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Direct Marketing 101 Workshop 5

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Part 5 in a series of 5 presentations providing an overview of direct marketing.

Part 5 in a series of 5 presentations providing an overview of direct marketing.

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  • In direct selling, the objective is to get direct by-mail, phone, fax, web, commitments…the actual order. The strategy is to tell as much as possible, so that all of the prospects questions are answered in the prospects mind and they make the buying decision immediately. No salesman is involved. The strategy is to tell as much as possible within the constraints of the medium involved. This is why, on television, most direct selling commercials are 90 to 120 seconds long. Different formats may do better for different types of offers. Self mailers work well for seminars.
  • In today’s marketing environment, more often than not the client may not have all the answers that are needed to create the advertisement, so the agency has to be able to get that information from the client or interpret what they are able to get from the client and fill in the gaps.
  • What everyone needs to know especially the creative key. Description of product: What product or service are you offering? Describe it in 50 words or less. Be sure to enclose a sample of the product. Purpose of product: What does the product do? How is it used? How does it work? Product features: Give all the details about the product - color, size, weight, material, number of parts, power ratings, number of working parts, and/or whatever other facts and specifications are appropriate. Main benefits of the product: What is the key sales appeal of this product? What are the other major benefits? What will it do for the user? Does it save time or money? Will it make life easier or better? Does it solve a problem? If so, what is that problem and how does it solve it? Comparison to other products: How does it compare to other products already on the market (or about to come on the market)? What will it give users that they can't get anywhere else? How is it different? Newer Better? Is it unique? An exclusive? Less expensive? A better buy? Do you provide better service? Do you have any related products? If so, how does this product tie in with those? Will you later sell those products to buyers of this product? Price: What is the price? Any extra costs such as shipping and handling? Any discounts? Any deluxe versions? Any alternatives? Any deadlines for receiving special offers? Payment methods: What options will you be offering for payments? Cash with order? Billing? Purchase order required? Credit cards? The offer: What is the offer? What do you want the recipient to respond to? Is this a special offer? A premium? An introductory offer? A prepublication discount? A limited-time offer? Free information? The package or promotion: Direct mail package consisting of what elements? Letter? Lift letter? Brochure? catalog? Self-mailer? Or is it a display ad? A newsletter? A postcard? An insert? An entire campaign? Enclose samples of previous promotions for this product or other products your company has sold. Which were winners? Losers? The objective of the promotion: To gain direct sales? Leads? Inquiries? Or is it to provide product information to customers? Gain an extra sale? Respond to inquiries? Announce new products? Build the company's or product's image? If so, what image should be conveyed? The audience: Who is the prime prospect? What are the characteristics of the target audience or audiences? If a business audience, what is the title and/or responsibility of the prospect? If a consumer, what are the interests, problems, concerns, demographics, and characteristics of the typical prospect? Are there any secondary audiences? If so, is it worth preparing separate versions of the promotion for them? The lists/media to be used: What lists or media will you be using? Be specific. Which have you used in the past? Which worked? Which did not? Tests: Will you be conducting any tests? If so, what points will be tested? Will tests affect the design of the package? The offer? The copy? Budget: What is the budget for this promotion? How much will be available for each part of the promotion? For lists? For the package? For other costs? Are there any restrictions? For example, no 4-color brochures or no flashy involvement devices. Schedule: When do you need the complete package? What are the approval dates? When will you be sending out the first test mailing or placing the first advertisement? Testimonials: Do you have any testimonials for the product? Celebrity endorsements? Reviews? Other media coverage? Enclose samples. Complaints: Have you ever had any complaints about this product or any similar products? Do you have any letters from unhappy customers? Any bad reviews or media coverage? Enclose samples. Must include the following: What points absolutely must be included in the copy? What benefits or features must be stressed? What design elements absolutely must be part of the package? Any points that absolutely must be avoided? Any words or phrases? Any designs? Any taboos? Anything that cannot be offered or promised? The guarantee: What is your guarantee? How strong is it? What are its limits? 30-day free trial period? 100% money-back guarantee? Return privileges? Inspection privileges? A warranty? How will orders come? Will you provide a BRE? Accept phone orders? Accept collect calls? Will you have a toll-free phone number? Will you use a 800 phone number? What percentage of your orders are now by phone? Will orders come any other way besides mail and phone? The company: What is the history of the company? Any special points? What about the personality of the owner? Any special expertise? Any points about the company or owners/managers that might have impact on sales? Anything else? Note any other information or points which could be useful to the copywriters and designers. Include any background material that you think might be helpful. Recommend additional reading material, if it is appropriate. Suggest other people they might talk to.
  • Also remember that it’s not a direct response ad unless it does incite immediate action. What Is the Package Supposed To Accomplish? Is it supposed to produce sales, leads, highly qualified leads, donations or encourage people to visit a store or dealership (traffic-building)? Each is a different type of direct marketing. If completed sales are the objective, the package must cover all the advantages of purchase, overcome the hesitations of the prospect and outline the terms of sale. If qualified leads are desired, the package need not give all details but must provide enough information to weed out "browsers." An open-ended, lead-building package might only touch on the key benefits of the product and not mention price. It might offer a highly attractive premium without specifying in detail that a sales person will deliver it. What are the economic realities? If the budget is limited, the writer needs to know this before developing a concept that calls for $10,000 worth of new photography. And even if the sky is the limit, the writer should always remember that more expensive packages have to pull appreciably more orders before breaking even. Costly devices or elements should only be used when a writer's instincts and experience say they are worthwhile.
  • All direct marketing has one additional common objective: To incite immediate action. This is accomplished with four key copy components which are frequently underlined through selection of package elements: Evoking a dream which the product or service will at least partly solve. The dream may be that the prospect will find love, friendship, wealth or happiness, etc. Or it might be fear of loss of one of these. Describing all benefits to be achieved by response (the "sales features"). Allaying suspicion by assuring the prospect of the company's reputation, providing the opportunity to examine the product, offering a guarantee, etc. Overcoming delay in response by generating a need for instant action with a premium, a time limit, a special price, etc.
  • More than in any other form of advertising, in direct response advertising, the copy is the defining and driving force, not the graphics. The graphics are there to support the copy. Defining the package involves coming up with the preliminary concept. Now, the writer begins to organize--what facts must be covered . . . in what order will they be presented . . . how much emphasis is to be given and where . . . what examples will illustrate the facts. The writer also "plays" with the package, writing fragments of ideas, paragraphs, letter openings and making sketches of the various elements. (One of the great direct mail writers once said a true direct mail writer starts by sketching and folding papers before turning to the typewriter, since the visual concept of where the exact words are going must precede specific words.) Next, the writer describes the theme of the package. He or she knows specifically what the package will say but not necessarily how it will be expressed. For instance, the writer may say, "The theme of this package is that business executives won't know as much as their peers without reading this magazine and this could make them look foolish in meetings and miss out on promotions." In addition, the writer now decides specifically what components are going into the package and what involvement devices and special formats will be used. Will a 6-page letter and no brochure sell better than a 2-page letter and a press sheet sized 4-color brochure? Must new photographs be taken for the brochure? Can a sheet of stamps aid the reader in answering questions or making selections? Will the brochure include a second order form (it usually lifts response but may not be practical, depending on the offer)? Writer and artist may have a brainstorming session to see if the writer's graphic ideas are workable and add the artist's concepts to finalizing the package specifications and involvement devices.
  • The 21 rules of direct response copy, used for writing a direct mail package, but to be followed in all other mediums as well. 1. Use short, "Hemingway-like" sentences as much as possible. 2. Avoid semi-colons-they slow the reader down. Dashes and elipses separate complex or long thoughts yet carry the reader onward. (Reading should be made as easy and rapid as possible.) 3. Keep copy in the active tense-complex tense structures make copy boring and hard to follow. 4. State the price and offer on all interior package elements unless they are being tested. (Even then, it is preferable to verticalize one side of the letter to get price in.) 5. If available, include testimonials. They are an unbeatable assurance. Names are better than initials; specific comments on specific aspects of the product are better than general praise; "results" are more powerful than opinions. 6. Specifics are always more effective than generalities. Concentrate on examples, titles, names, even quotes. Position product benefits as reader benefits-tell the reader what's in it for him. 7. Follow the "rule of three"- series of three has more rhythm and balance than two or four examples or adjectives. 8. Odd numbers (7 reasons why, 21 basic rules) are more effective than even numbers. 9. Always seek a rhythm in copy-it should "sing." Read your copy out loud or have someone read it to you to be sure it reads the way you hear it in your mind. 10. Whenever someone has to reread a sentence or ask for clarification, change the copy-it will bother a substantial portion of the audience as well. 11. Suit imagery and vocabulary to the market and the product. If you are selling a magazine, for instance, the copy should reflect the style of the magazine. 12. The headlines, subheads, boxes, photo captions and sunbursts in a brochure should be a full sales presentation for non-readers. 13. Underlines, indents and the use of second color in the letter should be used for pacing (to break up the copy) and to make all the key sales points stand out clearly to the prospect who only skims. 14. Never ask a reader a question in a key headline or on the outer envelope that can be answered, "No I don't want this" or "I don't care." 15. The letters in a package should be personal and look like letters . . . with typewriter type, a salutation and signature. Use "I" and "you“ (lots of "you's"). 16. The first paragraph of a letter should be no more than 1 or 2 lines, 3 at most, to make it easy to begin reading. 17. At least the first page of the letter should "break" to the next page in mid-sentence, preferably at a point which pulls the reader onward. For example, "The small child ran directly in front of the speeding car and . . .“ 18. Mention the product on page one of the letter, include price and offer if either is a key selling point. If the letter has a "story" opening, consider a "preface" above the salutation to state the offer. 19. A postscript is one of the most-read portions of a letter. Use it to reinforce the sales pitch and stress the incentive for immediate response. 20. In concluding the letter, return to the theme that began it. 21. The elements of a direct mail package do not all have to be "themed" together, but there should be a sense of continuity-a feeling that everything in the envelope was not collated from a random assortment. The idea presented on the outer envelope must be developed either in the letter or the brochure and this main theme is usually mentioned on the order form (which in addition to presenting full offer details and a contract of sale sells by highlighting the key incentive for response).
  • The 21 rules of direct response copy, used for writing a direct mail package, but to be followed in all other mediums as well. 1. Use short, "Hemingway-like" sentences as much as possible. 2. Avoid semi-colons-they slow the reader down. Dashes and elipses separate complex or long thoughts yet carry the reader onward. (Reading should be made as easy and rapid as possible.) 3. Keep copy in the active tense-complex tense structures make copy boring and hard to follow. 4. State the price and offer on all interior package elements unless they are being tested. (Even then, it is preferable to verticalize one side of the letter to get price in.) 5. If available, include testimonials. They are an unbeatable assurance. Names are better than initials; specific comments on specific aspects of the product are better than general praise; "results" are more powerful than opinions. 6. Specifics are always more effective than generalities. Concentrate on examples, titles, names, even quotes. Position product benefits as reader benefits-tell the reader what's in it for him. 7. Follow the "rule of three"- series of three has more rhythm and balance than two or four examples or adjectives. 8. Odd numbers (7 reasons why, 21 basic rules) are more effective than even numbers. 9. Always seek a rhythm in copy-it should "sing." Read your copy out loud or have someone read it to you to be sure it reads the way you hear it in your mind. 10. Whenever someone has to reread a sentence or ask for clarification, change the copy-it will bother a substantial portion of the audience as well. 11. Suit imagery and vocabulary to the market and the product. If you are selling a magazine, for instance, the copy should reflect the style of the magazine. 12. The headlines, subheads, boxes, photo captions and sunbursts in a brochure should be a full sales presentation for non-readers. 13. Underlines, indents and the use of second color in the letter should be used for pacing (to break up the copy) and to make all the key sales points stand out clearly to the prospect who only skims. 14. Never ask a reader a question in a key headline or on the outer envelope that can be answered, "No I don't want this" or "I don't care." 15. The letters in a package should be personal and look like letters . . . with typewriter type, a salutation and signature. Use "I" and "you“ (lots of "you's"). 16. The first paragraph of a letter should be no more than 1 or 2 lines, 3 at most, to make it easy to begin reading. 17. At least the first page of the letter should "break" to the next page in mid-sentence, preferably at a point which pulls the reader onward. For example, "The small child ran directly in front of the speeding car and . . .“ 18. Mention the product on page one of the letter, include price and offer if either is a key selling point. If the letter has a "story" opening, consider a "preface" above the salutation to state the offer. 19. A postscript is one of the most-read portions of a letter. Use it to reinforce the sales pitch and stress the incentive for immediate response. 20. In concluding the letter, return to the theme that began it. 21. The elements of a direct mail package do not all have to be "themed" together, but there should be a sense of continuity-a feeling that everything in the envelope was not collated from a random assortment. The idea presented on the outer envelope must be developed either in the letter or the brochure and this main theme is usually mentioned on the order form (which in addition to presenting full offer details and a contract of sale sells by highlighting the key incentive for response).
  • How direct mail letter copy is different from other forms of advertising. It's the personal orientation of direct mail which makes it unique and gives it properties that are different from other forms of advertising. The copywriter needs to capitalize on personal orientation as much as he can in developing a direct mail piece. The letter is the principal “from me to you” communication, think of it as writing a letter to a dear friend or loved one.
  • 1. Put yourself in the mental frame of writing to a single individual instead of a market. Preferably write to someone you know who would be interested in the proposition you have to sell. Then tell him all about it in a friendly and persuasive way. Someone once said, "Don't write to names, talk to a person." 2. Write the way you talk.. .almost. I say "almost" because conversation transcribed accurately usually turns out to be gobbledegook. A letter on the other hand should be good conversation, utilizing words and phrases - that you use naturally when you're sharp and enthusiastic and at your best. The more you can reflect your own style and personality, the better you'll preserve that personal quality of the communication. 3. Talk in terms of your reader's interests . . . His circumstances, his desires, his problems, rather than your own. "Don't talk to me about your grass seed, tell me about my lawn." In direct mail you can incorporate the "you attitude" with greater ease and less contrivance than it can be done with other forms of advertising. 4. Use idea "connectors." There is probably more of a tendency to read the whole message in a direct mail letter than there is in a print ad. In fact, the printed ad may be designed to catch the reader's eye in any one of a number of different places . . . grocery store and department store ads are an example. But a letter is a narrative unit that can capitalize on the compulsive habit (ingrained from grade school) of reading from beginning to end. Therefore, it needs to be well-connected from start to finish. It's important to bridge your ideas from one to another in as natural a way as possible. 5. Another rule for direct mail copy that probably doesn't apply other places is to avoid "buckshot." This is the presentation of too many propositions, too many alternatives, too many different products. Display advertising can often make good use of a multiplicity of prices, offers and products; but the direct mail letter is best .confined to one central theme, focused on one product or service. If there are alternatives to be introduced keep them simple, something in the nature of an either or choice. One way to handle this matter of several alternatives, if that's essential to the sales strategy, is to write your whole letter on the main or easiest choice for your prospect and relegate alternatives to the order card. Keeping in mind the personal quality of the - medium is the essential strategy for writing direct mail copy. One of the best rules for addressing a blank piece of paper, to achieve that good, personal-sounding letter, is to try to answer the question that will be in the reader's mind when he - receives it: "Why am I getting this letter, at this time, on this subject." If you can answer that question immediately and personally, and tie it into the benefits the prospect will receive by responding, you are about 75% along the way to writing a good selling letter. An extra hint: A frequent lament of copywriters is the difficulty of getting started. Here's a solution: start by putting yourself into the mind of your prospect and then write answers to that question above. What emerges may not be final copy but at least it will get words down on paper, going in the right direction, which lend themselves to self-editing . . .the ultimate writing art.
  • Not all direct mail packages have a separate letter, brochure and response device. Some only include a letter and response device. Others are self mailers and all the components of the basic package are in the self mailer.
  • The classic sequence of letter copy is to begin by evoking the dream, transition to the product, explain specifically what there is about the product or service that will make the dream come true and conclude with a statement of the offer incorporating a reason for immediate response (if only to start making the dream come true right away).
  • Keep it simple stupid. Make it easy to read and understand. Stick with words of five letters or less, per Dr. Flesch “The Art of Plain Talk…” his “reading ease” formula. For every 100 words you write, make sure 75% of them are five letters or less. Shorten your sentences. Avoid clichés that are over used, old and or stodgy. Think is a straight line to make your to make your phrasing fresh and friendly. Use similes and metaphors to create picture-building images.
  • Preparation before writing a word of copy is key. You should develop a bunch of notes that touch each of these areas before you write the 1 st word.
  • Visualize the prospect asking these questions. Your copy needs to answer these questions in the opening paragraph. What’s the benefit? This is the Jack Lacy Sales Training Formula.
  • Bob Stone’s formula for writing winning letters. Use or understand all the formulas when writing copy: A-I-D-A attention, interest, desire, action P-P-P-P picture, promise, prove, push
  • Used by some writers instead of the formula approach. Example: Problem: will a professional direct marketer accept the word of a college administrator over a professional colleague? Strategic solution: write the letter on his personal letterhead and use the salutation “Dear Colleague.”
  • Try to personalize the letter with the prospect's name but do not do this if you are not sure what it is! Promise a benefit in the headline and make it the most important one. Immediately enlarge upon the key benefit and build up interest fast. Tell the reader specifically what they are going to get. Do NOT assume that they know your product. Explain the benefits in depth and back up the benefits with appropriate features.
  • The brochure shows the product or service, visually demonstrates the dream, reinforces the essential reasons for response by restating them in a different way and offers additional information. Graphics enhance copy, never overpower. The brochure is the place to describe all the technical details of a product-by using, for instance, callouts from a large picture (often less confusing than simply writing about everything). A brochure can 'become much more emotionally involving by, visually showing the advantages bf response (along with captions). It can illustrate the various uses to which the product is applied. Many different points can be covered in a brochure by the use of panels, boxes, captions, etc. This means that subsidiary features and benefits that interrupted the smooth flow of the letter can be covered here. At the same time, both the brochure and the letter should lead the reader separately to the order form or response vehicle. Only in rare instances should the letter direct the reader to the brochure (in insurance sales, for instance, rate charts and the legal terms of the policy are better covered in a folder or brochure since the complexity can totally halt the reader's movement from reason for buying to purchase decision when included in a letter).
  • Don’t worry about duplication, in direct mail, every piece must stand alone. For an intangible offer such as a mortgage, you can dramatize the comforts of owning your own home.
  • Try to fill it out yourself to check it is well designed for data capture. On the device, you should also explain the uses to which you will put the information that you are requesting.
  • The postscript can take one of these forms: A restatement of your offer introduced perhaps by "Remember" and capsulizing what your offer is about. b) Emphasis on the money-back guarantee. c) Direction to another element of your mailing -"P. S. As you look at the order form, you'll notice . . . " d) Testimonial, using one or more to lend credibility to what you have said. In some cases, testimonials do have a place as the P. S., but usually there is something better to use.
  • Some common guidelines for editing your own direct mail / direct response copy. Edit for warm ups – they take the power from a letter. Get right to the point. You’ll lose the reader. If they can say “I know that already or so what,” you’re in big trouble. Stopper’s are anything that stops the reader in the act of reading, like words they don’t know or metaphors they don’t understand. Edit for author’s pride. You’re creating a selling letter, not a literary masterpiece. If your reader stops to admire your work, you’re dead. Edit for flow. Make sure everything flows in a logical and well connected order. Edit for “reason why.” Make sure advantages you attribute to the product don’t just sit there in mid-air, supported only by the fact that they appear on paper. Edit to stretch benefits. This is another way to help your copy get away from unsupported puffery. Don’t be satisfied with just listing features. Bob Stone: advantages belong to he product…benefits belong to the consumer. Describe the product advantages and what they do for the consumer. Edit for market. Make sure you are writing to your audience. A letter written to the NASCAR crowd and mailed to Harvard Business Review audience will fail miserably.
  • A letter should be easy to read. The reader needs to be guided through the text smoothly. Some techniques that can help with this are as follows but do not use them all at once!
  • The brochure has been called the glamour piece of the direct mail package; and the term is not without merit. The brochure can go a long way in accomplishing the second step in the sales process—the positive involvement of the recipient with the product being sold. The designer should consider these questions:
  • Is there a big idea behind your brochure? Do your headlines stick to the key offer? Is your product dramatized to its best advantage by the format? Do you show examples of your product in use? Does the entire presentation tell the complete story and follow a logical sequence?
  • Make it look valuable, include certificate borders, safety paper backgrounds, simulated rubber stmaps, eagles, blue handwriting, seals, serial numbers, receipt stubs, etc. Include involvement devices, tokens, stamps, scratch offs, etc. Don’t call it an order form, call it a Reservation, Invitation, free-gift check, trial membership application
  • Ask these questions to evaluate the potential effectiveness of the package design:
  • Design means not only look but also how much tactile involvement.
  • Wide range of choices depending on the package and the offer and what you’re trying to accomplish
  • The headline can cover a single item, a group of items, or the heading of a page or spread. You must be careful when using the value headline, there are strict government regulations on the use of misleading headlines.
  • Customer information includes: size, color, etc. Catalog copy uses the inverted style of writing proceeding from the most important news down to the least important news. There are situations where the inverted style will not be useable; primarily where copy space is very short. When there isn’t enough space, just concentrate on the major benefit or benefits. The theory holds true in catalog writing. In your copy, first state, briefly and concisely, the most important benefit to be obtained by buying the item. Then, quickly run through the secondary benefits. Now, complete your selling job by listing the selling points which support your benefits. Complete your copy with the necessary customer information (size, color, etc.
  • If you want to create broadcast commercials guaranteed to sell your product or service-even sight unseen-in a matter of minutes, here are three simple tips to help you succeed: First, re-read that sentence above. Like the opening of a sales letter, or the headline of a direct response ad, it is structured to attract the attention of logical prospects. It promises benefits, offers help and lures the prospect into reading more. Its purpose in this context is to illustrate-and emphasize-the point that the basics of effective broadcast copy are precisely the same as those of all good direct response copy. Second, recognize the implication of the . . stringent time limits imposed by radio and television. Commercial time is available in multiples of ten seconds and thirty seconds: 10, 20, 30, 60, 90 to a maximum of 120 seconds. One minute is an average length. That translates to no more than two hundred words. Two hundred words in which you must first capture the attention and interest of a radio listener who is probably not really listening as he or she dresses, drives, or tries to fall asleep . . . or a TV viewer who can hardly wait for the commercial break so he can go to the bathroom. Less than two hundred words in which to explain your product. . . extol your product. . .inspire an active desire to buy . . . explain how to go about buying. . . and propel the potential buyer into taking immediate action. You have just finished reading two hundred words. Think of what you can say-what you indeed must say-in two hundred words compared to the thousands upon thousands of words that can be lavished on a direct mail package. Third, remember that a listener who is attracted by your sales proposition must get the details of your offer, as well as the details of the required buying action literally in a matter of seconds. Other than a phone number or P. 0. box number jotted down on a scrap of paper, your - prospect has no written record to which to refer later.
  • Almost all spots are two minutes long. Nothing is vague or ambiguous. A great deal of information is packed into 120 seconds and the announcer tends to speak quickly and with urgency to make you act now. If the product can be shown, it is shown clearly and frequently and in use if appropriate. Special product features will be shown in close-ups as they are described. Legal statements are super imposed with mentioning.
  • The primary reason resides in the fact that the direct response print ad is a very special breed of advertising, with its own set of right and wrong approaches. This fact has been ignored by too many advertisers for far too long. Indeed, the feeling has always been that non-direct response broadcast and print are really the only true forms of advertising; that direct response advertising is just a hybrid, a poor relation; that if you can create a good, solid, creative ad for cars, deodorants or peanut butter, you can do a direct response ad with one hand tied behind your back. Nothing could be further from the truth or more dangerous when it comes to committing a chunk of your ad budget to direct response print. Unless you understand the unique rules of direct response print and until you can get those visions of Volkswagen ads [David Ogilvy’s famous direct response ROP ads] out of your head, you'll never come close to reaping the full benefit from this truly exciting medium.
  • For example, Good Housekeeping readers are avid coupon clippers; National Geographic readers traditionally are not. How can you determine in advance which publications are best for coupon response? There's no foolproof way, of course, but you can begin by asking your peers what their experiences have been. You can take a look at the publication, itself, to see how many coupon ads it carries and--this is important--how many are repeated in subsequent issues. And you can make your own judgment as to how "coffee-table" the publication is; i.e., is it slick, likely to be saved and displayed, unlikely to be mutilated, or coupon-clipped, by its owner.
  • Hot words: Now, New, You, At Last, Free, Save, Bargain, Today, Last Chance, Limited Time Only
  • Making contact with the reader – You don’t have the space in a one-to-one letter, but you are still aiming for immediate action—at the heart strings or purse strings—and that requires faith, trust, and a carefully-nurtured rapport.
  • The intent is to convey to the reader they are looking at a real bargain.
  • Depending on the offer, coupons increase response. The question of whether or not to use one should be tested. As should including both an 800 number and a coupon. 800 numbers are expensive and customers can and do misuse them. The prospects address is important but little thought is given to leaving space on the coupon for the prospects address. Bad addresses mean bad responses. The moral: make those fill-in spaces as wide and high - And make it a four-line a fill in: (1) name (2) address (3) city (4) state and zip code. One of the greatest frustrations for a respondent is trying to jam city, state and zip on one line. If you live in Ames, Iowa, no problem. Mechanicsville is something else. And remember, if the respondent doesn't think you can read it, he isn't going to mail it. And while we're on the subject, how many orders get bollixed because you (or your cage) couldn't understand the customer's handwriting? An ounce of prevention-remembering to include "please print 7' on your coupon-is worth tons of undeliverables. Check these points out, too. Have you restated your offer in the coupon? You should, especially if it's a money-off; when the prospect is at the coupon, at the point of the sale/no-sale decision, he needs all the psychological justification you can give him. Same thing goes for a money-back guarantee, if you have one. Use it in the coupon . . . it helps him decide to say "yes." And here's something so often overlooked, it's criminal. While the body of the ad carefully includes the mailing address, the coupon leaves it out! But, you say, the prospect already has the address . . . why take up space in the coupon to repeat it? To which the reply would be: What happens when the coupon is tom from the magazine for later use, and the magazine put away or discarded? Whence then the address? And the order? And now, the cardinal rule for coupons: they belong on the lower right-hand comer of a right hand page. Period. That's where they work the best. In fact, your insertion order should prominently display this instruction: "Right hand page or omit." Now, there are publications that will not accept an insertion order with this wording on it. Cross them off your schedule. No ad at all is better than an ad that appears on a left-hand page with your coupon nestled in the magazine's gutter! People do not tear out gutter coupons. It's messy, inconvenient and against nature. If, for some reason, you absolutely, positively must run in a publication that will not guarantee a right-hand page, do one of two things. Give them two versions of the ad, one with a right-hand coupon for a right-hand page; the other with a left hand coupon for a left-hand page. Or, lay out your ad so that the coupon centers on the bottom of the page. These are less than happy alternatives, but worth it if it keeps your coupon out of the gutter.
  • Prepaid postage will certainly increase response, but making them include the stamp may mean better qualified responses, if it’s a lead generation ad. Another point, pre-paid postage will certainly increase response; however, you're going to pay handsomely for it. Whether the results net more profitably than a "place stamp here" box, after what is sure to be an increase in "bad pays", is something that can only be determined by testing. Incidentally, when using a "place stamp here“ box, some advertisers feel it is a plus to indicate the exact postage necessary for the card-thereby eliminating confusion and hesitation on the respondent's part; confusion and hesitation being anathema to "yes" decisions. In addition, some advertisers believe if you are going to do so, you should indicate the regular letter rate, instead of the lower postcard rate, since most households don't have the lower denominations readily available and might be loathe to waste extra postage. And finally, some feel that ignoring the amount totally pays off best. When you have exhausted all other areas of testing, it might be something you'd want to look into. One more word if you are using prepaid cards: There are now very definite regulations that dictate the exact wording, spacing, design, etc. on the permit side of the card. In addition, your card must feature an FIM-Facing Identification Mark.
  • Generally the same rules apply as for any direct response advertising, with some modification. Think of a banner ad as teaser copy for a website. Banner ads should be tested and tested a lot. They burn out faster.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Direct Marketing 101 Workshop 5 Direct Marketing Creative Media, Formats, Design & Copy (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 2. Creative Overview (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 3. 3 Parts of Response Creativity
      • The offer
        • To which the prospect or customer is being invited to respond.
      • The market
        • Being communicated with.
      • The creative treatment
        • Of the offer and product or service.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 4. Presentation Matters a Lot
      • What’s the objective of the advertisement?
        • Lead generation or direct selling?
      • Presentation of the offer and details are depend on the objective.
      • The two objectives require different presentation approaches.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 5. Lead Generation
      • In lead “gen” the objective is to avoid telling the whole story.
      • You want to arouse attention, get interest, tell them why they should act, and ask for immediate action.
      • Tactically, this involves saying “see how…find out how…”
      • The salesman does the closing.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 6. Direct Selling
      • In direct selling, the objective is to get the actual order.
      • The strategy is to tell as much as possible, answer all questions and objections so the prospect can make the buying decision immediately.
      • No salesman is involved…just order takers.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 7. The Creative Brief
      • The client needs to understand DR advertising so they can give the agency all of the right information needed to produce the ad.
      • Or, the agency has to know all of the right questions to ask to get the information they need to produce the ad.
      • Thus the all important creative brief or advertising fact sheet.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 8. Key Elements of a Creative Brief
      • Description of product
      • Purpose of product
      • Product features
      • Main product benefits
      • Comparisons to other products
      • Price
      • Payment methods
      • The offer
      • The package or promotion
      • Objective of the promotion
      • The audience
      • The lists/media to be used
      • Tests to be conducted
      • Budget
      • Schedule
      • Testimonials
      • Any customer complaints
      • Must includes
      • Any taboos
      • The guarantee
      • How will the order come
      • The company
      • Anything else
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 9. Keys to Successful DR Creative
      • The COPY is in keeping with audience / offer.
      • The FORMAT is consistent with the offer.
      • The DESIGN / GRAPHICS are consistent with the offer.
      • The RESPONSE DEVICE restates the offer.
      • It gets the prospect to ACT IMMEDIATELY.
      • It tells them WHAT TO DO.
      • It tells them HOW TO DO IT.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 10. Concept Evaluation
      • Does the concept meet the definition of the purpose?
      • Does it mesh with your other advertising?
      • If it breaks from your traditional advertising, is the break justifiable?
      • Does the concept offer a benefit, a promise, stress the value, have a reason for the customer to act now?
      • Does it stay within the mail-order tradition, at least in the broadest sense?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 11. Direct Response Copywriting (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 12. Direct Response Copy
      • The copy development process starts with these considerations:
        • Who is the target audience?
        • What are you trying to accomplish?
        • What are the economic realities?
      • All direct response copy has one common objective:
        • To incite immediate action
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 13. 4 Key Copy Components
      • Evokes a dream
      • Describes all benefits
      • Allays the prospects suspicions
      • Generates a need for instant action.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 14. Copy Development Process
      • Conduct research
        • Become an expert on the product
        • Learn what’s already being done
        • Develop ideas from other’s work
      • Define the package
        • The preliminary concept
      • Write the copy
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 15. Copy Guidelines
      • Know the product, all the selling features and benefits.
      • Know the market.
      • Talk to the prospect in their language.
      • Make a promise, then prove that you can deliver on it.
      • Get to the point right away.
      • Make the copy germane to the selling proposition.
      • Make the copy concise.
      • Make the copy logical and clear.
      • Make the copy enthusiastic about what you’re selling.
      • Make the copy complete, answer all the questions.
      • Make sure the copy sells.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 16. 21 Copy Rules (1 – 11)
      • Use short sentences.
      • Avoid semi-colons.
      • Use active tense.
      • State price and offer on all components.
      • Use testimonials.
      • Use specifics.
      • Use rule of “threes.”
      • Use odd numbers.
      • Always seek a rhythm in copy.
      • Be clear to avoid reread.
      • Suit imagery and vocabulary to market and product.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 17. 21 Copy Rules (12 – 21)
      • Scanning elements should be a full sales presentation.
      • Use underlines, indents, colors to make key points stand out.
      • Never ask a question in a key headline or on the outer envelop.
      • Keep the 1 st paragraph to 1 or 2 lines, 3 at most.
      • Letter copy should be personal.
      • Break sentences over pages.
      • Mention product and offer on 1 st page of letter.
      • Use postscripts, they are read.
      • Close with the beginning theme.
      • Maintain continuity through the entire package.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 18. Direct Mail Creative (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 19. How Direct Mail is Different
      • It’s personal.
      • It’s the original 1-to-1 marketing tool.
      • You need to capitalize on the personal aspect.
      • Think of it as a letter to mom.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 20. Function of DM Package
      • The direct mail package is a salesman.
      • It must be noticed.
      • It must be interesting and inviting.
      • It must make the reader feel a certain degree of positive involvement with the product.
      • It must be designed in such a way that it will be easy and convenient for the reader to follow through on their decision to buy or respond.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 21. How to Achieve That Personal Quality
      • Write to an individual not a market.
      • Write in a conversational form.
      • Put yourself in the mind of the reader.
      • Talk about your reader’s interests, needs, desires, problems, not yours.
      • Use idea “connectors.”
      • Avoid too many propositions.
      • Answer the question, “why am I getting this letter?”
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 22. Types of Direct Mail Packages
      • Solo Mailings – Classic letter package
      • Self Mailers
      • Catalogs
      • Card Decks
      • Post Cards
      • Package inserts / statement stuffers
      • Newsletters
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 23. Classic Letter Package
      • What does it include?
        • A letter
        • A brochure
        • A reply device
      • Other inserts may include
        • Second letter (lift letter or publisher’s letter)
        • Buck slip
        • Versioned inserts
        • Selection aids
        • Testimonial flyers
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 24. What Goes Into The Letter
      • It covers all of the primary reasons for buying.
        • Packages with letters out pull those without.
      • The letter is the primary sales presentation.
        • It should be long enough to say what must be said to provoke a reaction.
        • Every single word and phrase must be meaningful.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 25. Letter Copy Fundamentals
      • Create a copy checklist to establish your ground rules.
      • Get in step with readers/listeners right away – don’t beat around the bush.
      • Your opening paragraph/statement should promise the reader/listener a benefit.
      • Thoughts should be arranged in logical order.
      • What you are saying should be clear and easy to read.
      • What you are saying should be easily understood.
      • Phrasing should be fresh and friendly.
      • Copy should be correct and well-formed.
      • Ask for action in your close.
      • Include a postscript.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 26. Your Copy Checklist – What your notes should it include?
      • Appeals
      • Benefits
      • Selling points
      • Market facts
      • Offers
      • Free gifts
      • Possible lead ideas
      • Testimonials
      • Guarantees
      • Problems to overcome
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 27. Answer The Prospect’s Questions
      • What will you do for me if I listen to your story?
      • How are you going to do this?
      • Who is responsible for the promises you make?
      • Who else have you done this for?
      • What will it cost?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 28. 7 Step Formula to Writing Letters
      • Promise a benefit in your lead or first paragraph.
      • Immediately enlarge on your most important benefit.
      • Tell the reader what they are going to get.
      • Back your statements with proofs and endorsements.
      • Tell the reader what they might lose if they don’t act.
      • Rephrase prominent benefits in the closing offer.
      • Incite action. Now.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 29. Problem Solving Approach
      • Problems ÷ Strategies = Solutions
      • Review the problems to be faced, then come up with a strategic solution to solve each problem.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 30. The “rules of rhetoric”
      • Don’t use too many participles.
      • Don’t use too many prepositional phrases.
      • Don’t use too many “That’s.”
      • Don’t end too many sentences with a preposition.
      • Don’t use your company name too many times.
      • Use Verbs instead of nouns. Verbs are action words.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 31. Letter Writing Fundamentals - 1
      • Try to personalize the letter with the prospect's name.
      • Promise a benefit in the headline and make it the most important one.
      • Immediately enlarge upon the key benefit and build up interest fast.
      • Tell the reader specifically what they are going to get.
      • Do NOT assume that they know your product.
      • Supply credible endorsements to back up your claims.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 32. Letter Writing Fundamentals - 2
      • Tell the reader what they might lose if they fail to act. Overcome inertia!
      • Point them very clearly at the reply devices.
      • Write rather as you speak - as one human being to another. Avoid jargon.
      • Shorter sentences and paragraphs are easier to read than longer ones.
      • Build your argument by anticipating objections and winning confidence.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 33. The Brochure
      • Not all products / services being offered require a brochure.
      • A brochure is used when you need…
        • To visually demonstrate the dream.
        • To reinforce the essential reasons for response by restating them in a different way.
        • To offer additional information – technical details, etc.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 34. What Goes Into a Brochure
      • List every selling point listed in your general copy platform.
      • Use opening page to make the basic appeal and dramatize the offer.
      • Use spread (broad-side) area for the most impressive illustration.
      • If the mailing is benefit-oriented, show the benefit.
      • Consider making the brochure an element of apparent value – a keeper.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 35. Brochure Checklist
      • Is the brochure designed for the market you’re trying to reach?
      • Is the presentation appropriate for the product and offer?
      • Is the design consistent with the other mailer components?
      • Is there a big idea behind the brochure?
      • Do the headlines stick to the key offer?
      • Is the product dramatized to its best advantage?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 36. Brochure Checklist (cont’d)
      • Does it show the product in use?
      • Does it follow a logical sequence?
      • Does it tell the complete story?
        • Price, offer, guarantee, etc.
      • Can it be cut from regular size paper?
      • Is the paper quality in keeping with the presentation?
      • Is color used to show the product in its best light?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 37. The Reply Device
      • Offer a combination of response options. (Mail, fax, telephone, E-mail)
      • Do not use glossy card that is hard to write on.
      • Do not use a dark background color.
      • Ask for extra information to enhance your database.
      • Make sure that you offer an "opt out box", for those who do not wish to receive further direct mail.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 38. Postscript Fundamental Forms
      • A restatement of your offer
      • Emphasis on money back guarantee
      • Direction to another element of your mailing
      • Testimonial to lend credibility to what you have said.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 39. Editing That Masterpiece
      • Edit for “warm-ups” or “so-what’s.”
      • Edit for “stoppers.”
      • Edit for “author’s pride.”
      • Edit for order.
      • Edit for “reason why.”
      • Edit to stretch benefits.
      • Edit for market.
      • Edit for negative ideas / expressions.
      • Edit for too many I’s, we’s, us’s, our’s, its.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 40. Package Design (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 41. Letter Design
      • Indent paragraphs and vary paragraph widths.
      • Underline benefits.
      • Use sub-headings to break up the page.
      • Use a PS to restate offer or benefits.
      • Use a Johnson Box.
      • Use different color ink to call out points.
      • Use Serif fonts, they’re easier to read.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 42. Brochure Design – Appearance
      • Design the brochure for the market you are trying to reach.
      • Suit the presentation to the product or service you are offering.
      • The brochure must be consistent with the rest of the mailing package.
      • It should be large enough to sell the product.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 43. Brochure Design - Appearance
      • The use of color must work in all instances.
      • The folds need to work both functionally and decoratively.
      • The quality of the artwork should be appropriate for the piece.
      • The type selections should be appropriate.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 44. Brochure Design - Content
      • One big IDEA behind your brochure.
      • Headlines stick to the key offer.
      • Product dramatized to its best advantage by the format.
      • Show examples of product in use.
      • Entire presentation tells the complete story and follows a logical sequence.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 45. Brochure Design - Preparation
      • Can the brochure be cut from standard-size paper stock?
      • Is the quality of the paper in keeping with the presentation?
      • Is color employed judiciously to show the product in its best light?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 46. Order / Reply Form Design
      • Does the form induce readership?
      • Does it push the reader to take action?
      • Does it have plenty of room for the respondent to fill in the requested information?
      • Does the form look to valuable to throw away?
      • Do you call it something other than an order form?
      • Does it have personal involvement devices?
      • Do you restate the offer and benefits?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 47. Outside Envelope Design
      • It’s the opening statement for any direct mail package.
      • There are several points to consider in it’s development
        • Size, Stock, Die Cuts
        • Type, Colors
        • Artwork: Photos, Illustrations, Show Throughs
        • Scratch & Sniff, tokens, peel-offs
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 48. The Total Graphics Picture
      • Will it segregate itself from other mail in the mailbox?
      • Does it have the necessary initial impact to make the recipient want to open it?
      • Does it give away too much up front?
      • Does the letter invite the recipient to read on once the package is opened?
      • Are the pieces deigned as a whole—relate both physically and graphically to one another?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 49. The Total Picture (cont’d)
      • Is the reader involved enough in the response vehicle? Is he invited to act?
      • Has the product been “glorified” enough to warrant the reader’s buying it?
      • Has the designer found the most cost-effective and economical means of producing the package without taking away from the product merits or graphic philosophy?
      • Is it easy for the reader to respond and/or order without confusion or inconvenience?
      • Does the package deal honestly with the recipient with regard to both the product and his wants and needs?
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 50. Mailing Package Guidelines & Checklist (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 51. Mailing Format
      • The letter ranks first in importance.
      • The most effective mailing package consists of an outer envelope, letter, brochure, response form, and business reply envelope.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 52. Letter
      • Form letters using indented paragraphs usually out pull those in which paragraphs are not indented.
      • Underlining important phrases and sentences increases results slightly.
      • A letter with a separate brochure generally does better than a combination letter brochure.
      • A form letter with an effective headline ordinarily does as well.
      • Authentic testimonials is a sales letter ordinarily increase the pull.
      • A two page letter will out pull a one page letter.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 53. Brochure
      • A brochure that deals specifically with the proposition presented in the letter is more effective than a brochure of an institutional character.
      • A combination of art and photography usually produces a better brochure than one employing either art or photography alone.
      • A brochure usually proves to be ineffective in selling magazines and news stories.
      • In selling big ticket products, deluxe large size, color brochures virtually always warrant the extra cost over 11 x 17 or smaller brochures.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 54. Outside Envelope
      • Illustrated envelopes increase response if their message is tied into the offer.
      • Variety in types and sizes of envelopes pays, especially in a series of mailings.
      • Try to imply some reward from simply opening the envelope.
      • Don't reveal the total sum and substance of your offer.
      • Don't hesitate to employ the good headline words like "new," "now," "how," "special,“ "guaranteed"' . . . and if there's anything free in connection with your offer, don't keep it a secret.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 55. Reply Form
      • Reply cards with receipt stubs increase response over cards with no stubs.
      • Busy order or request forms that look important usually produce a larger response than neat, clean looking forms.
      • Postage free business reply cards generally bring more responses than those to which the respondent must affix postage.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 56. Reply Envelope
      • A reply envelope increase cash with response.
      • A reply envelope increase responses to collection letters.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 57. Color Use
      • Two color letters usually out pull one color letters.
      • An order or reply form printed in colored ink or colored stock usually out pulls one printed in black or white stock.
      • A 2-color brochure generally out pulls a 1-color.
      • Full color is warranted in the promotion of such food products, apparel, furniture, and other merchandise if the quality of color reproduction is good.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 58. Postage
      • Third-class mail ordinarily pulls as well as first-class.
      • Postage-metered envelopes usually pull better than affixing postage stamps
      • A “designed” printed permit on the envelop usually does as well as postage metered mail.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 59. Evaluating the Package
      • Copy
      • Design
      • Topography
      • Scan-ability
      • Offer / call to action
      • Clarity
      • Logic
      • Involvement
      • Honesty / integrity / believability
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 60. How to Improve a Good Mailing Package
      • Try a new approach – a negative appeal if you’re using a positive one.
      • Change the type of lead on your letter.
      • Add things to your mailing package.
      • Take out things from your mailing package.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 61. Self Mailers
      • Easier and quicker to produce.
      • Lower production and labor costs.
      • Lower mailing cost.
      • Lower response rates.
      • Good for education and seminars.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 62. B-to-B Direct Mail Response Devices
      • Involvement techniques: tokens and address labels
      • Qualified leads techniques
      • Temporary membership card technique
      • Telemarketing response technique
      • Postage-paid BRC and envelopes
      • Letters with built-in BRC’s
      • Self-mailers with built-in BRC’s
      • Return the letter technique
      • The mailing label technique
      • The stamp technique
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 63. Catalog Creative (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 64. Catalog Copy Characteristics
      • Above all else, catalog copy must SELL.
      • It must be brief and concise.
      • It must be complete, with every question answered.
      • It must be absolutely clear.
      • Catalog copy is the most disciplined copy.
        • Headline and catalog copy all have rules to follow.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 65. Catalog – The Headline
      • With catalog copy, you generally start by writing the headline first.
      • There are three types of headlines:
        • The label headline
        • The benefit headline
        • The sale headline
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 66. Catalog Copy
      • Catalog copy is written in the “inverted pyramid style.”
        • State briefly and concisely the most important benefit to be obtained by buying the item.
        • Then the secondary benefits
        • Then list the selling points which support your benefits.
        • Then include the necessary customer information.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 67. Other Catalog Copy To Do’s
      • General copy
        • When items share the same basic features, don’t repeat the copy
      • Cross-selling – don’t overlook it
      • Copy editing
        • Every word should be a working word
        • Every word should help the selling story
        • Drop articles when possible.
        • Avoid using the perfect tenses.
        • Use abbreviations only when they are clear.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 68. Broadcast Creative (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 69. Direct Response Broadcast
      • The basics of effective broadcast copy are exactly the same as those of all good direct response copy.
      • Stringent time limitations impose the rule of “clarity.” 200 hundred words in 60 seconds.
      • The listener/viewer must get the details of your offer and required buying action in literally seconds.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 70. The Rule of Clarity
      • "Clarity" means a full, honest description of your product or service, a clearly stated offer . . . Clearly stated obligations, limitation or disclaimers . . . And clearly and repeatedly stated action and/or ordering instructions.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 71. Radio
      • Methods of production
        • Personality Ad-Lib, Announcer-Read copy, and Studio-Produced tapes
      • Copy
        • Your opener must be attention grabbing
        • Followed by the benefits
        • Followed by information about the product
        • The end should be devoted entirely to calls to respond and to specific details of the offer and response mechanism.
        • Depending on the product offer, a bonus can be offered for prompt response or cash with order.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 72. DR Television
      • Far less flexible and more expensive than radio
      • Basics are the same as radio
        • The prospect must be “hooked” in the first few seconds.
        • The offer and response method must still be spelled out repeatedly and clearly.
      • The obvious advantage of TV is visualization.
        • The visual image must be conceived as an integral part of the total message.
        • They must carry a message of their own and enrich and enlarge on the spoken word.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 73. What Makes a Brand Commercial?
      • A brand spot is emotionally driven.
      • The best ones take you by surprise, charm you, and leave you with an emotion about the brand.
      • Essentially, they treat you as a viewer, and reward you for their interruption by a moment’s entertainment.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 74. What Makes a DR Commercial?
      • A direct response spot is emotionally driven in a more rational way.
      • Nothing is vague or ambiguous.
      • Its number one purpose is to convert you from viewer to “actor,” if you will, in 30, 60, or 120 seconds, usually by giving you lots of reasons to consider.
      • The product is shown frequently and in use if possible.
      • A direct response spot does not have the luxury of months to create preference. It must get into your head and make you act immediately.
      • If it doesn’t perform, it will be yanked immediately.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 75. Tips for Creating DRTV
      • Make it obvious who your spot is talking to.
      • A storytelling structure usually works best.
      • Have a big idea at the heart of your spot.
      • Use urgency, but don’t short-change persuasion.
      • Remember, you can’t tell everything, copy time is very limited.
      • Make sure the visuals are interesting and support and reinforce the offer.
      • Bring in the ordering method when they have been prepared for.
      • Give the sense that there is more to find out about by acting now.
      • Always come from the truth, the pitch has to be believable.
      • It helps to have an offer.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 76. Direct Response Print Advertising Creative (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 77. Direct Response Print Ads
      • Why do so many direct response print ads fail?
      • Why do so many publishers and merchandise people take a stab, and a loss, and swear off the medium for good?
        • The benefit headline
        • The sale (or value) headline
      • Try to avoid being trapped into the item name headline.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 78. DR Ads – Step by Step
      • Media Selection
      • The headline
      • The copy
      • The graphics
      • The coupon
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 79. Media Selection
      • Generally same process and criteria as general advertising
        • Define your target market
        • Select the publications that reach them in the greatest numbers at the lowest cost per thousand
      • Things that differ
        • Some publications have better coupon / response readership than others.
        • Space trades
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 80. The Headline
      • Shorter is better
        • Headlines of less than nine words seem to work better.
      • Direct response headlines must spur action
        • Offer a promise, a pledge, or a benefit
        • Use “hot” words that have been getting people to respond for ages.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 81. The Copy
      • Views differ on length – short or long copy
        • Say as much as you have to
        • Say it in an interesting and compelling way
        • Ask for the order
      • If you’re using long copy, try using bold faced captions every few paragraphs
      • The ad must try to make real contact with the reader – you want action
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 82. The Graphics
      • Considering the medium, graphics are more critical in print ad than they are in mail.
        • They should match the medium (publication) being used.
      • Classy vs. klutzy
        • Consider the prospects perception of your proposition.
        • Klutzy – when your trying to impart a special deal or value
        • Classy – when you trying to impart an aura of prestige, status, class
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 83. Klutzy – Not Sloppy
      • Informal layout
      • Heavy use of spot illustrations
      • Aggressive use of headlines and captions
      • Use of exclamation points and arrows
      • Use of bursts
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 84. Classy -
      • Clean and somewhat sophisticated layout
      • Typeface should match character of ad
      • Photographic representations of the product should be sharp, clear and professional.
      • Avoid reverse copy ads – readership nose dives – they are hard to read.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 85. The Coupon
      • Include one, they increase response.
      • Make them easy to fill out.
      • Make it a four line fill out for name, address, city, state and zip code
      • Include the message, “Please Print.”
      • Restate your offer.
      • Include the mailing address on the coupon.
      • The cardinal rule of coupons – they belong on the lower right-hand corner of a right-hand page.
      • Avoid “cutesy” coupons.
      • Use rectangle shape in the lower right corner of the ad with two easy straight lines tears for removal.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 86. The Bind-In Card
      • All of the rules for creating good coupons apply to bind in cards.
      • Bind-in cards increase response.
      • The card must conform to postal regulations.
      • Typography and layout should be similar to ad’s
      • Prepaid postage will certainly increase response.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 87. Internet Advertising & Email Creative (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 88. Banner Ads
      • Keep it simple.
      • Show people.
      • Use clear qualifying language.
      • Use a strong call to action.
      • Create a sense of urgency.
      • Use words, like “click-here.”
      • Use color carefully.
      • Use movement.
      • Use high production values.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 89. Some email rules
      • Write a compelling subject line
      • Re-establish contact with your customer
      • Personalize your email message
      • Keep brief and to the point
      • Establish good email etiquette
      • Focus on a single subject
      • Demonstrate benefit and value
      • Include a call to action
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 90. Rich Media – Yes or No?
      • It depends on your audience and offer.
      • If it helps dramatize the offer without taking away from it, then “Yes” may be the answer.
      (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy
    • 91. End of Direct Marketing 101 Workshops Our complete Direct Marketing 101 Workshop series can be conducted via webcast or in person depending on your preference. For more information about this workshop, others and our consulting services, contact DWS Associates today at (651) 315- 7588 or [email_address] ! (651) 315-7588 Direct Marketing 101 - Creative - Media, Formats, Design & Copy