The Untold Story of Bob Stupak
Behind every great entrepreneurial success story is an untold story – and it’s usually more interesting and a lot more inspiring. They all tend to have a few common elements, though.
One of which is ugly grunt work.
Take Bob Stupak, for example. A true renegade marketer. He took a one-floor, slots-only dump at the downtown end of the Strip and built it into the big, tall, flashy Vegas World Hotel & Casino, now called The Stratosphere…all without taking on any debt and building it one floor at a time as he had the cash to do it.
He generated cash by selling (via direct mail) pre-paid $399 vacation packages. His full-page ads for his Vegas World package featuring 2 nights’ lodging, meals, drinks, shows and $1,000 of ‘house money’ to gamble with for $399 were seen everywhere: Parade Magazine in Sunday newspapers, Playboy, TV Guide.
People on certain lists received elaborate direct-mail pieces selling the package, and over several years, millions of those sales letters were sent. His was and remains the only Las Vegas Strip hotel literally built by direct-response advertising.
NOW, THE UNTOLD STORY…
Where Bob got his most valuable prospect list that he mailed most aggressively to…
Every guest got a fancy welcome package, which included four full-color postcards with a photo of Vegas World and a display of One Million Dollars In Cash on one side. They were wrapped with a note telling guests to address them with notes to friends back home and drop them in the specially marked mail slot in the lobby – Bob even bought the stamps.
He did not mention he would copy down the names and addresses before mailing out the postcards. He did not mention that he would soon afterward mail a letter telling these folks that they were invited to get the same great vacation their friends had recently enjoyed for just $399, plus get a free spin of the Million Dollar Slot Machine and be guaranteed to at least win a diamond-like ring or a little color TV or some other nifty prize.
He mailed these prospects repetitively and persistently with a conversion rate upwards from 20%. So, if 300 guests turned in 4 postcards, that’s 1,200 fresh prospects every couple of days, about 15,000 fresh prospects a month for which NO COST was incurred in acquiring them but a postcard and a stamp. Pretty ingenious!
Labor intensive? Yep – but that’s the point. Renegade millionaires go to whatever trouble it takes to accomplish their goals – trouble that most people won’t touch. That’s the untold story of extraordinary achievement.
NOTHING ELEGANT. NOTHING EFFICIENT. JUST EFFECTIVE.
I am 55 years old, and I imagine my perception is skewed by age and life. But I still don’t think I’ve ever seen as many people in search of the mythical Easy Button at any other time of my life.
The explosion of accessible technology has acted like gasoline on this fire. But it doesn’t change the fact of society’s wealth pyramid: 1% rich at the top, 4% doing well, 15% doing okay, 80% doing poorly – principally because the 1% are willing to do a lot more, and a lot more troublesome stuff than the 80% are. While the 80% are hunting for Easy Buttons, the 1% are working.
If you’re the kind of small business owner that is willing to roll up their sleeves, get a little dirty, and get ‘er done…you’re who I want to work with on your marketing.
Seize the Day!
BTW – I can guarantee that we can show you how to get more traffic and grow your business more effectively than you are right now. Request a free automation consultation with one of our business strategists. No obligation – just some really great advice.