No one can ever accuse the folks at Sterling Marketing & Advertising of being shy.
The Greenville, S.C., shop wanted to submit an ad to its local chamber of commerce magazine, Outlook, with a big, bold, black headline reading: "Why Greenville advertising sucks." The copy in the print piece made the point that those seeking "hard-hitting advertising" should call Sterling. Not surprisingly, it was rejected.
"The ad is not directed at any other agency in particular, but at the general climate of advertising in Greenville," said Sterling creative director Woody Carlson, "which is, in our opinion, mundane and sophomoric."
Undaunted, Sterling submitted another ad to the magazine, which did run. Its message? "Our agency's ad was so powerful they wouldn't let us run it. For your free copy, call our number."