Seventy years ago this month, Olson Radio Warehouse had a promotional idea that would probably be regarded as somewhat on the politically incorrect side today. To encourage radio servicemen to order parts and supplies, they instituted the Gift of the Month Club. When the serviceman placed an order, Olson would toss in a free gift. And they kicked the program off by giving away free cigarettes! That’s right: When the serviceman ordered tubes or resistors, Olson would throw in a pack of Camels, Chesterfields, or Luckies!
This piece of trade news appeared in the May 1947 issue of Radio Service Dealer. It reveals that, as of press time, Olson had handed out a quarter million free smokes.