Hi, I am a direct marketing specialist that has helped hundreds of direct marketers grow their businesses. You do not know me, but after reading my views on direct marketing during an economic slowdown, I believe it can give you business an edge in taking market share from your competitors.
Today the consumer is being financially squeezed by many economic realities. Soaring gas prices a slowing economy, and job insecurities, just to highlight a few. All this is currently having a very negative impact of the consumer's mindset for spending. Odds are your company is also feeling the consumer's anxiety about the future. When I talk to some of the clients I do work for, they have told me that their web sales and response rates have declined, or at best are treading water. The same holds true for the traditional mailers. They are also experiencing consumer pessimism that is reflected in lower response rates.
OK, so does this mean that you have to hunker down and accept all this as the reality of the times for doing business? Absolutely not . . . But most direct marketers unfortunately will. The enlightened few will view it differently and become proactive, and embrace the challenges.
"Keep on doing what your doing in direct marketing and you'll keep on getting what your getting in declining sales and profits"
Today savvy direct marketer realizes that the status quo of what worked during the good times isn't working so well anymore. Hundreds of thousand of companies are competing on the web and via traditional direct mail for the consumer's discretionary income. Many are destined to fail. Survival of the fittest is being played out, and the marketers who DO NOT make direct marketing refinements will become extinct.
So exactly what can you do to help guarantee that our company not only survives, but also takes market share from the competition?
To begin with you must make absolutely sure that your direct marketing efforts utilize all the responsive techniques that have prove to drive sales. Direct marketing is paying explicit attention to the details of the business, especially now. The day of “lets run it up the flag pole and see how it flies" is long gone. Today it is making positively sure that you have the three basic RIGHTS of direct response in place, or your company is destined to fail.
The three basic RIGHTS that must be in place are:
RIGHT #1: You must have the right copy that talks to the customer NOT at them. It must emotionally engage them and give them compelling benefits of your products and how it will help THEM. Does your copy utilize “YOU" or “YOUR" as much as is feasible? Does each product have a benefit headline? Do you utilize words (under seven letters is best) that the customer will actually understand? Do you answer all the questions in the customer's mind that could be a potential roadblock to a sale? It's your job to remove all the roadblocks that would deter a response.
RIGHT #2: The right creative, teamed with the right colors and graphics are essential to getting a response. Does your creative and graphics actually help to sell the product, or do they detract from it? Do the photos you use reflect you're demographic, and do they add to the enhancement of the copy in obtaining a response? Do the colors you use on your site, or in your mail pieces turn on response emotions or do they turn them off? Certain colors evoke specific feelings; this should not be left to chance. The type you use, and how it is displayed directly affects sales. Type that is NOT black, or that is reversing out of a background has statistically proven in tests to be harder to read, and slower to comprehend which is a roadblock to a sale. Are you using Sans Serif type in your electronic marketing? It is easier to read on a computer screen. The last thing you want is for a potential customer to click away because they can't read your type or it is to small in point size.
RIGHT#3: The right product with the right prices is vital. Customers are like a peregrine falcons. They scan multiple sites and catalogs to find the right product that is priced right, with the right shipping charge, and right guarantee. 30% (or more!) of the customers on your file are on your competitors files. Products priced right? Do you offer two for pricing? If you have exclusive proprietary products do you note it? Do you offer incentives for large orders, for example like free shipping, a free gift, or bonus coupons for future orders? Do you use testimonials about your products or company to melt away the customer's cynicism?
If you get all three of the RIGHTS listed above right your chances of getting the response is almost guaranteed. If you miss just one of the RIGHTS it can be a no sale and your clicked away, or your mail piece is resigned to the circular file.
Hey I do not have all the answers, but I have been totally involved in the direct marketing for over three decades. I have helped hundreds of direct marketers grow their businesses and profits. I know how to write responsive copy that moves people, and in turn moves sales. I know how to make sure all the RIGHTS are in place, so as to help guarantee a response. I know what is needed creatively from a direct marketing standpoint to move a customer to take action and respond.
Questions for YOU?
Are your sales at this time where you want them to be? Are you happy with your direct response results? Are you 100% sure your have done everything to employ proven direct marketing principles to grow your business and assure it's future?
If you cannot definitely say “YES" to these questions, they maybe we should have a chat.
SO WHAT IS IT I CAN DO FOR YOU? To put you on the same page with the people you work for. . . your customers. Do you have well thought out marketing and advertising strategies that really focus on people? Are your web or direct mail offers, truly positioned toward the specific group of people your offer is intended for? Does your copy and creative REALLY talk to them? Do you need internal package inserts, or direct mail offers that boost response? My 27 years of direct response expertise has helped hundreds of direct marketers grow their businesses. Visit my website at genebehage.com or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org