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    They say that any advertising is good if your name is spelled right.  With a name like mine, perhaps this isn’t an arguement I should get into since no one ever spells my name right!  However a great man (Marshall McLuhan, Author of Understanding Media) once said that the medium is the message, and so the question remains- What message are you sending when your company gives SAK knockoffs?

This Classic Knockoff is plainly inferior, even to the untrained eye

    In the SAKtivities section a few weeks ago I posted a comparison between a promotional knockoff of a Classic next to the Real McCoy, and it prompted a pretty good response.  It seems that most folks agree with me when I say I am not impressed, nor inclined to use the services of a company that thinks so little of their customers as to give them these cheap pieces of garbage.  In fact, I refused to hand them out to customers of a company I used to work for simply because I didn’t ever want to be responsible for the image they promote.

This advertising knockoff might look nice enough at first glance, but see what happens when it was used!

    Of course, not everyone is a SAK junkie, like me, or probably you too if you are reading this!  Naturally some folks will pick up one of these and think about how thoughtful your company is when they first get it, but it usually isn’t very long before they fail.  The only good part of this situation is that the only thing shoddier than the knife itself is the application of your name and logo, so hopefully they won’t remember who gave it to them when it breaks on them!

The rivet popped out of this knockoff on one of the few times it was pressed into service

    We probably also all know someone who has carried one of these advertising cheapos for years and it’s never failed them.  As painful as it is to admit, it does happen, but then those folks probably never use them for anything more intense than opening the odd piece of mail.  They probably swear that it’s the most useful knife they have ever owned, and may even insist it’s a real Swiss Army Knife since it has the toothpick.  When I meet those folks I usually trade them a Classic for the cheapo and they always rave about it whenever I see them again!  Felinevet usually has a good supply and I stock up with every few orders.

Pretty is as pretty does according to the old saying.  Unfortunately, this one isn't as pretty as it once was!

    But, I am getting off topic.  Back to the matter at hand.  The advertising knockoffs aren’t restricted to Classic sized SAKs.  I was given a 91mm knockoff a few years ago, and I even tried to EDC it despite the poorly formed tools, and badly ground blades.  About the only nice thing about it was the wood scales, which quickly splintered and broke off.  Of course that couldn’t prepare me for what happened next- while trying to use the screwdriver, the pin broke, spraying tools all over the room!  I still have that knockoff somewhere, and even after all this time, I don’t even remember the company name cut into the wood!  So much for the adage of spelling the name right.  It’s spelled right, the knife was memorable but I haven’t got a clue who it was for.  In fact, I only know the company now since I dug the knife out to photograph for this article.  I did a web search and found no information on this company online, which means that this shoddy ad might have killed them.

    The bottom line is, when promoting your business, do it properly.  Either don’t skimp, or don’t do it.  Half assed advertising tells people you are a half assed organization.