Look at me! I’m a walking billboard!

For most of my adult career, I worked in the television business, so ultimately my salary was paid by advertising revenue. Since I understand the value of advertising, I don’t understand why so many people are willing to just give it away for free. You can’t walk down the street without seeing companies like American Eagle, Nike, Aeropostale, receiving massive amounts of free exposure on the chests, heads and butts of people everywhere.

Recently, I was talking to a friend of mine about golf/polo shirts. I mentioned that I usually bought mine at a small chain clothing store. Their store-brand shirts are relatively inexpensive; well made; stood up well to repeated washings; and their knit collars didn’t do that crease-thing that many others do. He commented that he usually paid so much for his shirts, “…but I am willing to pay a little more for a designer brand with their logo in it.”

That’s what I don’t understand. I’d pay a little more to NOT have a logo on the shirt.

With another friend, I commented on the “Columbia” printed across the front of the cap he was wearing. I questioned it, because I knew he had gone to a New York university, but not Columbia.

“Oh, no. That’s not Columbia University. That’s the name of the company who made the hat.”

Duh. Silly me.

Actually, rather than worrying about the trend, I really should just admire the companies involved. They have not only convinced the American public they should provide free advertising for them, they have also convinced them to pay a premium price to do so. Nice scam. Wish I had thought of it.

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