homeless' cardboard signs serve as advertising media

Seattle times reports : In what advertising industry watchers said is a first, a Portland pizza-by-the-slice company has hired homeless people off downtown sidewalks to take part in a guerrilla marketing campaign. They are paid in pizza, soda and a few dollars.

The signs were meant to be humorous, said Andre Jehan, the owner and founder of Pizza Schmizza, a 26-restaurant company operating in Oregon and Washington.

Kipp Cheng, a spokesman for the American Association of Advertising Agencies, said he'd never heard of the tactic before, but wasn't surprised. From the sandwich board to cigarette girls to aerial banners, companies are forever searching for creative means to convey their messages to consumers, he said.

clayton: anyone else feel reminded of the depression-era style billboards proclaiming "Eat at Joe's"?