Many years ago, I remember then-client Tom Lewis of T.W. Lewis Company telling me that “you don’t know what a commitment to customer service is until you put your face on billboards.”
I guess the same can be said about “autographed model” products which should not be confused with celebrities who license their name to a product line or are paid to endorse a particular product.
A few years ago I won a bet in which I received a bottle of single malt Jack Daniels, a client of our Public Relations Global Network affiliate DVL Public Relations & Advertising in Nashville. The bottle was personally signed by the late master distiller Jimmy Bedford, which, in my mind, assured its quality.
My baseball equipment still includes a Cal Ripken, Jr., autographed model glove. I suppose that it is to inspire me to not make any errors and be a better quality defensive player – but since I’m a lefty and Ripken is right-handed, I’m not sure how that works, other than I still own the glove.
While touring Little Havana in Miami recently, I came across a guy named Pedro Bello Sr. Little did I know that he is a legendary tobacconist and owner of the cigar industry’s most prestigious Crystal Leaf Award. His son noted that the box of cigars I was considering purchasing from the Cuba Tobacco Cigar Co. was signed by his dad, who served as the store’s greeter. He wasn’t just blowing smoke when he explained that the only way to get a Bello’s signed cigar box was to buy it in person, because they discovered a few years ago that people were mail-ordering autographed cigar boxes and reselling them for three times their value! Apparently another instance where the signature says quality.
What other products have their quality legitimized, or guaranteed by the maker’s personal autograph?