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Maxwell Sackheim - Marketing Master

NEW YORK -- Do you practice these billion dollar marketing tactics?

• My First 65 Years in Advertising
• Maxwell Sackheim's Billion Dollar Marketing Concepts and Applications

Maxwell Sackheim was born in 1890 in Kovna, Russia, but he came to the United States at an early age with his family. As a little boy, Sackheim did not like school at all and only sports could attract his attention.

However, he began to appreciate good reading and writing, after he received a set of Shakespeare books from his mother on his 16th birthday.

Sackheim started his career in advertising as an errand boy at the Long-Critchfield agency in Chicago.

While working at the Long-Critchfield, an agency specializing in agricultural industry, Sackheim learned how to write advertising copy. His wrote his first advertising copy in 1906 for Kendall Company's Spavin Cure product for saving horses. Soon he also did some copywriting of mail-order advertising for farm products such as horse collars, manure spreaders, incubators and stump pullers.

Sackheim worked as an assistant advertising manager at Sears, Roebuck and Company in 1913, then moved to J. Walter Thompson in 1914, and then Ruthrauff and Ryan, where he met his future partner of Sackheim and Scherman advertising agency, Harry Scherman.

Sackheim joined Brown Fence and Wire Company in Cleveland, Ohio as advertising manager, after he and Scherman sold their agency to Victor Schwab and Robert Beatty. Sackheim stayed in Brown Fence and Wire until 1944 and became president. He founded his own agency, Maxwell Sackheim and Company, in 1945, a year after he moved back to New York.

Maxwell Sackheim was a creative thinker who invented many successful advertising concepts in direct response advertising history. Two of his best-known marketing concepts are the "Book-of-the-Month Club" and the "Negative Option Plan."

The "Book-of-the-Month Club" was derived from Little Leather Library, developed by Sackheim and his partner Harry Scherman in 1914. They offered a set of 30 imitation leather-bound books at a price of $2.98 by mail. In the headline of an ad, it said "SEND NO MONEY! " They sold 40 million books by mail in 3 years.

In 1926, they formed Book-of-the-Month Club to sell books on a subscription basis. However, the business was not doing very well in its infancy; many books were returned or canceled.

They decided to change the plan and created the "negative option plan":

Subscribers were notified in advance about the next book, giving them a detailed description of it and allowing them two weeks to reply. If subscribers did not tell them "No" within two weeks, they would presume that subscribers were saying "Yes" and sent out the book. This idea has built many mail-order companies into multimillion enterprises.

The most famous ad Sackheim ever wrote was the "Do you make these mistakes in English?" for Sherman Cody’s English course. It ran for 40 years, always making a profit. The headline contains the word "you" and it offers value (a free lesson in English).

Sackheim retired to Clearwater, Florida in 1960 and died in 1982 at the age of 92.

The only way to learn from the best is to study real examples of his work. Here are a few headlines from the Maxwell Sackheim's work.

These are the advertisements that built huge businesses. Read the entire ads,  View every word at It is free for a limited time.

Since I study all the great marketing and advertising gurus from the past for a living, you can guess I know what works and what doesn't . But there is only one that has made me serious money. Click here to who.

View Maxwell Sackheim's Ads at






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