Talon Mailing & Marketing

561 Acorn Street
Deer Park, NY 11729

(631) 667-5500

www.talon.com

Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing January 2010  Newsletter:

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10 Steps For Marketing Success in 2010.

By Scott Harris. San Fernando Valley Business Journal.

If you follow these 10 steps in 2010, you will have a more successful year. 

The New Year is typically a time for making New Year’s resolutions. For all of us that are responsible for marketing, I have come up with a list of 10 resolutions that can and should be kept. If you do so, your 2010 marketing campaign will be a successful one. So, forget that unused gym membership, here come some resolutions of value!

1. Forget 2009. Sure, analyze it and learn from it – but move on. Today’s economy is our new reality and blaming Wall Street is not an acceptable excuse for not doing well in 2010. We’re all dealing with the same economic environment, which means we have the same opportunities and the same challenges that our competitors do.

George Santayana said, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." However, the lesser known, but equally important counterpart to that is, “Those who wallow in the past will never escape it.”

2. Grow success. If something you’ve been doing is working, keep it going and consider expansion. Analyze why it’s working and do more of it. While a successful marketing campaign does require some level of diversity, leaning on those efforts that have been working just makes good sense.

3. Try something new. Have you embraced social marketing? Is your website a source of pride and a great marketing tool, or something you’re a bit embarrassed to share? Are you doing e-blasts, public and community relations? Have you considered old-fashioned direct mail? Ignorance, fear and habit are not good reasons for failing.

4. Let it go. If something has not been working, it’s time to re-evaluate. Tradition is for families and holidays, not marketing. I see too many clients attending expensive trade shows, “because we always have.” Are they really sales and marketing opportunities, or paid vacations to catch up with old friends? Just because you’ve “always” advertised with XYZ, does not mean you should again.

5. Competition. Follow what they are doing. See where they invest, what they are focused on, what new markets they’re exploring, as well as which old ones they are letting go of. It’s very inexpensive market research, and it’s a mistake not to take advantage of it.

6. Full budget. Many companies reduced, or even eliminated, their marketing budget for 2009. Convince yourself, or your boss, that good marketing is an investment, not an expense, and that without it you are doomed to fail. Fight for a budget that allows you to do your job – and do it well.

7. Plan. Now that you’ve pulled together a budget, looked at what’s working, what isn’t and what the competition is doing – plan! Make every dollar count and maximize your Return on Investment (ROI). If you take your budget and your marketing seriously, so will your boss, your board and, most importantly, your customers, clients and prospects.

8. Stick to the plan. Most marketing plans fail because they are not followed. It is so easy to fall back into old habits and do the safe things that we’ve always done. Keep the plan on your desk, not locked away in a filing cabinet. Evaluate each opportunity against the plan. If things change, update the plan, but have one and work it.

9. Customers and clients first, prospects second. While we all enjoy bringing in new business, and need to in order to be successful, don’t lose sight of your existing customers and clients. It is far more expensive to get new business than it is to keep existing business.

10. Be positive! Commiserate in private. To your customers, clients and prospects – be positive. Ask yourself whom you prefer to work with – someone who whines about the economy or how poorly their business is doing, or someone who is upbeat, looking forward and moving ahead? Your marketing should reflect that same positive attitude and image.

There's my ten.  You may or may not join the gym, read the book or call Mom and Dad more often, but if you follow these 10 steps in 2010, you will have a more successful year than if you don’t. Good luck and Happy New Year – now get to work!


6 Things You Should Know Before Renting A List.

By Tom Palmese.

Whether it’s postal or email, the list you use can make or break your success in Direct Marketing.

It's amazing how many professionals turn to the web to find a cheap list. Why would you commit all your marketing dollars just to one list when there are over 73,000 postal, email and telemarketing list on the market today?

Not all lists are created equally. How do you know you’re getting accurate information? Your list choice accounts for 75-85 percent of your success or failure. It is the one process that should not be rushed.

Six things you should know before renting a list online:

1) Don't Rent Lists Without Proper Information & Guidance.  Many new to direct marketing flock to the Internet and sign up for one of those low monthly self serve services or share your leads programs. Most, if not all are from compiled sources. Why would you limit your marketing efforts to only one list source when they’re so many to choose from? My advise is don’t rent lists yourself unless you understand data intimately. Each list has strengths and weaknesses. Do you know them? Does the list match your existing customer base? One rule in direct marketing is that your next customer will look a lot like your last.


2) More About Compiled Lists.  Many compilers set up wholesale arrangements with other list companies. The revenue can be low and that means there is a tendency not to update the list as often . Names and addresses can be more than a year old.  Imagine how your promotion can be negatively affected when you find that 30% or more of your intended recipients never received your mail piece. Why? Because 20% of consumers change their address each year on average. For B2B when you factor in openings, closings and moving the percentage is even higher. None of your mail comes back undeliverable because it is 3rd class and the post office will not send it back to you.


3) Can you really send out a million emails for only $19.95? There are companies that claim they can reach every audience with their email list. This is absolutely not true. They are harvesting names on the Internet or setting up registration sites for the sole purpose of collecting email addresses. A company that provides email addresses directly to you is not CAN SPAM compliant. This means If you use these lists you will be labeled a spammer and you will be black listed. Worse you and/or your ISP can get shut down or fined.


Anyone who releases their e-mail list is basically giving away their bread and butter without any way of policing the use of it. Would you give away your client file to just anyone?

Tip: Ask for the source of the data. Remember, you want a file that matches your best prospect from your customer database. Look for focused publications and legitimate websites that offer valuable content to subscribers and that offer an email opportunity. If you don’t have good brand recognition within your target market, email may not be the right fit for you.

4) Get to know your customer base.  Take a hard look at your existing customer base. This applies to both consumer and B2B. Find out their age, income, title, industry, married, single, children, geography etc. You will now have a profile of who your best customers are and where they come from.


5) When marketing to only a few zip codes compiled data is usually your only option. There is only a few national compilers for consumer and B2B lists. Each has their strengths and weaknesses so knowing when to use one over the other is important. Be sure to hire a professional list broker to help you sort out opportunities and pitfalls. This leads us to the final fact.


6) List Brokers are very important to your success.  A list broker guides you towards the best list(s) for your offer based on their past client experiences and industry knowledge. A broker will steer you away from non-performing lists and selections. The list owner pays a list broker a standard commission only when an order is placed. What that means is the list brokers service to you is free and their primary goal is to make your direct marketing experience as successful as possible.
As you can see there is more than meets the eye when selecting lists. Knowing how data is gathered, updated, and strengths and weakness of data sources is a full time job. This is not something you can learn on the Internet quickly because it takes years of experience working with mailers and many different list sources.

Tom Palmese, VP Mazzone Marketing Group, specializes in list acquisition and marketing programs for B2B and Consumer mailers in the USA and Canada. He can be reached at 516-665-1220 or tpalmese@mazzonemarektinggroup.com.
 


Using Testimonial Letters For More Effective Direct Marketing.

By: Jason Hanson, Real Estate Agent.

What others say about you is 1,000 times more powerful than what you say about yourself.

Do you know the best type of direct mail you can send out? Something that I can guarantee 99% of your competition never does. And the reason that when I go into a house to close a deal I see a stack of direct mail from my competitors… yet I’m the one walking out with a signed contract?

Two words:  Testimonial mailings.

A few years back I did a subject-to deal with an elderly woman and she wrote me one of the best testimonials I’ve ever received. She was about to lose her house and was so thankful that I saved her from financial ruin. She mentioned that she would be happy to refer others to me and that people could call her if I ever needed a referral.

Well, soon after this I read in a marketing book about how companies use testimonial mailings to get higher response rates when using direct mail.

This I had to try. I received permission from the woman to include her letter in an upcoming direct mail campaign. Next, I wrote a brand new letter that explained how I was looking for more houses in Fredericksburg, VA and that I had recently helped Jane Doe who lives in their area and here’s the letter that Jane Doe sent me.

The testimonial mailing helped me raise my response rates tremendously.

If you include a testimonial letter in your next promotion I bet you will see an increased response rate too. Make sure the testimonial you use is detailed,  interesting and specific. Do not use a boring testimonial that says “John Doe is a nice guy who helped me out.” Instead the testimonial should gush about how you’re a lifesaver and how you helped your customer.


If you don’t have testimonials, simply ask for them. If you give people good customer service and a good product most of them will be more than happy to write you a testimonial.

This is probably one of the easiest ways to boost response and make more sales because what others say about you is 1,000 times more powerful than what you say about yourself.


  Ticket Giveaway!

Talon has a VIP Package & great seats for you to win.

We are giving away a pair of tickets to see the New York Islanders!  The game includes access to a private VIP area with complimentary dinner (plenty of food, snacks and drinks) and private restrooms. You may run into current & former players and other VIP's.   To win, be the first telephone caller (please don’t hit reply or email). Voice Mail messages count so it's fine to leave a voice mail.   Call Michael Borkan at 631-667-5500 x 11. 

The Islander tickets are center ice and offer the best view in the arena! 

  • Thursday January 21, The Islanders vs. The Florida Panthers. 7:00 PM.

Do you know of anyone else who would be interested in receiving our newsletter?  Please let us know by email:  mb@talon-mailing.com

To learn more about our company, please visit our web site: www.talon.com or contact Michael Borkan at (631) 667-5500 x 11.


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In this Issue:

10 Steps For Marketing Success in 2010.

6 Things You Should Know Before Renting A List.

Using Testimonial Letters For More Effective Marketing.

Islander VIP Ticket Giveaway!

New Clients

Mike Borkan's Links - Websites you probably haven't seen.

View Samples of our work.

Newsletter Archives


New Clients:





Talon welcomes the following new clients this month to our growing roster of customers:
  • Sterling

  • Vault.com

  • Six new lists from Statlistics


Mike's Favorite Links:

Some interesting links...

Mashable.com - Social Media news blog covering cool new websites and social networks: Facebook, Google, Twitter, MySpace and YouTube.

Compete.com - helps you benefit from click-sharing by providing free services that create a more trusted, transparent, and valuable Internet.

Techland.com - Tech, Games, Comics, Movies. We Promise Not to Tell.

Radaronline.com - One of the best celebrity News & gossip sites.  Thanks Tiger for recommending this site.

Bing.com/maps/ - Maps of the world, street map search, route planner, directions and traffic, satellite and aerial images, birds eye view, yellow pages, 3D cities.

Magcover.com - Really great site.  Create your own magazine covers (see below).



Work Samples:

Did you know Talon offers the following services? 

Click on the links below to see samples.


Newsletters Archives:

Click here if you wish to see old newsletters. 


Click on these Links to Learn More About Talon:

The Tour


Samples


Our Services


List Rentals


Postage Rates


Testimonials


Archived Newsletters


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Oasis


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