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The Man Who Made Millions by Selling Rocks as Pets

The Man Who Made Millions by Selling Rocks as Pets
Gary Ross Dahl, who died earlier this year at age 78, will always be remembered for inventing the "Pet Rock", a 1970s toy craze department. The brilliant salesman sold True rocks for a living, and managed to make millions through its "ridiculously successful marketing techniques."

Even I started His career as an advertising copywriter, entrepreneur Change When Dahl turned his notion of selling pet rocks took off. It all started one night in the mid-'70s, while having a drink at a local bar in Los Gatos, California. People around him are talking about pets, and about how difficult it is to feed, walk and clean up after them.

Struck by sudden inspiration, Dahl stated that he had no such problem with his own pets. "I have a pet rock," I told the crowd. And his response was received so well that I began to toy with the idea of ​​eventually setting up a business around it.

Dahl found two investors, visited a building supply store, and bought a box of Mexican beach smooth stone for a penny apiece. I know that all I need is to pack each stone beautiful, and they want to sell for a lot more than it was previously valued. After much trial and error, I finally designed a smart cardboard carrying case, complete with air holes for the 'pet' to breathe. The stone is gentle nestled inside the box, on a bed of softwood shavings.

Also added a handbook for good measure, which later proved to be a stroke of genius. Containing instructions on the care, feeding, and house training Pet Rocks This little book. "If, when you remove the stones from the STI box and it appears to be excited, to put it in some old newspapers," it read. "Rock will know what the role is for and will require no further instruction. It Stay on paper until you move it."

It is this Manual Randy managed to catch the attention of millions, the Pet Rock constructing a nation-wide phenomenon. Dahl's timing was impeccable, rock HAD hit the market at the right time. The Vietnam War and Watergate ended HAD begins. "There was a whole lot of bad news going on," I told the Houston Chronicle in 1999. "People are down. It's not a really good time for the national psyche. I think the Pet Rock is just a good giggle. Everyone who needed a good laugh and the media ate it up. "

Then releases STI during Christmas 1975, Dahl worked up to half of the storm, even earning a place in the legendary Tonight Show. Within a few months, 1.5 million rocks are sold at $ 3.95 apiece, and the demand is higher than ever. "I had a phone in each ear," Dahl recalled an interview in 2011. "I taught my PR guy to pretend with me so I could answer my call" Sales Successfully wonderful for a while -. Dahl moved to a big house with a swimming pool and traded his Honda to Mercedes.

But his success was too good to last long. As reported by the New York Times, "the simplicity of his incredible proved its undoing." I even had the name of His trademarked product, I can not stop others from selling stones in a box. Lots of people did just that, and took his concept to new levels. There Bicentennial Rock, etched in the American flag. And someone began offering college degrees for Pet Rocks, and $ 3 for a bachelor and $ 10 for a Ph.D. Business Dahl began to suffer, and in the late '70s, I was sued by his investors and ended up paying them six figure judgment.

With the money I earned His Pet Rock business, Dahl and his wife designed and built the Carry Nations Saloon in Los Gatos. He later returned to advertising, and even wrote a book called Advertising for Dummies, published in 2001. But I always remembered for the Pet Rock phenomenon. Earned him a good measure of wealth and fame, and he made wary by hordes of inventor who thronged him for advice.

"There's a bizarre lunatic fringe who feel I owe them a living," Dahl told AP in 1988. "Sometimes I look back and wonder if my life would not have been simpler if I had not done it." Agreed to his wife: "Over time, however, people came to him with strange ideas, relying on him to do for them what I HAD done himself. And a lot of times They are really, really stupid idea, "he said.

"I'm sick of the whole damn thing," I told the Houston Chronicle.

The Man Who Made Millions by Selling Rocks as Pets

The Man Who Made Millions by Selling Rocks as Pets

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