as it sounds, the last name "Sadler" pretty much lost all meaning to me. You see, Sadler isn't my mom's name, and it isn't my biological last name. I've actually had three different last names over the course of my life. Some people may consider this selling out, but I think I've just found the next logical step for my online brand," said Jason.
He came up with the auction idea to raise capital for his start-up, and donated 10% of the final auction price to the non-profit Cheerful Givers.
The marketing vice president at Headsets.com thought it was a brilliant idea and joined the bidding, which had reached $35,000 at that point from 18 different companies.
"I didn't want to do it at first. But it was a brilliant advertising tactic. It just goes to show how wrong I can be on some things," Faith said.
Jason engineered the tactics to get the media to write about the auction.
He first contacted a friend who owned a PR firm. That led to CNN covering the story. Then he worked his own contacts of reporters, editors, bloggers and social media mavens.
"He's a brilliant marketer," Faith said. "We are going to put him on our marketing advisory board."
Jason plans to blog, do social media and appear at conferences such as SWSX on behalf of the company. "We'll also be putting up content," he said.
As to how Headsets.com the company will leverage Jason Headsets.com the personality in the future, that remains to be seen.
"It's a one-year deal. We'd love to do it again next year, but I have a funny feeling its going to cost a lot more. I'm afraid we are going to be priced out," Faith said.
Headsets.com is America's leading provider of office telephone headsets carrying the largest inventory of headsets and accessories from industry leaders like Sennheiser, Plantronics, and Jabra, as well as featuring the Executive Pro line.
Mike Faith, President and CEO, started the company in 1997 when he wanted to increase his productivity with a telephone headset, but couldn't find a good resource for them.