5 Proven Offline Marketing Methods For Newbies

Jun 16 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

We’re currently in the Information Age – an era where information is shared among people almost at the speed of light. This, of course, was made possibly through the Internet. As more and more people are getting online, online marketing has reached a level in a way that marketers from decades ago can only ever dream of. With that in mind, many marketers have used the Internet as a powerful medium to market their products and services that they completely shelved the notion of using the ever reliable method of offline marketing. This is a grave mistake any marketer shouldn’t commit, since offline marketing is as essential as it was decades ago. It is also made more significant if used hand in hand with online marketing. To bolster your marketing efforts, here are important offline marketing methods to help you out.

1. Direct mailing is a method that is no less effective as it was before even with the current popularity of emails. Direct mail comes in the form of flyers, brochures, letters and postcards. You can also create your own hard copies on your own printer to reduce costs. Mailing postcards are also cheaper than mailing letters and fliers, so make sure that make use of this method to maximize your capital.

One avenue where you can focus your direct mails is the brick and mortar businesses. This is obvious for the fact that an actual physical establishment can have offline marketing materials that employees can read at their own leisure. So don’t forget to include these establishments in your recipients list when you distribute your direct mails.

2. Conducting seminars, workshops and symposiums can go a long way into making your business more visible, and at the same time, showcase your expertise on matters concerning your niche. If you are able to build a reputation in the industry you’re part of, word will spread, and this in turn will help make your product a household name.

3. You can also advertise in newspapers and magazines. This type of offline marketing campaign can cost you some money, so you’ll have to tread carefully and make use of your budget wisely. The key here is to choose the right publications that will advertise your product. To do this, you have to pick the ones that distribute their papers at a high volume. If local, pick those whose area of distribution has a large population. Another important thing: since the popularity of the Internet, magazine and newspaper readership has dwindled, and I would recommend having the ads printed only on Sundays to improve visibility.

4. Charity events are a great opportunity to showcase your product. As one of the sponsors, your brand’s logo can be displayed on all their advertising materials. One rule of thumb is that your website’s URL should be displayed as well. Do this, and the amount of exposure your product will get will be considerable.

5. Finally, you can use yourself as your own product’s advertisement, much like what a mascot does for a company. No, you don’t have to wear silly costumes. Wearing a T-shirt with your site’s URL printed on it, as well as a car sticker with the same effect, should suffice. When you are your own advertisement, you can execute your offline marketing campaign on a more personal level.

Comments are off for this post

Direct Response Article Marketing

Jun 16 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

I was never one of the smart kids in school because I didn’t ask questions. Looking back, that’s really what differentiated the true honors students, form the kids who just got good grades. The kids who asked questions were able to find understanding.

Direct response advertising works under the principle that the consumer has questions. If their questions aren’t addressed then they won’t buy the product. There are different ways to tackle this problem. An inefficient way is to try to address all the questions in a thirty second commercial, or a Web site sidebar. That is impossible.

A wiser way to address this problem is to admit you can’t answer every consumer’s question without hearing the question. With direct response advertising the company is able to instantly hear the customer’s questions and answer them.

Article marketing is a great way to get into the consumers head. You start by intriguing them and work from there. When they get to the end of your article one of three things is going to happen. One option is that they’ll want to buy the product. Another option is that they’ll be completely uninterested. A third and very likely option is that they will have questions. So, if the article has contact information attached the reader can voice their question. The easier it is to contact you the more likely they will.

If you have a phone number they might call. If you have an email address they might send an email. If you send an instant message to them when they get to the bottom of the article, then they probably will ask the question.

Internet direct response article marketing is an amazing tool. It gives the seller the opportunity to speak with the consumer at the perfect time. The perfect time is when they are first deciding whether or not they want the product. The instant message is bot generated at first, but if the consumer replies to the bot they can be instantly patched through with a salesperson. Then the salesperson can address the consumer’s questions head-on.

In this scenario confusion is an asset rather than a liability. The salesperson can help the consumer realize that the product is right for them. There is a right answer to any of their questions. If they want to ask a question about the product, that means they’re interested in it. All the salesperson has to do is help them figure out why they are interested in it.

The article doesn’t need to be confusing to issue this result. Instead, it should attempt the get the reader to think about the product. It should inspire them to ask questions about the product not because they’re confused about it, but because they want to know more about it.

Back in school the smart kids searched for understanding. Now the smart people help others find understanding. Direct response article marketing presents the information to the consumer, and then we work with them to make sure they understand it the right way.

Comments are off for this post

Direct Mail Campaigns And The Importance Of A Strong Sales Letter

Jun 16 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

To make your direct mail offer work, you have to have a good sales letter. A strong sales letter is the cornerstone of a rock solid plan and you should invest time to develop a good one for the product that you are selling. Even though there are 2 other factors that play a role in your direct mail success, it’s the actual words on the paper that will get you the sales you need to stay in business.

The other 2 factors that I’m talking about is your mailing list and the actual offer itself. It’s pivotal that these 2 factors are on target so that you don’t waste money sending your message to a group that won’t hear you. This is called “marketing on deaf ears” – if your list is bad, how do you expect to make any money?

Similarly, if your list is good, but your sales letter can’t convey your prospect to buy, then what is the purpose of it? One of the best things that you can do for yourself is to gain an understanding of who it is that you’re selling to. You want to know their wants, needs, and problems so that you can address them in your sales letter.

A good strategy for getting your readers interested in your sales letter is to inform them more about the problem that they are having. When you educate your reader, you remind of their problem and allow them to get roused up for your message. This is a great way to turn your prospects on to your letter and to get them interested into what you have to say.

When educating your readers, you will want to mention to them the options that they have available to solve their problem. All winning direct mail sales letters does this, and you should position your product as the best solution for the problem. You can do this in a variety of ways. You can offer comparisons, you can give them testimonials of previous customers, you can show them the value in terms of cost, and a whole lot more.

You will stand out in your prospect mind because very few business owners go out of their way to help their prospects. You will be perceived as someone who is helpful and who is really looking out for their best interest. This educating of your reader is a great way to separate yourself from your other competitors, and to gain a receptive ear from your prospects.

Another thing that your direct mail sales letter has to do is to eliminate all barriers that stand in between you and your prospect. Your prospects will have some doubt in their mind especially if this is the first time that you’ve sent your letter out to them. You have to do whatever it takes to remove this doubt, and one of the best ways to do it is with customer testimonials.

With testimonials, you allow your customers to do the selling for you. Testimonials show that you stand behind your word 100% and that you deliver on what you promise. This is a good way to scare competitors off also and to gain a receptive ear with your prospect.

Another thing that you can do to remove doubt is to offer a guarantee. Letting your prospects know that they take no risk is a huge move in removing all doubt from their mind. All prospects want to know that if they wanted to, they can get their money back from you. So give them what they want and they will give you what you want – sales.

All of these tips for making your direct mail sales letter a success is pivotal to your business operations.

Comments are off for this post

Why Internet Marketing Works – Learn the Secret to Its Success

Jun 05 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

You might ask yourself these questions: “Why does internet networking work?” “Why is online marketing as popular as food delivery?” and “What makes internet marketing attractive?”

Over the years internet marketing has truly become a popular choice for buying and ordering products. Internet marketing refers to all products that are advertised and are being sold on the internet. This new way of selling products became so popular that many entrepreneurs now sell their products online, and why not? Internet shopping is convenient, hassle-free, and most of all, it can be done at the comfort of your home.

The internet world holds millions of potential customers, and because you do not really have to spend much in opening an online store, even businesses that are primarily operating offline in the past are now putting up their own online stores and are starting to build up an internet presence.

The best way to put up and maximize internet use is when you have an online business you can do automatic email marketing with. Email marketing is similar to the networking method of directly talking to people to promote your products. However, here you will be directly introducing your products online through their emails.

Building an opt-in list of subscribers who want to hear from you is a good strategy so that you can always keep in touch with potential customers. It is also a good reference for conveniently and quickly responding to customers’ and future potential customers’ needs. You should snail mail-follow ups and put up auto responders as well. These have completely replace direct mail and to snail mails schemes in some online businesses. Contact information can also be provided by the owner in his website.

Aside from the fact that many entrepreneurs go online today. Another reason why internet marketing works is because of the existence of search engines. The emphasis on these search engines contributes to the success of many online markets today. They make it possible for small and gigantic entrepreneurs to introduce their product to online consumers. Also, the availability and existence of various sites that offers outsourcing add up to the reasons why internet marketing works.

As a matter of fact, having your services outsourced is a good way of generating money without taking so much of your time. Outsourcing is another form of online marketing where your services or a particular product is directly advertised and is directly introduced to the consumer. Internet marketing is a success because search engines make it possible to provide its user relevant information and searches.

It has also quickly transformed and outshined yellow pages for local searches of establishments. Booking and reservations can now be done online. What’s more, since shopping online allows customers to buy products from their home, more and more people shop online more than anywhere else.

These are just few reasons why online marketing is so successful. The potential of earning lots of money is big. Online marketing is one of the best and most practical ways of investing.

Comments are off for this post

How Database Marketing Can Improve ROI

Jun 04 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Database marketing, or using a database of customers and their addresses for direct marketing, is a very popular marketing method for large businesses. It has the ability to dramatically improve ROI by using customers you have already acquired and by judging a consumer’s behavior. With the rising cost of marketing, using this method can secure better sales from your customers while keeping costs well below your budget.

Use Acquired Customers
It is no secret that marketing to acquired customers is much easier than marketing to new customers that don’t know about your business. This marketing method gives you the perfect opportunity to go through your database to find the best customers for your upcoming sales and promotions. You have to invest very little in reaching these customers, which improves your ROI.

Behavior-Based Marketing
Another part of this marketing tactic is using behavior-based marketing. Databases will not only record the address of your customers, but they track your customers’ behavior. If they are buying many health-related products from your store, then the databases will track that.

Next time you release a promotion on related products, you can direct mail this person for a great return. When you cater to a customer’s behavior and give them promotions that really benefit them, then you will often see a return.

Avoiding Spam Costs
When you send out direct mail to a large list of people you will often be considered a spammer. If you can’t directly promote products and services that are relevant to your customers, then you will often be ignored or even disliked by your customers. This leads to a big problem, because companies that spam often see fewer customers.

However, since a database tracks what your customers are doing, your marketing will remain relevant. This improves your ROI and your company’s image.

Real-Time Marketing
Many methods for procuring data take time and effort. When you use a database, it will update almost instantly whenever you gain a new customer or whenever he or she buys something. This lets you make informed marketing decisions at any time during the day.

Conclusion
Database marketing is one of the best ways to market to your customers. Not only can you improve your ROI and remain relevant to your customers, but you can avoid the costs of spam direct mailing and you can make informed decisions. Try this marketing method out and you will see just how powerful it is for your company.

Comments are off for this post

Direct Email Marketing – Hot Value at Cool Prices

Jun 03 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Direct mail marketing is not a new concept. Flyers, postcards, and catalogs have been circulated through the mail for decades. But with direct email marketing, you can accomplish the same effect with better results, and at a cheaper price.

With either type of marketing you will have to purchase leads. It may be a bit surprising how similar pricing is for email versus snail mail leads. In fact, if you purchase your email leads in bulk without only name and email address, you can even get them cheaper.

In direct mail you have to design your sales materials and have them printed. The printing alone can cost quite a bit. Additionally, if you do not have the capability to design your own materials, you will have to pay for this as well. You then have to pay postage for all of the pieces to be delivered.

Direct email marketing can cost significantly less. The only thing you have to pay for besides your leads is a way to send the emails in bulk, as well as a way to manage opt-outs. The best and cheapest way to do this is through web-based subscription software, such as autoresponders.

There are other distinct advantages to direct email marketing besides cost savings. People have become so accustomed to receiving “junk mail” that they don’t even look at it or open it anymore. Some say that the same can be said of direct email marketing, but this is not always the case.

More and more people are now using email clients to receive and check their mail. These clients automatically open an email when it is highlighted, and the email may be read even if the user doesn’t actively open it. This puts your message in front of many more people than snail mail pieces can accomplish.

Comments are off for this post

Increase Pizza Sales With Coupons and Every Door Direct Mail

Jun 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Why Use Every Door Direct Mail?

Competition between pizza restaurants has always been intense. These days it’s even worse, and the “big box” chains tend to dominate the minds of most consumers. In this environment, the best option for any pizza shop is to develop their own niche brand and a loyal following. But to do so, the pizzeria has to acquire lots of new customers. With this in mind, there is no better marketing solutions than Every Door Direct Mail from the United States Postal Service. With EDDM, your pizza menus, specials, and offers deliver directly into the hands of targeted local residents, and arrive int he mailbox “solo” – without being inserted into a coupon pack or envelope with other advertisers.

Reaching targeted customers can be not only difficult, but also a very tedious job, and most pizza operators fail to get high response rates from their efforts. The Every Door Direct Mail program is the most modern small business-friendly mailing service from the USPS. It enables small scale pizza shops to reach every household in specific neighborhoods, for less than ever before.

How Does Every Door Direct Mail Increase Pizza Sales?

Awareness of the pizza restaurant at the local level is the first step towards increasing pizza sales. However, most operators have no clue about the number of resident in their area, and even worse, don’t know how easy and inexpensive it is to mail out menus and coupons.

Every Door Direct Mail offers a complete list of the number of residents in the area, which is easily accessible online. By using the U-Select technology, any pizza operator, anywhere in the US, can enter their address and bring up an interactive map of their local surrounding areas. This tool can be used by the restaurant owner by just entering his restaurant address and zip code. The tool then displays a “point and click” map of the surrounding areas and the owner can conveniently mark his desired areas to distribute coupons and other advertising materials.

In other words, now pizza operators can target customers online, while advertising to them offline. With modern technology, direct mail advertising is experiencing a renaissance. Recent data shows that business direct mail is extremely effective and can generate significantly higher ROI when used correctly.

Every Door Direct Mail also helps the pizza operator to design and even customize EDDM advertisements totally free of cost. With most providers, the graphic design, printing, folding, setup, and mailing is bundled into one low-cost solution.

Comments are off for this post

MLM Advertising – Three Underground Direct Response MLM Advertising Tactics – Get Tons of Traffic

Jun 01 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

MLM Advertising: three Secret Direct Response MLM Advertising Tactics to increase the amount of Targeted Traffic, Leads and Sign-ups in Your MLM Business…

I recently wrote an article entitled “MLM Advertising: 3 Free MLM Advertising Strategies to Increase Traffic, Leads and Sign-ups in your Network Marketing Business.” In this article I revealed three really remarkable free strategies that you can use to promote your MLM business. While free strategies are good they tend to take a little longer than other methods to see the big results.

In this article, I will outline three outstanding direct response MLM Advertising methods that can start generating leads as quickly as today.

Direct Response MLM Advertising Method 1: PPV (Pay Per View)

With PPV Direct Response Advertising, you pay a minimal amount every time someone checks out your website. Unlike PPC (Pay Per Click Advertising) where people click to land on an advertiser’s website, PPV pops up a window right in front of the viewer’s eyes. This is an INVASIVE, In Your Face form of marketing that garners big results if done accurately. Interestingly, Millions of people worldwide have opted in to being shown advertisements in the form of popup windows. Two illustrations of services that people opt into are gamevance.com and vomba.com.

A few examples of PPV networks are.

Zango
Clicksor
AddonNetwork
eZanga
CPVMarketplace

Direct Response MLM Advertising Method 2: Cell Phone (Text messaging Advertising)

This technique includes making use of the text and apps element of cell phones to send direct ads to individual’s cell phones. I-phone users download free apps on their phones and in turn allow the app maker to show ads on their phones. Advertisers pay every time a user clicks their ad.

A few stats that make this an remarkable choice:

* At present over 61% of the World population uses a cell phone on a regular basis.

* More people have a cell phone than have a television, computer, internet or anything else you can think of!

A great example of a network that you can advertise in this medium on is Admob.

Direct Response MLM Advertising Method 3: PPC (Pay Per Click)

PPC or Pay Per Click Advertising is by far the most liked of the three techniques summarized here. With this technique you can put an ad on the search engines or on related websites and pay only when someone clicks on your add. Google AdWords is the most liked site followed by Yahoo search and MSN(Bing). This is a wonderful way to promote and will get you traffic almost immediately but it can be very pricey if you do not know what you are doing. If you do decide to pursue PPC marketing, be sure to pick up some training material on the topic from someone who has a proven success record using this strategy for MLM Advertising.

There are many resources that are available to you where you can get specific information on how to put into action the above tactics.

Comments are off for this post

In Direct Sales – Recession Proof Your Business

May 27 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

“Buyer’s Market, Seller’s Market – It’s always a Realtor’s Market”

These are the words my trainer said to me when I was studying for the Utah Real Estate Licensing Exam over 10 years ago. The same holds true in any niche where you’re offering services, and that’s one of the reasons I strongly encourage you to take a closer look at your Direct Sales business right now.

In this slowing economy, lots of folks are looking for a little extra income. Just keeping the bills paid can be a challenge – but when you throw in layoffs, rising mortgage rates, and let’s not forget the ridiculous gas prices these days, it’s not just about extra income – sometimes it’s a complete income replacement!

Now it is the perfect time to share your business opportunity. You’ve heard the adage, ‘buy low, sell high’? The same holds true in Network Marketing. Many companies are offering some tremendous savings and incentives for recruiting this summer. You owe it to everyone to share the benefits of your career. Now, I still maintain that Network Marketing isn’t for everyone, but you’d be foolish not to share your opportunity at a time when many people are literally STARVING for an income.

Here are some great tips and facts to share with your customers to let them know what a difference a network marketing career could make in their lives:

  • 96% of adults ages 25 to 44 are very interested in owning their own business.
  • 21% of baby boomers need to save at least $2 million for retirement and many have not saved enough.
  • 90% of women will assume total financial responsibility for herself at some time or another. Every woman owes it to herself to be prepared!
  • 85% of bankruptcies could be avoided with only $300 in additional monthly income.
  • More than 50% of adults in the US have purchased goods or services from a direct sales representative.
  • BusinessWeek Magazine says direct selling is a growing $30-billion-a-year business.
  • According to a poll conducted by the Direct Selling Association, additional income was the #1 reason people gave for becoming a direct selling representative.

When you have a passion for your work and love what you do, you will naturally be more successful. This holds true in every industry, not just Direct Sales/Network Marketing. There is a growing disillusionment with corporate America as downsizing continues, ethics scandals abound, and they are perceived as being too focused on the bottom line. Those that aren’t turning to private small business (solopreneurs, etc.) are still looking for help.

You have the perfect business opportunity that will allow your customers to improve their quality of life, while having a support system (fellow consultants) around them to motivate, inspire and applaud them for their hard work. When you share that opportunity with others, you are opening the door to a world of possibilities they might not even know about!

YOU are your company’s best product. You are that thing that distinguishes your products and services from every other company in the world. In this “crunch time” it is even MORE imperative that you focus on how you can ‘deliver the goods’ in a distinctive way that encourages repeat business, raving clients, and strong positive impact on your bottom line.

Are you sharing about your business? What are you sharing and how are you sharing it? What makes you remarkable?

Get out there and tell the world!

Comments are off for this post

Direct Marketing Copy – 7 Ways to Succeed When You Can’t Use an Offer to Sell

May 26 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Introduction

Crack open any direct marketing text and you will quickly learn all about the Elements of Promotion: List, Offer, Art and Copy.

You will also quickly learn that the Offer accounts for 30% of the effectiveness of any direct marketing program.

But companies working in the insurance and financial industries are generally constrained by federal and state guidelines from making a traditional offer. So what do you do when you cannot say 50% off, Buy One Get One, Early Bird Discount or Extra year of coverage FREE?

More often than not, the answer to this question is settle for less. But it does not have to be that way. There are a number of strategies you can use to boost your response rate, conversion rate and your overall ROI.

These strategies can be implemented by any smart marketing team, do not cost a lot and are all explained right here. So please, read on.

1. Leverage your USP to focus and strengthen the appeal of your message

If you want your direct marketing efforts to sell hard and stand out from the pack, you need to leverage your Unique Selling Proposition or USP. A USP allows you to quickly demonstrate what makes you different from the competition and focuses your message so that you always speak with the same voice.

General ad agencies have been using the concept of the USP to successfully differentiate their products and stake out turf in the marketplace for years. You just have to watch television for an hour to see commercials that demonstrate that the companies with household names know their USPs and know how to use them to put their products across.

Many direct marketers think they get little or no advantage from a USP because they narrowly target their audience. But actually the opposite is true. Because direct marketers know where their leads and their sales come from, they are able target their USP towards the people they most want to reach and offer that target audience a worthwhile benefit they will not find anywhere else.

To use a Unique Selling Proposition in this manner, you simply set up it up like this:

For people who meet a very specific set of criteria, our product is the best choice because it provides this unique benefit.

So give your marketers, your copywriters, and your sales people sales people a solid platform from which to launch their efforts. You will find that they will automatically:

  • Speak with one voice.
  • Reinforce each others efforts.
  • Create more effective solicitations.
  • Achieve better overall results.
  • Improve your ROI.

Essential Elements of your Unique Selling Proposition

The concept of the USP was first described by Rosser Reeves, former chair of Ted Bates in his book Reality in Advertising. According to Reeves, the USP has these three characteristics.

  1. You make a proposition to your prospect that says, Buy this product and you will get this benefit.
  2. The proposition must be unique, one the competition cannot claim or does not offer.
  3. The proposition must be appealing to your prospect and strong enough to provide a sustainable competitive advantage.

2. Pump up the value of your products and services.

You may not be able to make a standard offer. But that does not mean you cannot offer prospects something that makes them sit up and take notice. Good old fashioned value.

Pump up the value of your product and that value can go a very long way towards making your customer forget the lack of an offer.

Begin by referring back to your USP and take a long hard look at the unique differentiator of your product and its supporting benefits. Then make sure that those benefits are clearly stated and given place of pride in your solicitations.

Do not make the mistake of substituting features for benefits. For example: many companies place this common service feature in the middle of a bulleted list believing that that they have provided an important benefit:

24-Hour claim service

But prospects read right past it without realizing its importance because they can not see the benefit hidden away inside the feature. To make your prospect realize the true value of 24-hour claim service, why not pump up its value? All you have to do is demonstrate what it really means by using copy like this:

No matter when, or where, you have an accident, we will always be just a toll-free call away. 24 hours a day. 7 days a week. Holidays included.

If you offer a broad range of discounts, pump up your value by pointing up the total savings of these discounts to your prospects. Most companies say:

People save an average of $400 when they switch.

Instead, demonstrate how many ways to save you provide by saying something like this:

We offer 8 different discounts to make it easy for people like you to save average of $400. Add up your discounts. Then decide what you will do with all the money you save!

I am sure you can see just how compelling a feature becomes when you exploit the benefit it provides. Now think how much more compelling your copy, and your overall solicitation, will be when you pump up the value of your products and services.

Are you overlooking benefits your prospects would love?

Spend five minutes in Direct Marketing and someone will tell you that benefits sell harder than features. And that the more benefits you promote, the harder your advertising will sell.

Yet with all the talk about benefits, it is surprising how many companies forget to mention convenient, benefit-laden services. Instead they hide these benefits away until the prospect becomes a customer, and then introduce them as Customer Service.

Do not miss the opportunity to hype these hidden benefits in your advertising. Instead, take the time to review all the services you offer your customers before your next acquisition campaign. Then allow your prospects to see how easy their lives will be when they choose to do business with you. Consider everything you do, including:

  • Automated payment options.
  • Monthly payment plans.
  • Automatic coverage increases or policy upgrades.
  • Accident forgiveness.
  • One-stop claim service.
  • Annual coverage reviews.
  • 24-hour claim service
  • 24-hour customer service

Start demonstrating the benefits of features like these. Then sit back and watch how this simple technique can improve your results.

3. Find your best prospects by getting to know your best customers.

Find a good prospect; the most important part of what makes your direct mail solicitation successful is already under wraps. But where do you look find the prospects who are most receptive?

Right under your nose.

The truth is your current customer base is a comprehensive list of the best prospects you have ever found. Each and every one of those prospects has already bought what you are selling. So if you want a better prospect list, all you have to do is:

  • Study your current customers.
  • Discover what attributes they have in common.
  • Find more people with those same attributes.

The science of data analytics calls the process of finding prospects just like your clients cloning. Any number of companies specializing in data analytics can easily clone your best customers and provide you with a list of individuals that should respond well to your solicitation.

To clone your customers, data analytics firms import names from your customer database along with any information you have about those customers. Then they carefully overlay additional information based on inferences made by what they already know.

Finally, they use this information to tell you exactly who your clients are and based on that information, which your best prospects are likely to be. This information then allows you to build highly targeted, better performing lists.

You are probably working with a company that can perform this type of customer analysis right now. So if you want a better performing prospect list all you have to do is tell your data firm who you are looking for.

Then leverage the power of your newly improved prospect list by writing advertising that exploits the needs and desires you know these prospects share. The results are sure to surprise you.

What are your criteria for a great customer?

To use your best customers to find your best prospects, you need to know exactly who they are. That means setting specific criteria by which to rank the people who buy your products and services. And that means knowing what is really important to you. Start by asking you what makes a good customer. Is it:

  • Frequency or number of purchases.
  • Size of policy or number of items insured.
  • Number of family members insured. Income/education level.
  • Method of premium payment
  • Multi-lines purchases.
  • Number and sizes of claims

Once you have a detailed picture of your best customer, you are well on the way to cloning that customer over and over again.

You also have all the information you need to hit your best prospect with a message that closely targets their needs, wants and attitudes, giving you a highly effective way of getting them to buy.

4. Change your point of view

As a marketer, nobody has to tell you that your goal is to generate more sales from all your channels. So you spend your time concentrating on how to increase response, lower your cost per order and improve your overall ROI.

Of course you do? It is what you want.

But while you concentrate what you want, do not forget to concentrate on the one thing that is most likely to help you achieve your goal. What your customer wants.

It seems incredible but more often than I care to admit, smart marketers hand me a marketing creative brief that carefully outlines all of their goals and neglects to provide me with the information I need to make that product attractive to their customers.

In short, they have forgotten to look at what they are selling from the point of view of their prospects. Your prospects do not care about whether or not you beat your control, or even if you make money. All they want to know is: What is your product or service going to do for me?

That is the question you must keep firmly planted in front of you whenever you begin any new marketing venture. If you keep finding innovative ways to answer your prospects questions, you will keep finding innovative ways to meet your sales goals.

So take the time to get inside the head of your prospects. Communicate what you know about what they want to the people who create your advertising and watch what happens.

Here is a marketing creative brief designed to create sales.

To change your perspective on your advertising, change the way you brief your colleagues. Answering the series of questions below will force you to think like your prospects and customers, which means you will automatically answer the question What is in it for me? from their point of view.

Marketing Creative Brief

What is the key fact or the most important thing we must know about this product and this advertising assignment?

What is the single most important benefit our product offers? What facts support this benefit? What are we really selling?

Who are we selling to? Why are we selling to these prospects now? What action do we want our prospects to take?

What negatives might our prospects cite regarding our product or our category in general?

Who is our competition and what do our prospects think of them?

Why are we better at providing what our prospects want than the competition? What medium/media are we using to reach our prospects?

What is the tone and manner of this project?

What elements are mandatory?

When must the project be completed?

What is the budget?

5. Use emotion to strengthen your message.

Your prospects are never going to purchase your products because it is the logical thing to do. But they might just buy because it is the smart thing to do.

See the difference?

Unless your advertising evokes an emotional response from your prospects, you will never get the great results you want, even if you have a great offer. And if you do not have a great offer? You have to create a great desire for what you are selling, or you are sunk.

You see, it is our emotions that move us, not our ability to think rationally. Even someone who claims to be completely unmoved by anything other than cold, hard logic will not act until he is motivated to do so by his feelings.

To use your prospects emotions to do what you want, you have to think about what they want. Remember, your prospects only want to know, What is in it for me? So ask yourself these two questions:

  • What is the most important thing that my prospect wants that will draw them to my message?
  • What is the primary emotion I must target?

Or in other words, give him the one thing he wants, and offer her the one thing she longs for.

I can feel some staid bankers, and insurance professionals backing off in shock. Talking about emotion in direct marketing can feel sleazy or underhanded to people who deal with the financial bottom line every day.

You have to understand that most people will not purchase a flood insurance policy because it is a logical way to pay for repairs. They will only grab for their checkbook when someone tells them that water driven toward their homes by hurricane-force winds has the power of a 10-ton locomotive.

You see? Fear is a great emotional driver. So is love. So is greed. Why do you think the word FREE is so powerful?

Your package does not have to be large, expensive or highly promotional to pack a high emotional wallop. An official looking package gets opened because it makes people nervous. An invitation-style package because it makes people feel wanted and maybe even a little important.

And once you reach out and grab your prospects with emotion, then you have the ability to follow up with logic. That is because while people make the decision to buy based on emotion, they love to back that emotional decision up with logical reasons to make the purchase.

So do not neglect to feel the pain your prospects feel, or rouse their anger or stroke their pride. That is what makes them buy.

How many of these Persuasive Emotions make it into Your Advertising?

Take a few moments to analyze the ads you think are most effective and you will discover that the marketer probably started by asking one, or more, of these questions

  • Does your prospect want relief from something? (freedom from anxiety)
  • Is your prospect afraid of something? (fear)
  • Does your prospect want to feel sexier? (vanity)
  • Does your prospect want to appear to be smarter? (pride)
  • Does your prospect have an unfulfilled hope of some kind? (longing for fulfillment)
  • Is your prospect insecure? About what? (Worry)

Then start asking questions of your own. The types of emotions you will uncover are endless. In fact, I think you will eventually be adding to this list.

Altruism Anger Benevolence Boredom Confidence Confusion Curiosity Desperation Envy Greed / make money Guilt Happiness Hope/optimism Laziness / avoid effort Loneliness Love Lust Optimism Patriotism Pride Save money / frugality Save time Self-reliance / independence Surprise Sympathy Vanity / be popular / social acceptance Whimsy Win acclaim Wit

6. Tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth Part I : Do not make any promises you cannot keep.

There is a television show about an ad agency on TNT called Trust Me, and its name is very apropos. All marketers and advertisers are in the trust business and everything we do either builds trust or tears it down.

We constantly make promises, both explicit and implicit, to our customers and prospects. While we keep our explicit promises very well, we tend to break a great many of our implicit promises.

Take for example, the popular Express Mail format. It is intended to be mistaken for genuine express delivery, but when the prospect opens what he perceives to be an important document, all too often he only finds junk mail. This disappoints your prospect, breaks the bond of trust and loses you sales.

All too often marketers mistake the format for the message. They think that if they put their sales message in an official format it will automatically lift response over a promotional mailing. More often than not, they are wrong. Why? Because they are not using the format in a truthful way.

Here is an excellent example of what I mean:

Some years ago, a telecommunications company mailed $5 and $20 checks in an official manila envelope. Cash the check and you switched your long distance service. The recipient could clearly see the check safety paper through the address window, and a message to the postmaster helped to make the envelope look important and valuable. When the prospects opened the package, they got what they expected, responded accordingly and the package remained the control for years.

Then one of the marketers who developed this check package decided it would work well for a financial company. This company had a credit card rewards program that mailed $25 savings bonds to cardholders when they earned 2,500 points. The same check format was used, but a facsimile of a savings bond replaced the check. Recipients quickly figured out they would have to spend $2,500 to get $25 that the solicitation promised. Response was dismal and the solicitation was an embarrassing failure.

It is easy to why the first package was successful. It delivered on its implicit promise. The second one did not and failed.

Yes, the first package had a hard cash offer and the second did not, but you cannot blame the lack of an offer on the failure of this package. A promotional package mailed alongside it, and with no offer, garnered outstanding results. The outer envelope had a headline that read:

In 2016 a college education will cost over $120,000. Are you saving enough?

Inside the letter offered the rewards card as an easy way to supplement college savings and the package out-performed all expectations because it told the truth.

So do not make the mistake of thinking a powerful format alone will influence prospects to respond. You will only succeed when your message fulfills the implicit promise your package makes.

Tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth Part II : Avoid a sea of footnotes.

Pick up a piece of direct mail in any one of a number of highly regulated industries and you will not have to look far to find an asterisk.

Sometimes those asterisks appear in the headline.

Sometimes they appear in the headline on the front of the envelope.

I am often told that the sea of footnotes is part of an effort to be totally honest. Other times I am told that they are required by law.

You cannot always avoid an asterisk and a footnote and a lot of unexciting information is required by law. But just popping in a footnote every time you are forced to mention a negative can actually hurt your overall credibility. Prospects very quickly begin to recognize that an asterisk is a red flag denoting that some bad news is coming. So instead of hiding a problematic fact, the footnote not only calls attention to it, but also tells your prospect that you are trying to fool him by attempting to hide the bad news.

So what should you do? Find a way to state as much as you can as forthrightly as you can. For example, if you are selling auto insurance you need to tell people who will qualify for your best rates. Often you will see a statement like the one below:

Safe drivers save money with our best rates.*

* You must not have received a moving violation nor had an at-fault accident in the past five years.

But the requirement seems less burdensome, and your copy appears much more open and friendly if the qualification is stated like this:

We cannot offer our best rates to everyone, but if you are a safe driver who has not had a moving violation or an at-fault accident in the past five years, we stand ready to help you save money now.

Both examples state plainly that you must be ticket and accident free to get the best rates, but in the first example, you give your prospect a benefit and then take it away in footnote. While in the second example, you bestow a special benefit on the people who qualify.

Being honest and forthright can also help you to sell harder. Imagine how intriguing mailing would be if the envelope had a headline that read:

Open now to find out why the state of Idaho will not let us make you any special offers (and how we can still help you save an average of $300).

Yes, Terms and Conditions will still wind up on the back panel of a brochure or tucked in a box on the back of a letter. But the more straight you are with your prospect, the better your results will be.

7. Ask for the sale. Ask again. Then make it easy to say yes.

Have you ever received a solicitation, decided to buy and then discovered you could not find the order card? Or have received an e-mail invitation and struggled to find the link to reply?

Frustrating, right?

Yet far too many companies spend far too much money on direct mail, e-mail and other forms of direct response advertising that actually makes it difficult – or impossible – for a prospect to respond.

I once received a beautiful dimensional mailing from an automobile manufacturer. It was an Advent calendar, and each window featured another benefit of the cars. It cost a fortune, but nowhere in the piece was there a phone number, or an address for a dealership near my home. I was entranced, but to what purpose? There was no one I could talk to about buying a car. (I was in the market, too!)

This car company threw their money away in a very dramatic fashion. But even experienced direct markets miss plenty of opportunities to encourage their prospects to respond.

Here is a short list of common mistakes:

You forget to ask for the sale. It may seem pushy, but once your prospect is interested, they want you to tell them to buy and to show them how to do it. So be forceful. Make sure your call to action is clear, concise, easy to find and repeated often.

You give your prospect too many choices. Less is more. You want your prospect to make a simple yes or no decision. So do not clutter up your piece with additional choices. Forcing them to choose between a dizzying array of options like buy now, attend a seminar, and request more information by mail only confuse your prospect and encourage him to do nothing

You offer too many ways to respond. Yes, some people prefer to mail a card. Others want to call. Still others like to check your website. But giving four options and repeating them constantly only confuses your prospect. Offer several options if you must but pick one as your primary response mechanism and push that one harder. Response is sure to improve.

You make the order card or application hard to complete. The harder you ask your prospect to work, the less likely he is to respond. So make forms as easy to complete as possible and if the information is available without causing privacy issues fill in as much as you can.

You make it hard to find the response device. Toll-free numbers set in 24 point type may not always look pretty, but they get noticed. So do large bursts on e-mails that say Click here to order. And don’t hide an order form on the last panel of a brochure. Instead clearly mark it, and include a call to action on the front or at the top. Then put it where the client cannot miss it and refer to it often.

You can never mention the toll-free number too many times.

It is axiomatic. The more times a prospect is told to call a toll-free number, the more likely he is to respond. So find as many natural opportunities as you can to tell your prospect to call and then provide that number. How many times can you repeat the toll-free number without interfering with the message? A lot more than you think.

I find that striving for six mentions in a one-page letter is an excellent goal. It cannot always be achieved, but each additional mention generally helps to lift response. But remember, the mention of the number must be organic. If it sounds forced, you can turn your prospect off.

Conclusion

Try these suggestions for yourself, and I think you will find that you will see an increase in response. But remember, the only way to know for sure if something will work for you is to test, test, test! So get out there and test and see just how well you can succeed.

Comments are off for this post

« Newer posts Older posts »