Do you know the magic formula to interrupt, engage, educate and make a compelling no-risk offer to optimize results?
Here are seven steps to ensure your direct mail program is a roaring success!
Get the List Right!
No matter how good a job you do on your offer, the most important step in any direct mail program is getting the list right. Be sure you have discovered your focused target market and that the people you choose to mail are the right people.
Get It Opened!
Creativity starts on the outside. Your envelope must have the right teaser copy to make it worth the decision maker’s time to open. Perhaps more importantly, you must discover how you get through the gate keeper (receptionist, secretary, etc.) and be sure it lands on the decision maker’s desk.
Headlines are Everything!
Repeat after me – Every letter needs a headline! Every letter needs a headline! Every letter needs a headline!
What does every letter need? A HEADLINE!!!
Don’t just launch into your copy.
Take the time to convey the most compelling benefit you have to offer in your letter – give the reader a reason to continue reading – or run the risk of having your letter tossed immediately.
How many headlines should you try before you pick the one you will use? Two? Five? Ten? Twenty?
The answer is as many as you can conceive. We’ll often write fifty headlines or more before we even test the first one – and we continuously test headlines against the control once we’ve launched a direct mail program.
Here’s a quick sample from the legendary Jay Abraham:
Headline # 1: “Auto Insurance at Lower Rates if You Are a Careful Driver”
Headline # 2: “How to Turn Your Careful Driving Into Money”
Headline # 2 pulled 1,200 percent better than headline # 1.
How important are headlines to your business?
Long Copy Wins!
We love it when people tell us our sales letters are too long.
We ask them if they would read every word of a 24-page letter. They immediately respond “no way!”
After we negotiate the bet, I tell them the headline is: “This letter is all about YOU!”
We haven’t lost that bet yet! They will read every word.
The point is your sales copy needs to educate your reader on why to consider your offer.
If your copy is compelling, there is no rule that says you have to keep your letters to a page. We routinely develop four, eight, sixteen – even twenty-four page sales letters for our clients – that sell thousands of times better than any one or two page letter.
How long should your next sales letter be? Long enough to motivate the reader to take action now – that’s all!
Make a Compelling Offer!
You must have a CALL to ACTION in your sales letter.
There must be something that the reader needs to do right now – or never have the opportunity again. You must create urgency – they must do it now!
Everything in your sales letter is leading the reader through to your call to action. The benefits of choosing your business, your emotional appeal, your proof and credibility through testimonials, endorsements and awards, your unique selling proposition, your guarantee – all lead the reader to take action now!
Don’t forget the “secret” closing to any sales letter – always, always, always include a “P.S.” that reinforces the urgency of taking action now!
You’ve got to track results. Why?
Because you have to learn what works – and do more of it – and what doesn’t work – and stop it immediately.
What are you tracking?
- How many responses are you getting?
- How many are turning into sales?
Keep records of each for every mailing. You’ve got to learn from the numbers.
You’ve also got to test.
- You’ll test one envelope vs. another envelope.
- You’ll test one headline vs. another headline.
- You’ll test one offer vs. another offer.
The secret is to only test one variable at a time – you can’t change the envelope, headline and offer all at once and learn which variable caused the change in results.
Get in the game for the long haul, not the quick fix.
Commit to A Direct Mail Program
Has someone ever told you direct mail doesn’t work? Most of the time, they are right. They did one mailing, maybe two, and didn’t get results.
Two things hurt them.
First, their mailing probably wasn’t designed for the right target market, with great teaser copy, a compelling headline, educational sales copy or an “action now” offer. It was a set-up for failure.
Second, there was no commitment to stay with the program. Prospects need multiple exposures to even be conscious of your existence. How many times should you communicate with a target audience before you can expect results?
There’s no magic number – although some suggest nine, twelve, fifteen even as many as twenty-one exposures – but we know it’s more than two!
So, plan your direct mail program for the year and start communicating with your focused target market today! Go Direct! It Works!
Are you ready for direct mail success? Let’s work together to launch your direct mail program!