The Daily Marvel and the invisible fish

"Any retailer who doesn't believe in good advertising can perhaps be likened to the man who winks in the dark.  Only he knows what he's doing!

In the Man's shop our windows ran along Koroit St from the Liebig St corner for about one hundred feet.  The last little window was a long way from the corner.  We thought we should use it as a magnet to attract shoppers past the fine new display windows in between.  Thus was FJs Daily Marvel born - it held public interest and worked effectively for us for twenty-two years."  

The 'Daily Marvel' is from the early retail days of FJ.  Each day for 22 years the 'Daily Marvel' - a four inch single column or two inch double column- would appear in the Warrnambool Standard in the same place on the same page every morning.  "A marvel a day keeps the dead stock away" said Fletcher.  The marvel would also be placed in the Man's Shop window with the "famous oscillating arrow jumping up and down in the little window" to attract customers. 

"Once we put a large globular clear glass fish bowl in the window.  We filled it with water and we kept the water crystal clear.  In front of the bowl we placed a sign saying 'The Invisible Fish from the Timor Sea.'  Many a man was seen down on his haunches on the footpath peering into the bowl and exclaiming with surprise that the fish really were invisible.  Customers enjoyed our fun.  They appreciated the light touch." 

Fletcher Jones, Not By Myself.  Chapter 21,The Daily Marvel  Wentworth Press, 1976 




Fletcher Jones , second from left - marketing in the 30s.  Photo: Jones Family Collection
The Man's Shop windows - post war lighting.  Photo: Jones Family Collection

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