Gordon & Grant
Redwood Hot Tubs
Mr. Gordon and Mr. Grant made luxury hot tubs and they wanted to expand their market. They were feeling competition from a San Luis Obispo company that was marketing hot tubs with a national magazine campaign. Gordon and Grant were dismissive of the quality of the mass-market tubs, but they wanted to increase sales and thought a magazine ad would help.
They didn't have the budget to run full-page ads in Playboy and Rolling Stone and National Lampoon like the competitor company, which was a sub-unit of the successful Warehouse Sound mail-order stereo operation.
In researching the product I found out that the mail-order hot tubs were tricky to set up. They weren't something you could assemble on your apartment deck on a Sunday afternoon. The target market would be home owners, first of all, and it would be futile to advertise in magazines aimed at twenty-something stoners.
I had some personal experience with hot tubs.I'd been attending hot tub parties in Santa Barbara for a couple years.The local hot tub guru was publisher Noel Young, who wrote a book about it under the pseudonym "Leon Elder," and I knew many of the people pictured in the book. So I knew about the luxurious sensuousness of the hot tub and I knew the strength of the mail-order company's campaign, whose headline was "The Hot Tub Experience" and showed a guy and a hot babe immersed in bliss.
I told Gordon and Grant they should advertise in swimming pool and plumbing trade magazines. Hot tubs were a new phenomenon, and it was our chance to explain everything and show the tradesmen how they could take advantage of the new craze and make money. Thus the ad, "Gordon and Grant Explain Redwood Tubs."
Thousands of coupons swamped Gordon and Grant.