Charlie Cook's MArketing for Success Insider's Club

Direct Mail

6 Ways to Lose Money In Direct Mail

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   March 5, 2010

1. Dash off a letter, then photocopy it on cheap bond, and send it with a business card… and call it a direct mail campaign.

Or worse yet – photocopy your old brochure and send it with a business card and call it direct mail.  Then, when it doesn’t work call me up and complain, “Yea, we tried direct mail and it doesn’t work.”  Real direct mail letters and literature are created from scratch with their original purpose defined as “to use as a direct mail solicitation,” and the objective of “To generate a phone call.”

And BTW, a real direct mail “campaign” isn’t a single mailing of anything.  Campaign = more than one mailing. Read More »


A Winning Promotional Strategy

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   February 5, 2010

Here’s how to get your best prospects to call you, and the cost to you is $20. Send me the $20 and I’ll tell you.

It was a joke.  Come-on, lighten up.  You can send me the $20 later.  It does cost $20 a lead, but hey, they’re your best prospects — and you’re going to get to them to call you.  How much is that very warm lead worth?  What are you paying to get each lead to call you now? Read More »


10 Steps To Take Before Sending Direct Mail

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   December 5, 2009

One of my readers asked “How do I market a product?”  Yea.  It’s just that simple. And here’s your simple answer:  Invest time, money or energy.  Or just pick two.  Or, maybe it is just that simple.

The first questions about marketing take into consideration if you are marketing a product or a service, if it’s local (geographic marketing) or national; industrial, business to business; to a wide or narrow niche, or a retail product through wholesalers or directly through retail stores to consumers.

Also – how much does your product cost, what is the sales cycle, and is it need-driven? Impulse? Or seasonal?  Is price important?  Read More »


I Got Your Email. The Reason I Didn’t Read It Is…

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   November 19, 2009

Yea, I got your email yesterday.

I get everyone’s email, at least that’s the way it seems.  500 Messages a day.  Including, ahem, enlargement products, low mortgage rates, sex from Russian women who are lonely, free money from the Prime Minister of Nigeria, Viagra stores, a whole barrage of messages in Spanish which I don’t speak, and now in alphabets I can’t decipher.

Yes, I’m sure I received the email from you, but just refresh me – what was it about? Read More »


Improving “Glance Readership” In Post Cards Part III

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   November 5, 2009

Let’s see, where were we…  oh yes, you were bitching, er… complaining that your post card wasn’t long enough to sell your products, and I said you’re right – it isn’t.   The ONLY job of the post card is to make the reader pick up the phone and call YOU, then YOU sell your products.  To do that, offer something FREE. Read More »


Improve “Glance Readership” Part II

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   October 19, 2009

Glance Readership is the 2 seconds you get when someone first picks up your post card.  In this time they decide to either read it — or throw it out (along with your money).

In part one of this article, we discussed creating a great headline to drive readers into reading the rest of the post card text.  This was by using Read More »


How To Improve “Glance Readership” In Post Cards

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   October 5, 2009

Post cards make sense in today’s bludgeoned economy. They’re cheaper to print than a full direct mail package, easier to handle, and are less costly to mail. They can be effective if created correctly. Read More »


How To Use Post Cards To Get Phone Calls & Referrals

By Jeffrey Dobkin   |   January 5, 2009

I don’t have a lot of space so I’ll get right to the point: A personal letter is the best marketing tool for personal communication to your personal clients, even when sent to all 100,000 of them. referral marketingWhat? You don’t have 100,000 clients. Me neither. Sigh…

In a letter you have time and space to sell sell sell. You can explain benefits, features; show facts and figures. A consultative sell?

No problem in a letter: you can explain what you’re selling, why you’re selling it, then why your customers absolutely need it because it will be so good for them and best for their family, just initial here and here and send back, and we’ll take care of the rest. Read More »


Do Postcards Work for Small Business Marketing?

By Charlie Cook   |   March 28, 2005

“Do you suggest post-cards being sent out to other business? We have started to brainstorm various selling tactics but aren’t 100% sure.” – Lisa Welch

Postcards are a great way to generate leads but by themselves are unlikely to generate a sale. If you have the right marketing message you can use postcards to prompt prospects to call you or visit your web site. When they do you can follow up with the essential marketing information to build credibility, define value and move them towards a sale. – Charlie Cook

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Do You Have Strategies for Direct Mail?

By Charlie Cook   |   January 18, 2005

“Do you have strategies for direct mail for the mortgage industry?” – Jamie Gould

Direct mail isn’t a marketing strategy but rather one marketing tactic that can help you implement your marketing strategy. Do you have a written marketing plan that details your marketing strategy?

When you send out your mailing you want people to open it and read it. You want people to quickly decide they’re interested and you want them to contact you, by the hundreds. Does this happen when you send out mailings? Do you want to improve your response to your mailings?

The first step is to make sure you have a brilliant marketing message, one that gets your prospects’ attention. I’ve detailed how to write your maketing messages in 15 Second Marketing

and in Creating Opportunity with Next Step Networking.

Getting attention is the first step. The next is prompting your prospects to contact you. One of the best ways to do this is to offer a free guide relevant to your products and services that they can’t live without. It might be “10 Secrets of Saving Money on Mortgages.” I’ve detailed this strategy in The 5 Principles of Highly Effective Marketing.

Direct mail can be a great marketing tool and can help you attract many more qualified prospects, if you know how to use it to get attention, position your firm and sell your services.

– Charlie Cook

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