What Every Business Owner Needs To Know – One of The Seven Musts of Marketing – Direct Mail

In my role as executive coach and business consultant, I come across many opportunities to assess and evaluate technology based solutions at the enterprise, department and individual level. While technology implementations can represent challenges and occasional risks at deployment, to ignore the current patterns and solutions to improving interest in your company solutions as a product or service, could be very costly to your top line performance.There are Seven Musts of Marketing that benefit from the integration of current technology based solutions. One of them is Direct Mail. I recently had the opportunity to speak with Keith Goodman, Corporate VP Sales for Modern Postcard, with Corporate offices in Carlsbad, and a Chamber member, who shared his perspectives on this very important strategic component of business development.Miguel:”Keith, what is this thing called direct marketing and why should we care? Keith Goodman:”Well, at the end of the day, there are really two basic categories.I’m sure we could break that down into about twenty, but two basic categories of advertising. One of those is brand awareness, where you’re really trying to get your name out there. You want to establish your brand and let people know that you’re there, and really communicate the values of your business and everything else. The other side is what we call direct marketing, where it’s really driving to get a response. You’re trying to drive the person to actually create a transaction.Especially now, in the economic situation that we’re dealing with, direct marketing is becoming more and more appropriate and accepted as the norm because at the end of the day, businesses are much more interested in actually getting people in the door and driving revenues than they are in getting their name out. Many times, it’s really hard to monetize a brand campaign, where it’s very easy to measure and monetize a direct campaign. So, I think that that’s probably the simplest way to put it. I’m sure I don’t have a couple of hours to expand on that.Miguel:”Keith, how can business owners better appreciate the value that Modern Postcard brings to them in terms of the results of their direct mail/marketing campaigns?Keith:”We go through a series of questions to get a really good idea on who are the right prospects, who are their best customers, what are they buying, what are their buying habits, how do they actually generate a transaction, are they buying on the Web, are they coming into the store, are they talking to a salesperson, is it a complex product that needs to have a salesperson talk to a customer before they make the purchase decision? So, we take all these things into effect.Then we take that information and we say, “Okay, here is what we consider your best target market.” And it might be a couple of them. The best targets might be families with kids as well as wealthy singles, so we recommend testing. We recommend testing whenever possible. It is the best way to develop the best marketing piece over time. You can do that in direct mail and you can’t do that with a lot of other types of advertising, where you can test simultaneously.Then once we have the list put together, we’ll then work with the client on creative. Many times, the client will already have creative, at which point we’ll ask if they would mind if we review the creative, look at it, run it by our copywriters and designers, see if we can come up with any ideas that might make it a little bit more successful. If they don’t have creative, we will work with them in creating a piece, using their imagery if they have it, some of the copy that they have, information on their business, benefits, that type of thing, and get all that information put together. We have a team of great graphic designers here where we’ll put together the mail piece that is associated with the target market.We also have our own in-house list brokerage so we have access to over 75,000 different lists that are out there, so we do a pretty exhaustive search on the lists that would fit their target market the best. We also have technology that allows us to analyze and model their data so we can take a customer’s data, analyze it and profile it, give the client back a profile of what their customers look like, and then identify the people that most likely resemble their best customers. So, it allows us to really go in and fine-tune on who are the people that are most likely to respond. Using the modeling on the business-to-consumer side, we’ve been able to increase response rates anywhere between 200 and 400 percent by using this technology, and it’s a very incremental increase in price, small incremental increase, over what normal data would cost. So, it’s been highly successful for our clients, and we’ve seen a huge increase in the number of clients that are using that technology.Miguel:Keith, you have just described the perfect example of the linking technology in terms of results, to the goals of the business owner. Your firm, Modern Postcard, brings to the table. Keith how does a business owner get in touch with you to begin to leverage the use of this technology in their business?Keith:My direct line in is 760-692-3359.

Email Marketing – 6 Reasons to Use Emails in Marketing

1) IT IS RELATIVELY LOW BUDGET.

According to most research reports on the effectiveness of email marketing, email is 20 times more effective than direct mail. Most people are more likely to open and read an email than open a direct mail package. In most cases, most of your customers who have received emails from you have chosen to receive the communication from you and are more receptive to your offerings.

Imagine a simple direct mail package which consists of a cover letter, a direct mail offer and reply envelope typically costs an average of $2 to mail. Email on the other hand cost you almost next to nothing except for the Internet connection which you pay to your Internet service provider every month.

2) IT IS EFFECTIVE

According to statistics from the Direct Marketing Association, the opt-in response rate for emails is 50 times greater than traditional advertising. As of 2010, email has a return-of-investment (ROI) of $42 for every $1 spent.

3) IMMEDIACY

By using email as a marketing tool, it allows marketers to generate rapid responses. In addition, it creates an electronic tracking link that allows them to measure the response to each email campaign they have sent out. Statistics that can be instantly generated include,

· Open rate of emails: That is the number of emails that get opened versus number of emails that were sent out.
· Click thru rate: The number of times a link in an email message is click thru.
· Bounced rate: The number of emails that were not delivered successfully.
· Sales: Number of sales generated if there is a payment link embedded with an email message.

These are valuable statistics that can help marketers determine the success or failure of their campaign. Unlike traditional forms of marketing such as direct mail, the information and feedback may not be that immediate. Marketers have to wait for three to six months before they can determine the success of a campaign. Email marketing changes all that and creates a form of immediate feedback.

4) FOCUSSED AND TARGETED.

By leveraging on email marketing tools such as an auto responder, you can segment your list of subscribers by

· Demographics
· Purchasing history
· Interest

This allows you to tailor your messages and offers to the individual recipient, thereby boosting your response rate.

Email marketing allows you to focus your offers to customers on your segment who are most likely to be interested in a particular product or service offering.

5) IT IS RELATIVELY EASY

Nowadays, creating an email marketing campaign can be as easy as writing an email. There are some auto responders that allows you to use professional html templates, interesting graphics of your product or service and an intuitive editor. These tools can be valuable to small business owners who do not have large budgets to spend on advertising. These tools allow the small business owner to leverage on tools like these to make themselves look like big corporations sending these emails.

6) YOU CAN AUTOMATE IT

If you are using an auto responder to send emails, you can write the emails and offerings in advance and send them out automatically to subscribers on your list on a predetermined date. For instance, if you know your business is going to be busy before ‘Thanksgiving’, you can set a date on your message system to send out messages or greetings on that day so your customers can receive your offers without you having to remember to do it.
Email marketing is an effective way and low-cost way to reach out to your customers. It can be a very good way to market your products or services and allows you to follow-up with your customers in an effective way.

Men and Women in Network Marketing

Many of us have grown up to believe that women do the grocery shopping and men take out the garbage. While the 20th and 21st centuries have seen quite a bit of change in these social statuses, there are still some questions about the roles of men and women in network marketing.

While men and women have different communication styles, both genders can be equally successful when it comes to selling products and building teams.

Network marketing is based on relationships. These relationships are what will help you sell products and find new distributors. Men and women both have the ability to build relationships.

I’ve been asked if product line matters in gender roles. I have not seen gender affect sales. In my network marketing experiences I’ve seen men recognized for sales by companies selling primarily women’s products such as jewelry and perfumes. I’ve also seen men recognized for selling products that most believe need to be sold via home parties.

Technology today is incredible. I’ve seen You Tube videos of men holding home parties and those in attendance have had a blast.

Relationships are about communication and connecting with others. Men and women both are able to do this. Over the years I’ve taken many communication courses and as part of the course we are always divided into groups depending on our personality type. While there are several theories on how to divide the personality groups, the bottom line is almost always four different groups.

When you look at these groups, there is a mixture of men and women in each group. It is the goal of each group to learn how to effectively communicate with those in each of the other groups. In other words, we aren’t learning to communicate with a man or a woman, but a distinct personality type.

Both men and women can be successful in network marketing. Just remember, it’s all about the relationships.