Edward L. Bernays
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Carl R. Byoir
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Nuxated Iron

Following stints with a motion picture company, and an import/export business, Carl Byoir returned to what he knew best — sales and advertising.

Nuxated Iron was produced and sold by E. Virgil Neal whom Byoir asked for a sales job. Neal had no room for another salesman, so Byoir decided to prove himself by working without pay. Byoir bargained that if he succeeded in increasing the sales of Nuxated Iron in cities where it was sold, Neal would find him a job in the company.

Carl Byoir's technique was to monitor the stock on grocery store shelves, write advertisements that he thought would sell Nuxated Iron, and return to count the number sold. If sales increased he would move on to the next town. If the opposite occurred, he would stay in the city until he designed an advertisement that moved the product. Within weeks, Carl Byoir had increased the sales of Nuxated Iron and was hired as vice president and general manager of the company. Byoir stayed with the company until his health began to deteriorate in 1929.

Cuban Conflict

The climate in Cuba relieved Carl Byoir of his life-threatening sinus infections, and soon he was back to work. He leased two small newspapers: the Havana Post,a morning paper, and the Havana Telegram,an evening edition, whose audiences consisted of English-speaking Cuban residents and tourists from America. Byoir wanted to increase the circulation of his newspapers, but rather than find a standard marketing solution, he decided it would be better to increase the number of American tourists to Cuba.

Cuba in the late 1920s and early 1930s suffered under President Gerardo Machado. Not wanting to meddle in Cuban politics, but still desiring American tourists, Byoir struck a deal with Machado. The details of the agreement stated that if Byoir spent his own capital to increase tourism to Cuba, Machado would sign a five-year contract worth $300,000 to hire Carl Byoir & Associates as the public relations office for the Cuban government.

A large scale campaign to brand Cuba as a premier vacation spot was designed by the first members of Carl Byoir & Associates. Their strategic planning and good timing resulted in an increase from 80,000 tourists to 165,000 in a single year, and President Gerardo Machado became the first client of the newly formed public relations firm.

Byoir's association with Machado later cast a dark shadow on the reputation of his firm. The rumors and vehement criticism from the public often put Carl Byoir & Associates on the defensive long after Machado was overthrown in 1933.

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