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FOUR of Twelve Re’Market’Able Ideas to Increase YOUR Mar’Ket’Ing Response Now…

Or Quickly Pull the Plug to Save Your Sanity!

Number-4

Number Four.

If this is your present marketing model, retire it immediately before you waste any more money.

Today many companies are still using a reactive form of marketing. If you think your sales revenue is disgusting here’s the culprit.

Companies using reactive marketing have known products and are introducing a new one or re- launching another. Reactive marketing is found on traditional channels, such as television, radio and newspaper or magazine display ads.

Did you ever wonder why a commercial sounds louder? That’s because it is louder. Reactive marketing relies on shouting and a high frequency of placements to make sure the ads cause people to react.

These same companies know little about the people on the other end, just some simple demographic or primitive psychographic information. They probably don’t know what these people want and don’t know a damn thing about their needs. They may not even know if the responding party is a prospect or customer. You guessed it – they collect little or no data.

Reactive marketing uses a lot of trial and error and is not a type of digital marketing. It is incomplete. It’s basically a one way conversation. There is no engagement. It leads a person to a form of trial and error, which is a big waste of your marketing dollars.

Read More Next Week:

When we’ll present the “killer table setting aps” of Direct Marketing which will make you Digital Marketing more powerful.

Monday: 5.When moving to integrate direct marketing into digital, plan to use more and better data management.

Tuesday: 6. Never neglect a good grabber, a call-to-action, which always gets the job done.

Wednesday: 7. It’s legal to taunt, tempt and tease in direct and now in digital marketing. In fact, your customers expect it!

Friday: 8. Understand analytics and stats at a lesser level; add more latter when you have a better understanding of your customers.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Three of Twelve Re’Market’Able Ideas to Increase YOUR Mar’Ket’Ing Response Now…

Or Quickly Pull the Plug to Save Your Sanity!

NumberThree

Number Three.

Be serious in your direct marketing copy.

Some people think they can pull the reader into the copy with some humor. Unless you’re selling make-up to clowns, humor is not a good idea. Don’t waste the reader’s time with copy that may not be funny to the reader. It’s a quick turn off and poof goes another opportunity to sell.

When you take your copy seriously your reader is more likely to take you seriously. The tone of the message reflects not only on the product itself, but with you as the seller.

Serious, sincere, straightforward copy speaks with experience and authority. It commands respect, attracts and holds attention, and reinforces the key selling points of your offer. It helps convince your reader that your product is a worthwhile, well-documented offer – one to act on confidently.

The longer the copy, the more serious you want to be. In long copy, you ask your reader to stay with you. As a plus, straight serious copy almost never offends anyone.

Tomorrow: Number Four. If this is your present marketing model, retire it immediately before you waste any more money.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Two of Twelve Re’Market’Able Ideas to Increase YOUR Mar’Ket’Ing Response Now…

Or Quickly Pull the Plug to Save Your Sanity! Part Two.

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Number Two.

Speaking about relevance…

First, you must agree that communication occurs on the receiver’s side. To wit, communication does not take place on the sending side, writing or speaking. Communication occurs almost exclusively on the reading and listening side.

A writer can write or speak all she wants in the clearest language she knows. But no matter how clear it is to her, she did not complete the communication process if it sounds like a foreign language to the reader. She is not communicating. Her message is not being acknowledged.

Sometimes the people who read your marketing copy know more than you do about what you are selling. Other people who read the copy may have only an elementary understanding of the product. As the writer, you may never know the level of the reader’s expertise. Incorporate basic summaries and overviews in your writing that anyone can understand. These are good traits to help get your message through the clutter.

As a writer your goal is always clarity. Avoid long sentences, big words unless your readers expect them, and simplistic jargon. It is always wise to avoid an insult.

Direct marketing techniques have a lot to offer, especially in copywriting. A great headline will make sure the rest of your copy is read!

Tomorrow: Number Three. Be serious in your direct marketing copy.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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One of Twelve Re’Market’Able Ideas to Increase YOUR Mar’Ket’ing Response Now…

Or Quickly Pull the Plug to Save Your Sanity!

DirectMarketing

Obviously there are more than 12 Ideas to increase your marketing response. As you read each posted idea, you will think of other ideas for your business. When you begin to track and analyze your new captured data, new ideas will spew from your mind faster that a child may open a holiday present.

Here’s the one-a-day posting schedule for the rest of the year.

Tuesday through Friday of this week –

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday in the next two weeks, terminating on January 2 –

I know if you make a commitment to address your company’s marketing short comings, you will see results. Just like anything else in life instant gratification always happens to the next person. It takes time and the biggest fear when embracing new ideas is change. Embrace change and keep listening to your customers. Change happens a whole lot easier that way.

If you do have a question or comment for us, please ask or tell away, either through the comment section here or any other social media channel. We’re always willing to share and help other business owners. If we don’t have an answer, we’ll find one.

Number One.

Stop Wasting Your Marketing and Advertising Time and Money!

Don’t kid yourself. If all the money you put into marketing returned what was spent and much, much more, you would have not wasted any time getting this far in the post.

Google John Wanamaker. He said 50% of my advertising dollars are wasted. I’m just not sure what half. When did he say this?

Rex Briggs and Greg Stuart. Their research determined that 37% of advertising was money wasted. According to a Google Search this was determined in 2006. What did they recently disclose about advertising and how many dollars were wasted? Google the answer now!

Recently Google stated that over 56% of advertisements purchased, are never _______??? Use Bing to get the answer.

The time is right to quit wasting money and time. Build a team of market’eers. Yes you read right. Your team can start with one market’eer or three market’eers or whatever number your budget can support.

You’ll need someone who loves data, writing copy, an eye for design, customer service and inside or outside sales. You’ll know when you find one – they talk the talk. You’ll find other ways to determine a keeper as you read on for the 11 posts that follow.

Tomorrow: Number Two. Speaking about relevance…

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Tis the Season to Be Giving…

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But Not A Leaky Pen With Your Company Name!!!

In a recent discussion with a few of my marketing friends, the topic of Promotional Products came up for us to banter around. A promotional product should leave a subtle reminder from the giver, to think of them when the next project comes to the top of the list, for a quote.

There are thousands of catalogs available touting bags to backpacks to cups to t-shirts to caps to pens, etc. So what do you choose?

How about a nice pen, with the company and/or product name?LeakyPen

Early on in my advertising days, one of my employees, a very young creative copywriter always willing to help, was getting opinions of what he wrote for a client, from some of the other employees. He was wearing a nicely pressed white shirt with a dark blue circle at the bottom of his shirt pocket. Since I was the first person to inform him of this ink blot on his shirt pocket, the supplier who gave him the leaky pen was immediately cussed out.

Now that I have a foot in the door, what do you want to buy?

On the other hand, it’s important to show creativity when selecting a company give-away. My wife owned a staffing company. She would visit 2nd hand stores and buy slightly used baby shoes.

Cards were printed with a headline, “Now that I have a foot in the door…,” tied to a shoelace, signed by the sales person, and left for the human resources manager in charge of hiring. The sales person followed up with a phone call a day or so later to see if they were interested in using their staffing services. Even when busy, a call back usually occurred after mentioning the leave behind baby shoe.Baby-Shoe

Honored Guest of the Week on a Marquee Can Work Well.

I was in the middle of a two week selling spree out in the western USA and decided to spend the weekend at a Holiday Inn in Colorado Springs. When I was entering the hotel driveway, the marquee said, “Welcome, Honored Guess of the Week, Mike Deuerling.”

I was stunned as I entered the lobby and went to the check-in desk. I gave the person my name and was showered with more free gifts, including a picture of the marquee noting my honor. The free dinner and drink was a nice addition as well.

Summary and it’s your turn to comment.

Promotional products are nice, but when you need to make an impact, think out of the box. A little creativity can go a long way when building customer relationships. You don’t need the kind of relationships a leaky pen can bring.

A few months ago I wrote a post about branding and the restaurant owner as a key element of success for the restaurant. Read it for some additional ideas.

Let me hear your story about how you used something special for added remembrance.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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The surest way to get more customers…

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And build for the future of any small business.

Financial planners, banks, insurance companies and investing firms deal largely with other people’s money.

When a firm in this industry plans a new marketing program, what is the one word that needs to be equated with their company? Yes, TRUST is the correct word.Brands

People who need to BRAND their company must start building relationships with customers from the time they start in this industry. The next time you meet someone in the financial arena, online or in person, what type of impression did they leave with you?

If it was a good impression, one of safety and trust, you may look forward to getting more information to confirm your assumption. If you did not have a good first impression, you would quickly move on to bye-bye. Don’t feel bad. Most people know it when they get the good-bye look.

How can this impact my business?

Any business can take away a few thoughts from this financial industry scenario. Marketing today can be like swimming in shark infested waters. Don’t take any chances with your marketing. If you feel your marketing can be better, then most certainly it can be better.

The best marketing OPTION to get you out of the shark infested water…

I recommend using direct mail and digital mail as the foundation for any new marketing campaign. Direct mail is a trusted channel to use to maintain contact with prospects and customers. Plus, SharkInfestedeveryone has a mailbox.

In the direct mail copy share what you are doing in the community, such as sports sponsorships or providing funds to a charitable organization. This shows you care and are compassionate.

Explain how others are using the product and how easy the product is to buy. A customer testimonial is a great idea. Add a guarantee or a money-back offer to assure them you are working with them and for them.

There is a strategy available to keep you going!

EnergizerCroppedA customer-centric marketing strategy is a good choice for a company to align themselves closer to their customer’s needs, wants, and emotions. As you learn more about your customers, your communications with them become more relevant.

Digital mail is a unique channel to increase the frequency of messages by simply determining the customer IP address. Whenever anyone in the household goes on line a banner ad appears for branding purposes, with a message for each customer and has a similar design that will remind them of the direct mail.

I have worked in sales, advertising and marketing for a very long time. What I do know for sure; success is based on knowing more about your customers and another chance to strengthen the relationship. Taking the time to listen to, talk to and understand your customer, can greatly increase your marketing results, customer acquisition and customer retention.

My Call-to-Action…

Visit my website for more info on a customer-centric marketing strategy. To learn more about direct mail and an article on building trust is now available so read it now! Click here to learn more now about digital mail, especially about increasing your response rate with direct mail.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Energizer Bunny photo credit:
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What I learned in healthcare marketing and…

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why it’s a poor strategy for any business to imitate.

I first started working with dental healthcare practices in the mid-eighties. The main reason – too many competing healthcare practices. What do you do if you need to sell more?  Advertise!

Most healthcare practices, who decided to stick their big toe in the wave of advertising, turned to traditional advertising campaigns. There was no social media, email or Al Gore’s invention, the internet.

68The first thing the healthcare managers learned form advertising sales people is they needed to be first, always one step ahead of the competition. Some practices placed larger ads or helped ad reps create new classifications. Do you remember the yellow pages directory?

The next action was anticipated. Numerous display ads began to appear in the local newspapers. It was amazing how many teeth variations were designed into logos hoping these unique designs gained some recognition and even patients.

Even today, traditional advertising is not a money maker (except for the advertising sales people:).

Traditional advertising is truly not a place for a business hoping that this type of marketing works. Traditional advertising relies on a reactive form of marketing. You know, the “I must absolutely have that,” crowd.

Reactive marketing is seen on TV, found in newspapers, and what we hear on the radio. “See or hear my ad and please react with many purchases,” is what healthcare managers wanted from their advertising.  The cost of ad placements and the 15Calendarproduction of the ad are extraordinarily expensive. They can reach a lot of people, but for many reasons, not your customers.

Turn the calendar ahead to 2015.

What I described above exists today to some degree. What I learned in the early 90’s was that the average health care practice wanted marketing but all they knew was advertising. They wanted more patients or past patients to return to their practice, but they did not know how to directly reach them. Any other type of small business would agree with that assumption as well.

Last week I had a discussion with a dermatologist. She was probably in her late thirties or early forties. She left a very larger practice (seven locations) to join a smaller practice with one other doctor.

She left the larger practice because the more experienced doctors with ownership in the practice, were having a tough time with the latest health care regulations. The practice she left did not understand what their patients wanted, did not care about their needs, but only cared when they would pay for their services. Obviously, not a customer-centric marketing strategy in action.

This is beginning to sound similar to the earlier times of health care marketing.

The marketing was left to an office manager. If there was any marketing placed by the manager, it was scattered and poorly done. After all, there were other important patient issues to address.

The obvious result? The practice had a poor image with patients. Payments were needed up front if the patient did not have a good insurance carrier. Miss a payment, get a threatening letter.

Marketing is a process of many business functions.

GrowthThe health care practice of today must be patient centric. A practice needs a brand image that is in line with patient expectations. Any communication with patients must reflect on the wellness of the patient, medical knowledge, and leadership in medical procedures supporting the image.

The marketing strategy must be as professional as the doctors are with their patients. Marketing is too important for a practice or an office manager to handle in their spare time, if any is left. This can be said for any type of small business that wants good and happy customers in 2015. As in a healthcare practice this type of change is good for the practice and the patients (customers).

Marketing is only successful when the marketing process is followed.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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How to become a marketing mixologist…

Mixologistand reach your best response from each marketing campaign.

Every time I see or hear the word mixologist, the picture that enters my brain is a bartender trying to come up with the next best drink. Or is it the scientist working with numerous beakers, each one rapidly bubbling with vapor escaping from their tops! A mixologist could even be an artist mixing the paint on a palette trying to come up with the right color.

If you are a marketer, that same term can apply as well. For example, your customer database is full of unique personalities and characteristics just like one of your favorite drinks. So how do you whip up a list of your customers which will give you a higher response?

Maybe the copywriting needs an influx of higher octane words that sell. Does the design need to pull in more eyeballs, grab the reader’s attention and make them dive right into the copy for more?

The better your information, the less likelihood of marketing failure.

If you are like most marketing professionals, it takes an idea or even a word to arrive at a potential solution for better response. Once your brain gives you the answer you quickly remind yourself “I know that!” I believe it’s called an “Aha” moment or if you’re from Northern California, it’s known as, “Eureka, I’ve got it!”

Marketing is one of those occupations causing a normal person like you or me to suffer from cramping or even freezing of the cranium. A frozen cranium can be disastrous and worse yet, make one look for a new occupation. Something else may even freeze over, impacting more people, especially in sales.

I’ve got the cure.

There is a cure for this malady and I am willing to share it with you. A great marketer must digest a massive flow of information.

Then, with a moment’s notice the marketer must activate a solution from this massive amount of information stored in the darkest regions within the cranium.

Fortunately for many marketers there is a quick trigger nerve which can be activated almost immediately from the sensory portion of the brain. This trigger may be released with yoga, caffeine, dark chocolate or any other craving. Experiment – everyone is different

Once activated, the marketer starts to get answers. Some scientists believe this trigger to be a combination of the hand and lips sensory portions.

I found that all people in the profession of marketing have a special area in their cranium for solutions to many marketing questions.

It’s there in all of us marketers, but it takes time to find it and the correct way to use it. The more experience a marketer gets, usually determines the proper flow of information.

In closing…

The main reason there is so much information to scour and react to at a moment’s notice, is our interaction with other humans. On any given day, a marketing tactic or strategy that always worked, will fail. Smart marketers must try to determine why and make changes accordingly.

Just like the mixologist trying a new recipe, some of your associates may like it and others won’t. It’s up to you by asking why and test your answers before changing the recipe.

If you don’t particularly like change, you are in the wrong profession.

For additional information, please visit a recent post, “Are your Customers Buying Enough?” Or do a search right here on this blog to access other articles about understanding customers and using a Customer-Centric Marketing Strategy.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Learn Seven Direct Marketing Copywriting Tips from Non-Profit Industry Writers …

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and how to use it to win over more customers.

You can always learn smart marketing from the non-profit industry. Let me set the table for you but if you need a cup of coffee that’s your responsibility. Here’re a few simple direct marketing tips to get your mind in gear.

For example, an automobile manufacturer does not just sell cars. They are selling economical transportation to get you to and from work every day. What else are they selling?

Or the boat manufacturer does not just sell boats to get you across the lake. They are selling you the experience of fishing or waterskiing and the enjoyment of your favorite hobby. What would you add to this list?

When using direct marketing to reach an enthusiast, focus on the payoff or reward more than on the product or service. In addition you need to include some of the technical specifications or terminology, but keep the copy at a minimum.

My Seven Tips from great copy artists in non-profit companies. 

How do professional nonprofit fundraisers raise millions of dollars for their nonprofits every year? What are their secrets to fundraising? The answer is trust and establishing confidence in the direct communication copy. As promised, here are the 7 tips.

1.  As potential donors are reading the copy, it’s important to clarify “the why” you’re asking for a donation and then move onto selling the successes of the non-profit organization. They do not want a donor to give them money, but what they do want is to get them to support and invest in their organization. People want to be associated with a cause they believe in. 

2.  A Non-Profit copywriter puts the facts in small type, and emphasizes the benefits, payoff, and rewards. They bring the reader onto center stage in the copy using big, bold letters. Maybe they send them to a website landing page with a similar look and continue the reward and payoff type copy, even accentuating it with actual photography or a video.

 If you believe in a cause, you’ll receive frequent communications.

3.  There’s no faster way to lose an enthusiast or a donor than to stop at one communication. A good rule of thumb is to follow with another direct mail piece that has continuity with the first communication. The piece should contain crafted stories including pictures of a donor’s monetary gift in action. Donors like seeing information in writing and on paper.

4.  It’s always a good idea to reference the first mailing to build on the enthusiasm and then on the donor’s emotions. That’s another reason why frequency is so important.

5.  A single piece of direct mail can easily evolve into many communications and using other channels of communication preferred by the readers. Learning more about their donors is a vital strategy in the non-profit industry and similar to a customer-centric marketing strategy.

6.  Do not worry about redundancy. Remember people are bombarded with thousands of message per day. That’s another good reason to keep continuity going from the first moment into the campaign to whenever the campaign ends.

7.  The image you project about your product or service or your charity and the value it brings to your customers or donors, can be more important than the product or the service. To a charity donor, it’s considered as an investment into the charitable organization.

 Can you see the value of focusing more on your customers?

Here’s a takeaway for your profit business: learning a buying reason of a group of your customers on how they use your product, can lead your company to better marketing results using more relevant copy. Good results will lead to more customers.

You get the picture, so what are you waiting for?

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Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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Are your customers buying enough?

Here are a few key ingredients that will appeal to many customers’ taste buds.BuyingBinge

People spend a lot of money each and every day on products and services. Would it be nice if they spent more of their hard earned cash at your company? Since you probably agree with the previous sentence, or unless you are selling the latest I-Phone, there are a gazillion reasons why not.

Since I’m not sure what number a gazillion is, let’s start with a simple number – one. Unfortunately that “one” represents all of your customers. Since every one of your customers is different, maybe your marketing messages are not up to the challenge to convert a browser to a customer.

Imagine being in a busy restaurant with every chair and table full and even a line of people waiting outside the front door to get in. Many of these people may know or not know what they are going to order to squelch their hunger. People are given a menu by a wait person to help with their decision making process.

As you look around the room, some people are drinking coffee, soda, milk or if it’s breakfast, maybe an orange juice. Then again, there are many items on the menu to meet the incredible needs of customers.

Why does your company need a customer menu?

There are many reasons why a customer chooses your product or service on any given day. Conversely, there are many reasons why customers have not selected your products and services.

People, who are successful with their marketing, have spent a lot of time learning as much as possible about their customers and their buying habits. These astute marketers segment their customers into different groups based on their tendencies to buy.

For example, the customer who came into the restaurant and did not need a menu knew what he or she wanted. Every company has customers who know what they want, but unfortunately this is a minority.

It’s a great opportunity to find people who know what they want, but what about people who are not sure? There are many reasons why people buy or don’t buy on any given day.

The key ingredient in your customers menu of buying decisions is…

A person familiar with direct marketing understands that people don’t buy things; they buy opportunities! Buying decisions are not made through reasoning and logic, but through the lens of wants, needs, interests, joys, fears, hopes, expectations, and regrets.

Customers buy opportunities — special deals, promotions, deferred billing, get-acquainted offers, long-term financing, and easy payment terms.

Beyond the basics of water, food, shelter, clothing, and warmth, virtually everything people buy is based on fulfilling an emotional desire. Once you touch people emotionally, reasoning and logic are used merely to confirm a buying decision.

If your marketing is going to appeal to your customers, you will need a Chef.

MktgIsEverythingV2Assemble a marketing team of people that are in customer service, order takers, shipping, inside and outside sales people, and just about anyone else who responds to customers in some way.

Their main goal is to collect customer information during every encounter with a customer about their most recent purchase. Every employee in the team must share their collected information with other team members. If you need further ideas read my sample charts of easy segmentation, one and two.

Select a team leader, one who can use this information to build customer profiles. Each profile is like an ingredient within the menu. It’s the common characteristics which relate to all customers in a specific segment. Your team leader is the chef or the marketing maître’d of the company.

Learning more about your customers will give you the various menus you need to build revenue. Your marketing becomes more relevant to customer needs and that reinforces their buying decision. It’s one of those “WOW” factors all good marketers love to hear about. That’s one of the reasons you probably started, or joined your present company.

Thanks for reading and please share with others – except your competition! It is truly appreciated.

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