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Don't Read This

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New York shop Della Femina, Rothschild, Jeary and Partners must be hoping reverse psychology will work in these tough times.

Its first campaign for Marsh & McLennan Cos. includes a full-page ad that broke last week in The Wall Street Journal and bears the copy?ostensibly written by MMC: "We're a Fortune 200 company. We're 130 years old. We do business in over 100 countries. Yet hardly anyone's heard of us. Maybe we should fire our advertising agency."

The shop came up with the ad after research showed people weren't as aware of MMC as they were of other financial companies.

"No one knows who they are, and the idea [for the work] came from thinking maybe someone should stand up and take the blame for that," said Michael Jeary, shop president.

No word if gullible ad agencies have attempted to contact MMC about its account, but James Tenny, shop partner and director of marketing, said he doubted that would happen.

"I would be surprised if people didn't understand [the ad] was done with tongue firmly planted in cheek," he said.

The campaign includes two more print ads and four TV spots.