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Billy Mays has always been one of my marketing heroes. He was such a phenomenal pitchman that he could sell anything. But he didn't. OxiClean works. Mighty Putty works. Hell, even that crazy little cellphone transmitter, the Jupiter Jack, works. I know. Angus and I each have one in our vehicles.
Billy pitched very few food items, but he did help you get your grubby little hands on the Big City Slider Station. He was also about to launch a major ad campaign with the fast food giant Taco Bell.1
What made Billy special was that he was able to carry on the tradition of the man on the soapbox and still move merchandise that was worth what you paid for it. Having spent over twenty years in the advertising industry, I can tell you from experience that most of the time you DON'T get what you pay for. In his own words "Billy Mays doesn't sell snake oil!"2
Billy Mays - 1958-2009
Enjoy some great moments with our favorite fast-talking carnivore, Billy Mays:
Click here to watch the classic video of Billy ordering at McDonald's drive-thru in Tampa, Florida, for the MJ Morning Show (93.3 WFLZ).
Click here to watch the Big City Slider Station spot.
1. Todd "MJ" Schnitt, MJ Morning Show (93.3 WFLZ)
2. Pitchmen, Episode 3, Discovery Channel, April 29, 2009