Birthday Advertising

How many companies collect date of birth as part of their registration process? You have submitted yours to at least a few dozen, but possibly hundreds, from MySpace and IM programs to banks, dentists and retirement plans. How easy is it for them to set up a small script that would send a "Happy Birthday" email to each client once a year? Very easy. Maybe an e-card. Or even a coupon or two.

This is so obvious that I thought everyone was doing it and it wasn't worth writing about. Apparently not -- Cirque de Soleil's was the only e-card I got (a few weeks ago, but it only occurred to me now) from someone to whom I am a customer. Of course, I'm not horribly offended by this lack of attention, but the Cirque's card was a very memorable even if auto-generated touch.


  1. I thought the same when TIM (my mobile carrier here in Italy) sent me an happy birthday sms.

    It's nice to know that someone (somescript) is thinking of you ;-)


  2. I've thought the same thing, too. It's so true. Every time I enter my b-day I wonder if they'll send me something.

  3. I track more than 100 of the top online retailers' email marketing campaigns through my blog ( and birthday emails are rare among retailers as well. Macy's and Circuit City are the only major retailers that currently do it. A few other major retailers collect dates of birth for "compliance reasons" but choose not to send birthday well-wishes.


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