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How DIRECT Marketing and Mail Techniques…

Direct-Removal_v1Can Directly Inspire Your Sales Team!

Direct marketing, but more specifically using direct mail, seems to fall into one of two categories: selling something today or setting the stage for selling something tomorrow or in the near future.

You don’t need to do all the selling in one day when DIRECT Marketing techniques are used to nudge along a prospect.

I’m not writing about a commodity product, such as shaving cream or a canister of coffee, or a service, such as lawn cutting. Either one can be had in a short walk or a quick phone call.

I’m writing about business-to-business or B2B companies who have a short or long lead time to make a sale. Either way, it pays you go DIRECTLY to the right people.

Setting the stage.

Imagine you are selling a specific product to Boeing for a new Air Force fighter plane. Once you get approval and finally sell the parts to Boeing, your then five-yearCowboyv2 old is now eight or entering high school.

This “setting the stage” is called lead generation…and it’s what DIRECT mail does with remarkable efficiency and finesse. Sometimes lead generation can be a simple, single-step activity such as:

  • A solo invitation to attend an event
  • Request a free sample
  • Or register online for this or that

What if you have a new technology product or app you’re trying to convince people to buy?

Engaging with the right people can be humbling for a lot of people. When you’re trying to create a relationship or deal with educating your market about a complex product or service, lead generation is a multi-step activity. Never move on to the next phase until you conclude the present one is correct.

TargetUrCustomersMail is a motivator even if the conversation changed to another channel.

When you use the mail and get a response… then you mail (or deploy or fulfill) again and they respond again… and so on. Eventually, you have assembled enough information to confirm you are on the right track.

DIRECT Marketing Mail, when used correctly, is a strong motivator to get the recipient to read all of the copy or simply skim the paragraph headings. The recipient may then decide to save the mail piece even if his interest does not create an immediate response.

DIRECT marketing mail techniques – copywriting – to design – to the call to action or offer – has everything you need to set the table for a purchase.

Add additional communication channels.

As you add additional communications channels that the potential buyer is keen on using, to finally receiving a response, they’re saying to you, “I’m interested… I’m listening.” Each time a prospect responds, they’re saying to you, “I’m qualified.”

And each time a prospect responds, you move closer to a sale… and more efficiently because you spend time with those prospects that are the most interested and qualified… and potentially most eager, ready, and willing to buy.

Using DIRECT Marketing fundamentals and techniques across all communication channels is the key to your success. And to keep your sales team running smoothly.

Additional posts and articles to read more about DIRECT Marketing Mail – the Motivator:

pointersBOffer something of value free is a difference maker in lead generation.

 

 

How To Write Copy That Drive Sales

DrivingSales

 

 

 

 

Design and Copy: Winning DIRECT marketing is all coordination

copy_vs_design_thumb.png

 

 

 

 

Comments are cheerfully welcomed and responded to!!!

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email, Our Point Of View.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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How To Get The Answers To Your Most Burning Consumer Questions…

FourRoundWebIconsFiveThat Drives More Information About Your Customers and Prospects!

Direct marketers know that personalization is more than a name. In the digital age, consumers expect you to know a bit more than just a name.

Last week’s post, “Three Basic Personalization Trends That Can Make…” illustrated that point, but particularly, the first point, ACCURACY. Call someone the wrong name or send them the wrong product color and watch how fast your face can turn red with embarrassment.

Three easy steps to start your march toward accuracy.

  • If you really want to know about your customers use my stealth approach; ask them.
  • If you want to know what other offerings your customers may want, use the cloak and dagger method; ask them.
  • If you want to know what prospective customers think or what they are looking for; you ask them.

It sounds simple enough, but customer opinion surveys are one of the most overlooked marketing tools. Why, you ask? When was the last time you answered one Contactquestion for a company you do business with?

The key in that sentence is the word and meaning of one. Ask one question at a time.

Let us look at a few samples and present a few ideas to make your survey mean something to the recipient and to you as well.

Customer Satisfaction Survey.

Customer Satisfaction surveys allow you to discover how customers feel about the way you are conducting business. They are most successful when some questions allow for “rankings,” so that you have specific results to compare.

For example, “on a rating of one to five, with one being poor, three OK and five excellent, how do you rate our service preformed at your location, on May 13, at 1:00 PM?

These questions are also quick to complete, but just to make sure, in your introduction, give them the approximate time they’ll need to finish the survey. If someone wants to vent or express their gratitude, leave a comment section in each question, but as optional.

Your best success with these type of questions is no more than three questions or a completion time of 30 seconds or less.

The word survey in the section heading was not crossed out by mistake. The word survey means a lot of time and questions to most people. Since people place a high value on their time, don’t try to infringe on their time.

Additional Ideas.

locationIn a service call, train your service staff to get answers to questions you need for better marketing. This is a good place to ask a few open-ended questions. Plus, face-to-face usually gives you more answers about your customers.

In addition, train your service staff to “look” for additional clues, such as color scheme or the age of other home equipment to aid the accuracy of future marketing communications.

These types of questions are also good for collecting information you do not have, such as an email address or another demographic segment you may need for your database.

Another sure way to increase the response is to offer something free or a discount on their next purchase.

Summary.

These are just a few ideas. Depending on your business, you may find other questions to ask in a customer satisfaction survey.

FAQeFor instance, when using a customer-centric marketing strategy, an organization differentiates their customers in order to send relevant messages to their customers and gather additional data.

Remember that your customers are individuals. They represent different levels of value and they have different needs. It’s in your company’s best interest to gather customer information.

You need to ask them for their opinions and analyze their answers in order to differentiate among them. Plus, the most important attribute of customer data – ACCURACY!

Additional posts and articles to read more about collecting consumer data:

Three Basic Personalization Trends That Can Make… or disconnect your consumers marketing communication channels.”

Why Use A Customer-Centric Marketing Strategy… because it can make your brand image work in many different ways.

Thinking More About Adding a Customer-Centric Marketing Strategy?

7 Ways to Move Your Consumers to Purchase More.

Comments are cheerfully welcomed and responded to!!!

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email, Our Point Of View.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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Three basic personalization trends that can make…

PersonalizationW

or disconnect your consumers marketing communication channels.

When it comes to using personalization with other direct marketing tactics and channels – there is a chance to embarrass yourself and your company – and bringing about a response that is entirely opposite the one you were hoping for. Here are three basic personalization trends to check for potential disconnects.

1. Accuracy

Accuracy is the single most critical element when it comes to personalization. There is nothing more unbelievable when a message arrives personalized incorrectly. Receiving such a marketing message is an immediate turn off for many readers.

Consequently, do everything in your power to get your information right. When you’re not sure about a name or spelling, or any variable data, you have options:

  • Hope the data is right
  • Use personalization in moderation
  • Or not at all.

Before you answer, put yourself in the reader’s shoes. When you make a mistake once, maybe it’s only a typo, and then you can be forgiven. But when you make the same mistake a dozen times in the same correspondence, your error is blatant. It can also mean your marketing era at your present company is toast.

2. Personalization Goes Beyond the Name

Direct marketers today know that personalization is more than a name. When people think about personalization, they usually always think about names. In the digital age, your consumers expect you to know a little bit more than just a name.

Personalization can include any information that could be helpful to increase your marketing activity. Obvious fields could be birthdays, name of spouse, nickname, hobbies, vehicle make and model, lease termination date, education level, memberships in organizations, and so on. Think color in this area as well, especially if it is a special event.

The technology available today is more powerful than the past. Your customer service team can add a few other ideas about personalization that may have a bigger than expected outcome. It could be as simple as where to leave the package on delivery. Leave it somewhere else and the customer will find another company.

3. Never Stop Evaluating Your Data

Continually add to the good data you already have. Every time you come in contact with a consumer, use this opportunity to learn more –– and add what you learn to your database.

I’ve seen way too many marketing communications ruined by poor and out of date data. Every company needs to have a person make the data decisions. If a consumer has not made a recent purchase that goes beyond the norm, this data person notifies the customer service team to find out why. Whatever the results happen to be, the customer service rep forwards the new info to the head of data.

Don’t forget to your data analytics program. Data analytics not only shows you how consumers react to landing pages and social media messages, it is able to increase personalization accuracy and give you additional ideas for future testing.

Conclusion

The recent surge in mobile advertising opens up another channel for your customers to purchase your goods. Keep track of the data collected from mobile buyers. It’s just another way that technology is evolving that eventually affects your future marketing efforts.

A few other posts to assist you with data integrity.

How to Create A Marketing List Of Contacts

The Seven Golden Rules Using Direct Marketing

Big Data or Small Data: Either one is useless without good data management

Comments are cheerfully welcomed and responded to!!!

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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Smart Strategies to Awaken Your Business…

Strategy-W

And to Fire Up Your Employees!

With the proliferation of content encircling the earth, I know it’s hard to believe everything you read and if you’re like me, I quickly decide if there is any value before I move on to something else.

What does raise a red flag about an article or post is if the title includes the word “tip” and “marketing” in a headline.” Don’t get me wrong, an occasional tip can enlighten many people, but not every tip offers value to all.

There are many tips offered to any small business marketer on how to better market their product and services. Here’s another point. Google the phrase “small business marketing tips.” My search disclosed over 85 million and it only took .27 seconds to build their list.

If marketing was easy, I’d have nothing to write about.

Because there are so many variables involved in marketing to your customers, one wrong “tip” used in your marketing can significantly ruin the response. Then on top of that, add in the “human element.” Depending on the type of day that customer is experiencing, your marketing message can be totally ignored.

The one constant I have always seen in successful business people is a vision and a focus to make their vision a reality. In today’s marketing it’s a must for every team member to have a vision and determined to find the right path to get them there.

If you need assistance to find the correct path, may I suggest you decide on a marketing strategy for guidance? I’ve listed a few marketing strategies for you to consider. If you like, develop a hybrid strategy of more than one strategy. Remember to keep the strategy short, sweet and right to the point – a path to reach your goal. Add on to your strategy as you use it and learn a few ideas. Many people get bogged down in their development of a strategy, that it never gets completed.

Can A Marketing Strategy Lead You Down the Right Path to the Right Customer?

A successful approach to a marketing strategy begins when a company wants marketing to increase revenue and customers. Consider building a marketing strategy based on –

  1. Your Company Products and Services
  2. Know Why Customers Make A Purchase
  3. Have Elite Customer Service
  4. Always Keep Marketing to Potential Customers

I’m not sure why a strategy is so neglected in anyone’s marketing program. I continually tell people to think of a strategy as a guide to beat your competition.

A few of the typical marketing strategies for many businesses are:

  • Dominance – Nobody has what we have, usually a product or service very difficult to copy.
  • Innovation – Re-make a stable, existing product or service better with new benefits. The product may cost less but that’s not always the case.
  • Horizontal Strategy – common ways to market by company size, geography or job title, among others.
  • Vertical Strategy – providing a product or service to a particular industry or customer type.
  • Diversification – increase profits by selling an already existing product to a new industry or customer type.

Now let us talk results.

A lot of business people love sports. A good example is football. Each team has a strategy to defeat the opponent. Each team creates a strategy based on the other

team’s weakness.

To help you see my point using a strategy, here’s a quote from one of the greatest minds of direct mail marketing, Lester Wunderman – Direct Marketing is a strategy. Not a tactic.” Using the mail is a tactical channel to deliver the marketing message. The creation of the copy and the offer or call-to-action is also a tactic. Learn more about the rules when using direct marketing.

What are The Right Tactics to Work with Direct Marketing?

Going back to the gridiron example, a tactic could be a position, such as linebacker. The route a linebacker takes to tackle or to make an interception, is considered as the marketing channel. The channel in your marketing could be an email, a sales presentation and even a Tweet. This blog link is also a channel.

Your strategy will dictate what tactics and channels are best for the company to reach their marketing goals.

Design and copywriting of the email, making a sales presentation or even using Twitter, helps persuade the contact to take action. The use of all the tactical tools found in your marketing toolbox, is similar to how a coach positions the players for offensive or defensive reasons, hoping to catch the other team by surprise.

Thinking About Adding a Customer-Centric Marketing Strategy?

An added bonus of building a customer-centric marketing (CCM) strategy is creativity. Not just with the copy or design, product or service creation, but with everything that you do to grow your customers using outstanding, innovative customer service. Your team becomes more creative in customer service as they satisfy customer needs. Now that’s a win for your customers and the home team, your marketing team.

Two strategies are better than one. And when you think about it, all marketing is direct. Direct to your customers and prospects. Think about it – your customers and employees are becoming more valuable with each passing day.

The next time you hear of or read a tip, use the old words to the wise standby: If it sounds too good to be true, then it is not true.

In Conclusion…

More marketing dollars are wasted on what a business feeds their market and not what the market was looking for to feast on. Marketing strategy is not busy work and too many business people think it is not worth the time to create. It takes away too many “$’s.”

Comments are cheerfully welcomed and responded to!!!

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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Five Secrets to Test Your Direct Marketing Communications…

 TestingPatternD

Before Deploying

You’ve heard the direct-marketing mail mantra a thousand times: test, test, test. But are you doing it?

I’d be willing to bet is you’re afraid to test. You’re afraid of finding a mistake. A mistake that will put you behind the eight ball. Yes, I know launch time is a killer, but are you afraid to test because of time or maybe you don’t understand testing? Here are my five secrets leading to better testing and better results.

1. If this is you…

Testing is like a hearing aid for listening to your customers. Turn it down, and all you hear is noise. Turn it up and their collective voices become crystal clear.

2. Your customers aren’t a mystery

They’re quite vocal about their likes and dislikes. In fact, every time you reach out to them, they will tell you what products they like, which offers they prefer, and which formats catch their attention. You simply have to know how to listen to them through your testing.

Those who don’t test regularly usually say they don’t have the time, the money, or a contact list that’s big enough.

But testing doesn’t have to be time-consuming or costly. It will save you both time and money in the long-run. After all, what could be more efficient than high-performing direct marketing communications?

The cost of ignorance is always greater than the cost of knowledge.  

3. What to test if you have less than 50,000 contacts

As for a small list universe, that’s a valid point. It’s one thing if you’re direct mailing a million pieces at a time and can allocate 5,000 names to 50 test cells. But what if your entire universe is 50,000 contacts or less? This is common for some business-to-business companies or those marketing to a small geographic area.

However, even a small list offers testing opportunities. For example, with 50,000 contacts, you could test two cells of 5,000 each and market your control to the remaining 40,000 contacts. This should give you valid tests and protect the performance of your program by sending your control to 80 percent of your list.

4. What to test in large vs. small number of contacts

Large-volume direct marketers can test a broad spectrum of tactics, from major changes in the offer to small tweaks in the copy.

Smaller volume marketers, or those who communicate less frequently, should focus on testing the core elements, such as the offer, lists of contacts, price point, format, or creative concept.

5. Look at testing strategically

You should also consider strategic testing, including a test to see if a direct marketing package works best for you using another channel or whether it’s better to offer free content and then follow up with more details on your product or service. This could require some rethinking of your marketing process, but two or more channel communications have proven quite successful for many businesses.

In my experience, people feel it takes too much time to test. Design a testing program that works for you. For example view your past marketing communications using analytics. Share the data with your team. You may find that another channel or two, such as mail, may create many more opens and response.

Let me know if you have a testing program in place at your company and what result surprised you the most.

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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7 Ways to Move Your Consumers to Purchase More

The purpose of copywriting is to encourage people to take action.

The more you address the specific human elements that motivate consumers, the greater your chances are to move them to action… to prod them to buy.BlueContent

So, what moves people?

  1. People can’t resist a bargain — they want to work less and make more money. They seek unbounded pleasure and satisfaction.
  2. People seek to improve themselves. They want to save time. Given a choice, they’ll take a quick fix anytime over something that must be nurtured or pursued. They seek security and safety. They want to be completely individualistic, yet feel they fit in with the crowd. People want a sense of belonging (check out Facebook). They desire more confidence and prestige.
  3. People seek power, stature, fame, the admiration and flattery of others, and insider information. They are often envious, revengeful, and proud.
  4. People need to satisfy physical hungers or thirsts. They seek better health and well-being, and longer life. People seek to avoid danger, taxes, and poverty. They want to be protected.
  5. Their goals are to be a leader, lose weight, develop a skill, make a lasting impression, speak well in public, find out what’s new, do their jobs better, and take advantage of opportunities.
  6. They long to own a business, make lasting friendships, work less, alleviate pain, protect their families, prevent theft of possessions, cut costs, worry less, and improve personal relationships.
  7. As love and affection motivate, so do guilt, grief, sorrow, and pity. Finally, people respond to patriotism, conservation, children, pets, and fun.

You don’t need to solve the entire human condition in every direct marketing piece you write and deploy. However, you want to think carefully about what you are selling, to whom, and how best to make them want to take action.

And you thought you knew your consumer needs inside and out? Keep an open mind.

Make sure to share this list with your team, especially those in close contact with consumers. After a while of “listening,” a few trends usually show up, that can lead to newer ways to target or a new group segment.

Consumer change can happen as fast as the last traffic forecast that doubled your destination time. Be prepared.

Looking for more golden ideas when using direct marketing?

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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How To Create A Marketing List Of Contacts That Gets The Gold!!!

Go4TheGoldSo, what makes a marketing list of contacts “good” or “bad?”

Here’s an interesting corollary when it comes to marketing lists. It goes like this: A good list has the potential to generate a good response with an “average” sales message. But a bad list won’t yield the response you need, regardless of how good your sales message may be. And in the world of marketing lists, you better believe that there are good names on not-so-good lists and bad names on some great lists.

Essentially, a bad marketing list is one that’s simply not targeted. The more “random” lists are, the less value it has — unless of course you have a product or service you can sell to everyone at every address in America.

Messaging to large numbers of people, hoping that some will respond, isn’t proper list selection and deployment. This is called “guessing.” And guessing who may buy — along with hoping that many will buy — probably won’t generate too many responses.

A good marketing list of contacts, on the other hand, is one that is targeted. A good list is the one that matches your offer with people who have a propensity, potential desire, or likelihood to be interested in what you are selling.

A smaller, more targeted marketing list is of greater value, response-wise, than a larger list that isn’t targeted. Keeping names on a list for “old time’s sake” doesn’t add to the value of your list.

How long will a good marketing list of contacts last?

It’s up to you. It’s how you segment the list. It’s how you target the contacts. It’s how you maintain the list of contacts.

Good marketing lists include people who have made themselves known to you as being interested in what you have to offer. When someone requests information, for example, they are saying, “Tell me more. I’m interested, and I’m willing.”

Good marketing lists include people who match a certain profile. In its simplest form, this profile can include age, income, education, and so on It can also include incredibly specific information, such as credit rating, vacation home ownership, number of vehicles in the household, best time and channel to communicate and so on.

Good marketing lists are those you can use again and again. When you look at your list and determine that there is both short-term and added safeguards for a long-term potential in the contact names, is a sure sign that your list has value. Good list maintenance is another positive sign.

When your marketing list of contacts performs admirably three or four times in a row, you know you’re on the right track. After each use gather the analytics and interpret what the data means for longevity and what maintenance is needed on the marketing contacts.

Good marketing contact lists are like 100-ounce bars of gold: solid, valuable, and precious!Key2Success

Finally, good lists are bargains! They don’t really cost you more. In fact, good marketing lists that target and narrow your universe help to lower your acquisition and processing costs. Become the master at updating targeted contact lists by always obtaining fresh data using analytical skills.

How often do you update your marketing lists? Are you using analytics? If so, how are you interpreting the data?

Looking for more golden ideas?

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Do you want more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
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The Seven Golden Rules Using Direct Marketing, Direct Mail, and Direct Response Tactics…

TheGoldenRulesWebOr Better Known As “The Big List If You Need a Big Response!” 

“Market unto others as you would have them market unto you.”

That’s a little broad. So let’s take a look at it piece by piece. Here are seven elements that combine to make up the one big “Golden Rule.”

Rule #1: Market only what is relevant to people who care about what you are marketing!

HavingFunIn other words, don’t send a solicitation for membership to the new golf course unless you know you’re mailing to golfers.

While golfers would enjoy receiving such a solicitation and might jump at the chance to play or join, not only would non-golfers most likely not be interested in receiving it, they most likely wouldn’t be taking positive action –– such as spending money!

We know that targeted direct marketing is extremely effective. But a misdirected inappropriate solicitation is wasteful and may hurt your brand.

Rule #2: Eliminate the risk of buying.

Guarantee of SatisfactionYou know that when you receive a solicitation for any offer, you appreciate knowing that you can buy with complete confidence. If you’re not completely happy with your purchase –– or any aspect of the purchase –– you have recourse.

That recourse could be to receive all of your money back if you’re not completely satisfied. It could be to receive an extended service contract at no additional charge.

Just as you like to know that you can buy confidently your prospects and customers want to know the same thing. So we say,

“Bring risk reversal into your direct marketing mail and response solicitations. Make it prominent throughout your offer and your copy. Talk about it. Brag about it.”

Rule #3: Offer all appropriate response options.

Most people like to know they can go online any time, day or night, and place an order.

What’s your favorite way to take the next step and respond? If you prefer to be one of those two-in-the-morning buyers, so be it as well.

The point is that just as you prefer to have it your way, so do your prospects and customers. So give them options.

Through testing, you’ll determine the most preferred response options of your market. And then you’ll be doing unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Rule #4: Be honest. Maintain high integrity.

FortuneTellerYou know how you feel when you think you’re being scammed or taken advantage of.

You know how you feel when a marketing message borders on “too good to be true.”

We’ve all seen solicitations that show an amazing cleaning product, for example –– one that we’ve tried on a lesser stain. We know it doesn’t work.

Credibility goes down the drain right along with the cleaning product.

Rule #5: Use personalization carefully and wisely.

UR-KiddingYes, this is 2015. Personalization is so easy to use these days that many direct marketing mail and response campaigns use a tremendous amount of it. Research shows that personalization helps increase response.

However, a name spelled wrong is sometimes all it takes for an otherwise on-target campaign to wind up blowing in the wind!

When someone sends you a solicitation with your name spelled incorrectly or containing information that is too personal or incorrect, you know the feeling.

That feeling is magnified even more when that solicitation comes from someone who should know better –– such as a company that you’ve purchased from in the past.

Rule #6: Don’t Assume; Educate.

LightBulbv1-copy.jpgIt’s dangerous to assume that your customers and prospects know what you think they know.

In reality your readers may know more than you about what you’re selling; they may know less. You just never know for sure.

It always helps to educate customers and prospects in such a way that neither talks down to them nor insults them.

A few carefully chosen paragraphs summarizing features and benefits, a link to a digital source such as a landing page, with facts and figures, and so on can provide a quick overview of your product or service.

It’s what you would want someone to do for you –– particularly if you were new to a certain technology, product, or service solution.

Rule #7: Offend no one.

AlltheTinyPeopleIt’s hard to know what might offend a customer or prospect.

While it seems impossible to “offend no one,” we need to be alert to that each and every person on your list is different. They come to the moment in time when they read your offer having a variety of life experiences.

The solution is to think carefully about the words and images you use. Get a consensus about your words and images from a cross section of people.

Wrapping Up.

When you follow the golden rules of direct marketing, mail and response life gets better. You attract loyal customers who keep buying and who refer you to their friends and colleagues.

This provides you with the greatest impact and the most leverage –– guaranteed.

What would you add to our list of the Golden Rules?

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Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the box found in the right margin, top or bottom.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com.
Marketingeval_logoV3MarketingDoc Copyright15



How to write the perfect sales letter…

and Why!Cartoon-Guy-reading.jpg

Google’s doing it. Healthcare and Insurance companies love it. Consultants are starting to recommend direct mail as a channel not to overlook. So why should you?

In our last post, “How to Write Copy That Sells,” I discussed a few secrets of the trade to grab your readers attention. Today, I’ll present a closer look at the advantages of sending a sales letter using postal mail.

Even with all the modern technology and new channels of communication available today, a good sales letter is still one of the most effective means of selling products and generating high quality leads. At the least, with the right name and address, the post office still delivers.

A letter is personal, delivering a one-to-one message from you to your potential customer. It’s also a format that’s easy to read and which generates high readership from recipients.

How do you write a sales letter?

Let’s say you’re selling house painting services and you want people to request a free estimate.

Begin your letter with a headline or Johnson Box” (Wiki) as known by many in the direct mail industry that presents your offer or promises a benefit. Your headline could read, “Finally! An affordable house painter who really cares about the smallest details! Ask for our FREE estimate, which contains testimonials from nearby residents, and a get $20.00 gift card from a local pizza parlor when we present our proposal.”

Your salutation should be simple and warm. All you need is “Dear Mike” or, if you’re using Every Door Direct Mail (USPS.COM), “Hello Neighbor!”

Then, in your first sentence, you must really get the readers attention. Write something short and punchy, such as “Hate a sloppy paint job? So do we!”

Going on with our example, you should then present the problem, which are painters who rush and don’t do a neat job. After the problem, present the solution, which is your professional painting service.

JumpAlways have an offer in your sales letter.

Then you should present your offer, which in this case is a free estimate and proposal. But it could also be a discount on the first job, or even a free consultation on a specific project.

Next, provide a few features and benefits of your service. Make sure that these relate to what your prospects care about, which in this case would be attention to detail, superior skill, experience, and so on.

Now it’s time for the “Call-to-Action.

Then comes the most important part of the sales letter; the “call to action.” If you want people to contact you, give your phone number and/or email address. Provide a Web address so the reader can see first-hand recent photos of completed jobs and a few testimonials from recent customers.

Social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram are two great channels to support your direct mail letter. Pictures do help telling a story.

Now state your guarantee to ease doubts and present a deadline or expiration date for your proposed estimate and gift card offer. A deadline is important because many people won’t take action unless there’s a little pressure.

Wrap-it-Up.

Then, it’s time for your wrap-up. The wrap-up is a quick restatement of the promise you made and a reminder of the offer and call to action. This may appear repetitive, and it is. But a little repetition is a good thing in a sales letter.

Finally comes your signature, and you’re done, right? Not quite. It’s always good to add a P.S. This acts like a headline at the end of the letter. It can be used to restate the offer, emphasize the deadline, or even give people an alternate means of response.

Every business is different, so every sales letter will be different. But if you follow the step-by-step formula outlined here, you’ll improve your odds of success.

SearchingW_binosSign up today for our monthly email newsletter.

Looking for more information on using direct marketing solution for today’s digital and online marketers? Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter in the Johnson Box found in the right margin.

There is still time to grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

Who reads Direct Mail Marketing success? Providers of direct mail marketing processing, companies looking for direct mail marketing content, and individuals looking to improve they direct and digital marketing techniques. Plus you, if you’re a small business who wants to see better marketing results. Visit DMCM.net for more information on direct marketing mail.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com. Marketingeval_logoV3MarketingDoc Copyright15

 



How To Write Copy That Drive Sales

DrivingSalesJust make sure you know who you are writing to.

Writers in direct response or marketing, tend to be too vague, obtuse, and remote in communicating. To create copy that sells in your direct copywriting, be specific to do some serious selling.

For example, when you write, “It saves you money,” you are making an important point, but be precise. Come right out and tell the readers exactly how much you are saving them. “You save two bucks. You save $200. You save $2,000.”

When you claim, “It saves you time,” do not be vague. Let the readers know exactly how much time you are saving them. “You save an hour per day. You save a day a week. You save four days per month.”

When describing specific features and benefits, “New and Improved!” is too vague. Use dramatic descriptions that reveal in precise and appropriate detail exactly what makes your product new and improved.

If your product is extremely technical, watch out for too much of a good thing. “Our newest computer chip, generates 195 mega cycles of different data at a base of minus 150 degrees below zero when accelerated to a mega speed of 920 cyclic tic-tumbles per second.”

Too much precision is especially dangerous when you address two or more audiences with the same direct response or direct marketing mail piece. To wit, a single direct marketing mail piece needs to speak to the audience – manager and the engineers.

If you get too technical, the engineer may know what you are writing about, but the manager, who may control the budget, may not.

Summary

Know your audience. Technically uneducated and unsophisticated people buy some pretty sophisticated things. Some may let their ego get in the way when working with others (engineers) in the company. It’s important to share, just make sure your copy is shareable.

How do you make sure your copy is written for the targeted person?

Grab a FREE edition of Direct Mail Success.DMS1993a

Since 1993, Direct Mail Success has provided readers the ins and outs of direct marketing mail to get a better response in their marketing campaigns. Download a recent issue and see for yourself. The issue is free and any ideas are yours to keep.

In this issue you’ll find, “7 awesome methods of direct marketing mail, Big Data, Small Data and a CRM, Frequently Answered Questions and more!”

Who reads Direct Mail Marketing success? Providers of direct mail marketing processing, companies looking for direct mail marketing content, and individuals looking to improve they direct and digital marketing techniques.

Plus you, if you’re a small business who wants to see better marketing results. Visit DMCM.net for more information on direct marketing mail.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask in the comment section or send an email to marketingdoc@live.com. Marketingeval_logoV3MarketingDoc Copyright15




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