The most important part of any marketing you do is direct marketing. This includes letters, postcards, brochures, newspaper or magazine coupons, telemarketing, TV or radio direct response commercials, e-mails, and the copy on your web site.
For any direct marketing campaign to be successful, you need to have a combination of marketing tools in order to make your offer repeatedly. One of the most potent tools you can use in your direct makreting is the direct mail letter. The letter, whether you're using it through the mail or the internet, is the actual sales pitch. It relays what your product or service is, and how much it can benefit the prospect. In short, the letter should do everything that a traditional person-to-person sales pitch does.
Here are ten things that will make your letters more effective:
1. It must have a headline. The headline is the ad for the letter. It flags down the reader to read more.
2. Present the facts. Begin with a statement of basic truth, known and accepted by the reader. By introducing known facts, your create believability for later statements in the letter.
3. Do as much personalizing as possible. Personalize name, address, special interests, and anything else you can.
4. State your offer in the beginning, again in the middle, and again at the end.
5. Create a sense of urgency by giving prospects a cut-off date by which time your readers must respond to your offer.
6. Always include a P.S. The P.S. is the second thing readers read, following the headline.
7. Stress your main points with underlines, bold type, all caps, or a yellow highlighter effect. But don't stress too much.
8. Use short paragraphs, sentences, and words. In lettes of two or more pages use subheads.
9. Use black ink, plus blue to underline more important points. Print your signiture and make notes in the margins or hand-write a P.S.
10. Tell the reader exactly what to do upon completing the letter, along with how to do it, and when to do it.
A succesful direct marketing campaign might consist of four pieces sent at two-week intervals: a two page letter, then a one page letter, then a postcard, then a telephone follow-up. It is important to remember that even the best letters don't get read if the envelope doesn't get opened. So make the envelope enticing to get your recipients to open it. You can do this by putting a "teaser" line on the outside, motivating the person to open it. You could use a window envelope with a photo of free gift, resemblance of a check, or some other unique design. This increases curiosity and gives the recipient a reason to open the envelope.
The same is true for your e-mails. Make sure you put something recognizable in the subject line so that the recipient will recognize that is from you and will peak their curiosity, otherwise, they'll likely delete it without opening it.
You should have an entire file of letters for different occasions: promotions, offers, thank-you, follow-up, referral seekers, and more. Always test you letters until you have a file of proven winners.
All contents Copyright(c)2004 Joe Love and JLM & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Joe Love draws on his 25 years of experience helping both individuals and companies build their businesses, increase profits, and achieve total success. A former ad agency executive and marketing consultant, Joe's work in personal development focuses on helping his clients identify hidden marketable assets that create windfall opportunities and profits, as well as sound personal happiness and peace.
Joe can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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