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The Truth About What Customers Want by Michael R. Solomon

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Chapter 49. Turn a (pet) rock into gold

In the early 1980s, Cabbage Patch dolls were all the rage among American children. Faced with a limited supply of the product, some retailers reported near-riots among adults as they tried desperately to buy the dolls for their children. A Milwaukee DJ jokingly announced that people should bring catcher’s mitts to a local stadium, because an airplane was going to fly overhead and drop 2,000 dolls. He told his listeners to hold up their American Express cards so their numbers could be photographed from the plane. More than two dozen anxious parents apparently didn’t get the joke; they showed up in subzero weather, mitts in hand.

The Cabbage Patch craze lasted for a couple of seasons before it eventually died ...

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