A few years ago at a magazine strategy day I came up with the flippant suggestion that to promote regular reading of the magazine we produced a bit-part series that would let the reader build their own reseller.
Inspired by the Nelson's Victory series that means a reader ends up spending hundreds on pounds to build a balsa wood model of a ship that would have cost a fraction of the price bought fully made in a model shop the idea seemed simple.
Week by week different parts of a shop front dealer would be provided, from the front of the store through to the shop and then the back office where the crucial numbers were crunched and the deliveries were taken.
They laughed at me then and they might well have been laughing yesterday as I went from one branch of WHSmith to another trying to find the Lego figures that came free with the Mirror.
Newspaper promotions do work, with the Lego offer selling out at three branches of Smith's until I finally tracked it down to the fourth and final branch in my area. I have never been so determined to get the Mirror or have spent so much on that paper until this week.
Perhaps it is time to get the old jigsaw saw out, get some balsa wood and start to produce the first click together parts of a series of 100 in the build your own reseller promotion. We will see who's laughing then.
This was first published in October 2010