Massive design FAIL

This morning we learned our termite contract had lapsed, much to our surprise (and, much to our chagrin, very late in the process of selling the house). The realtor reminded me the contracts require payment every year, for which the companies come out and poke a flashlight under the house to scare away the spiders. I vaguely remember hearing this four years ago when Serfco treated the Hygge and Fika.

After hearing this I talked on the phone to Serfco and received confirmation that the company sends out a bill after the first year. Followed by two reminders. But we never got a bill, or at least neither the wife — who’s very administrative along these lines — or I remember getting a bill, let alone two follow up pieces of mail.

The Serfco rep I talked to this morning admitted the bill they mail out looks basically just like junk mail. FAIL. Why, pray tell, why? Yes, the wife and I are human and occasionally forget something, however I’m pretty convinced we never actually received any of the aforementioned mail from Serfco. At this point there’s nothing we can do about that one way or another, but a bill that looks like junk mail? That’s bad business (surely it’s in their best interest to keep customers paying, since if the first year bill isn’t paid the policy is simply canceled), and terrible design.


How many Serfco bills ended up in Burtonwood and Holmes’ Junk Mail Tank?

On the flipside, here’s an old post briefly examining a piece of junk mail I received that worked.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at

One Response to Massive design FAIL

  1. Tobias says:

    This reminds me of all the times business e-mail gets put in the junk box. Of course, that’s hard to get right sometimes anyway, but designing a mailed bill to look like junk mail has to be the biggest waste of company funds ever!

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