Virgil Winston: Marketing Guru

It’s cold and flu season again and that means the Winston household is on full germ alert. Mrs. Winston is a virus vigilante and prides herself on keeping the family fit as a fiddle throughout the season. The moment anyone crosses our garland festooned threshold, they are greeted with a cheery, “Don’t forget to wash your hands” before being offered a beverage or freshly baked holiday cookie. The refrigerator is stocked with orange juice and no one is allowed to eat breakfast until they’ve popped a multi-vitamin washed down with a glass of Emergen-C infused water. Our cupboards are stocked with every homeopathic remedy known to man and she has placed a family wide ban on handshakes and hugs with anyone who even looks like they may have sneezed in the last week. We have all had our flu shots but that does not mean my wife will let her guard down for an instant. She won’t relax until we are well into spring, or what I like to call, “allergy season.”

Since we go through almost as much hand sanitizer as a mid-sized hospital, I have decided to turn my wife’s anti-germ obsession into a marketing opportunity, so the hand sanitizer we use everyday is imprinted with my logo and a pithy message about cleanliness. Thanks to Mrs. Winston’s germ phobia and my promotional marketing acumen, my brand is spreading faster than you can say, “rhinovirus.” The marketing lesson here is simple—when choosing a promotional item, go with the flow. If everyone is sniffling and sneezing, give them a health related promotional gift and they will thank you with every “achoo.”

I’ve got to take the car in for a check-up—Mrs. Winston has put the kibosh on air travel so I am driving 600 miles to my next speaking engagement. Until next time, I leave you with Erma Bombeck’s rule of Medicine, “Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.”