Pop Quiz: Internet Marketing

1. On which website would you be most likely to find an ad for used kitty litter?

  1. The Onion
  2. Craigslist
  3. Amazon.com
I prefer my cat litter new, thanks.

Figure 1. What’s wrong with this picture?

2. Take a moment to examine Figure 1. What’s wrong with this picture?

  1. In description on the left, the apostrophe is missing from the word “World’s”.
  2. The standard list price for cat litter is, apparently, $96.85 for a 7-pound bag or $109.47 for a 14-pound bag.
  3. Used kitty litter costs more than new kitty litter.
  4. Used kitty litter is being offered for sale.

3. Every two weeks, Alice’s cats convert 25 pounds of new cat litter into used cat litter. If Alice pays $9.99 for each 25-pound tub of new cat litter and sells her used cat litter at market rates, how much profit will she make in a year?

4. Alice wants to quit her job and live off her cat litter profits. She currently has two cats; how many more will she need to adopt?

5. What should Alice call her online store?

  1. The Cat Waste Place
  2. Alice’s Organic Free-Range Artisinal Feline Extrusion Emporium
  3. I Haz Had Cheezburger

Alice’s store turns out not to be as profitable as she’d hoped. She looks for ways to earn some extra income and decides to respond to this craigslist ad:

I have a terrible problem. My litter box is dirty and smells horrible and I don’t want to clean it. I am amazing at making pancakes however. I will trade my pancake skills for a clean litter box. Serious inquires only.

  • Location: bathroom corner
  • Compensation: pancakes. All you can eat!!!
  • This is an internship job

6. Essay question: describe the expected career path of the person who successfully completes this internship.

7. What’s unusual about this ad?

  1. It promises all-you-can-eat pancakes but doesn’t mention syrup.
  2. It doesn’t specify whether the pancakes must be consumed when the litter box is being scooped or whether the intern can show up at the employer’s home at any time and demand pancakes.
  3. It’s on craigslist, but it doesn’t say anything about the intern having to perform his or her duties naked.

8. What’s the probability that the person who placed the ad has at least one cat?

  1. 60%
  2. 40%
  3. 20%

22 comments on “Pop Quiz: Internet Marketing

  1. joehoover says:

    To think of all the litter i throw away, I could have been a millionaire

  2. Elyse says:

    Perhaps this opportunity will enable me to get over my hatred of litter boxes and actually get a cat. But then again, perhaps not.

  3. Roxie says:

    But, hey, it’s the WORLD’S BEST used kitty litter!

  4. And they said math isn’t important…or reading…
    (Oh to live among wide open fields instead of being boxed in!)

    • Laura says:

      Unfortunately, around here there are no wide open fields but plenty of cars and coyotes.

      • (giggles) Only the smart – and fast – survive?
        RC Cat is indoor paws only. It’s a bird sanctuary here, but distracted drivers just too common…the coyotes either stay in the wetlands/parks or the concrete parking garages downtown…really, they have adapted.

  5. pegoleg says:

    Amazing. Absolutely amazing. Looking at these examples of internet marketing, the one thing that immediately strikes you is this: the bigger bag of kitty litter is always the better deal.

    • Laura says:

      It’s true, even in local stores. My local pet store sells it in bulk. I get the 25-pound size, which is the second-best kitty litter deal in the store. (The best deal is the 35-pound size, but those are kind of unwieldy, at least for me).

      • pegoleg says:

        My husband buys the 60 pound bag of dog food at Costco and there’s no place to put it in our tiny kitchen. He set it on top of the dog food bin and the damn thing fell over last night. Scared the crap out of both me and the dog! Come to think of it, my brave watch dog let me go investigate first and only showed up to help with kibble-clean-up.

  6. List of X says:

    I think the problem with that litter/pancake job is that it’s only temporary one with no room for advancement. I’m looking to eventually move onto something more challenging like cleaning bathrooms and be compensated with least steaks.

  7. Theresa says:

    I’m not sure what upsets me more, that I got the answers to 1 and 2 wrong, or that the whole pancake-intern thing makes me think of the gimp in Pulp Fiction. Yeah, sorry for bringing that up. On another subject, Alice could call the store The Litterbug. Or GLitter Factory.

  8. I think the biggest problem is that SOMEONE IS BIDDING ON IT..

  9. I’m glad you pointed out the syrup thing. And I want to know what kind of pancakes.

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