The Stockmarket Confidential advertisement appeared in the financial pages of the national newspapers in the 1980s.
The man who invented the standing order, Sylvester Stein, made his fortune with a unique approach. He promoted his newsletters with an introductory half-price offer that was really a way of building in a price rise for the second year.
Unlike todayâ€™s direct debits, it is not possible to increase a standing order payment without the subscriber completing a new form. Sylvesterâ€™s â€˜half price offerâ€™ was a disguised way of boosting revenue and getting around the problem of the high inflation that existed at that time.
Looking at the coupon, it looks as though the publisher is offering the reader an irresistible bargain instead of a huge price hike.
Created by Jonathan Self who ran a direct marketing agency at that time, this advertisement appeared in 1985 and was the most successful advertisement run by Stonehart Publications at that time. It has not really been bettered since.
Click on the link below to view the full-size advertisement:
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