Advice for Big Penis: take note of the entire message

Originally posed September 2011

I’ve had a lot of email offers in the past week for “gentleman’s enlargement”, a truly delightful euphemism. And since I am a sucker, and not too security conscious, I actually opened one this morning.

The text was a sea of lovely expressions dodging around the actual subject. It promised nothing but alluded to so much. It reminded me of those faded retro advertising posters from the innocent days between the wars.

The effect however was destroyed – I’m amazed no one in marketing picked this up – by the fact the mail came from the account of Big Penis, which in my Outlook display where the subject line followers the sender, appears as: Big Penis “Gentleman’s Enlargement” (their use of capitalisation).

So what was the point of this artfully crafted text that lifted what can be a sleazy subject into the realms of poetry (ok, laying it on a bit thick here) when it was introduced with the blunt description Big Penis. To set the record straight, I see nothing wrong with the word penis but someone, somewhere, had made the conscious decision not to use such language in the sales pitch itself.

If there is a lesson to be learned in all of this, it’s probably that all parts of the communication process must be aligned if the underlying message is to be believable.

Or, if you know me better than that, it’s a very good excuse to put penis in a headline.

Posted in Clear communication, Things to avoid

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