Talon Mailing & Marketing, Inc.
561 Acorn Street, Deer Park, NY 11729
Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing February 2005 Newsletter:
by Robert W. Bly -- of www.Bly.Com-- Copywriter, Consultant and Seminar Leader
A client recently phoned with a problem I’d encountered many times before.
“Our new ad campaign’s main goal is to create awareness and build image, not generate sales leads,” the ad manager explained. “But my management still tends to judge ads by counting the number of inquiries they bring in. Is there some way I can increase my ad’s pulling power without destroying the basic campaign concept?”
Fortunately, the answer is yes.
There are proven techniques you can use to increase any ads pulling power, whether your main goal is inquiries or image. Here are 31 techniques that can work for you:
1. Ask for action. Tell the reader to phone, write, contact his sales rep, request technical literature or place an order.
2. Offer free information, such as a color brochure or catalog.
3. Describe your brochure or catalog. Tell about its special features, such as a selection chart, planning guide, installation tips or other useful information it contains.
4. Show a picture of your brochure or catalog.
5. Give your literature a title that implies value. “Product Guide” is better than “catalog.” “Planning Kit” is better than “sales brochure.”
6. Include your address in the last paragraph of copy and beneath your logo, in type that is easy to read. (Also place it inside the coupon, if you use one).
7. Include a toll free number in your ad.
8. Print the toll-free number in extra-large type.
9. Put a small sketch of a telephone next to the phone number. Also use the phrase, “Call toll-free.”
10. Create a hot line. For example, a filter manufacturer might have a toll-free hot line with the numbers 1-800-FILTERS. Customers can call the hot line to place an order to get more information on the manufacturer’s products.
11. For a full-page ad, use a coupon. It will increase response 25% to 100%.
12. Make the coupon large enough that readers have plenty of room to write in their name and address.
13. Give the coupon a headline that affirms positive action -”Yes, I’d like to cut my energy costs by 50% or more.”
14. Give the reader multiple response options-”I’d like to see a demonstration,” “Have a salesperson call,” “Send me a free planning kit by return mail.”
15. For a fractional ad-one-half page or less-put a heavy dashed border around the ad. This creates the feel and appearance of a coupon, which in turn stimulates response.
16. In the closing copy for your fractional ad, say, “To receive more information, clip this ad and mail it to us with your business card.”
17. A bound-in- business reply card, appearing opposite your ad, can increase response by a factor or two or more.
18. Use a direct headline-one that promises a benefit or stresses the offer of free information-rather than a headline that is cute or clever.
19. Put your offer of a free booklet, report, selection guide or other publication in the headline of your ad.
20. Offer a free gift, such a slide rule, metric conversion fable, pocket ruler, etc.
21. Offer a free product sample.
22. Offer a free consultation, analysis, recommendation, study, cost estimate, computer printout, etc.
23. Talk abut the value and benefits of your free offer. The more you stress the offer, the better your response.
24. Highlight the free offer in a copy subhead. The last subhead of your ad could read, “Get the facts-Free.”
25. In a two-page ad, run copy describing your offer in a separate sidebar.
26. Be sure the magazine includes a reader service number in your ad.
27. Use copy and graphics that specifically point the reader toward using the reader service number. For example, an arrow pointing to the number and copy that says, “For more information circle reader service number below.”
28. Consider using more than one reader service number. For example, one number for people who want literature, another for immediate response from a salesperson.
29. In a full-page ad for multiple products, have a separate reader service number for each product or piece of literature featured in the ad.
30. Test different ads. Keep track of how many inquiries each ad pulls. Then run only those ads that pull the best.
31. Look for a sales appeal, key benefit, or theme that may be common to all of your best-pulling ads. Highlight that theme in subsequent ads.
Bob Bly is the author of more than 45 books including The Advertising Manager’s Handbook (Prentice Hall), Business-To-Business Direct Marketing (NTC Business Books), and The Copywriter’s Handbook (Henry Holt & Co.). Bob writes sales letters, direct mail packages, ads, brochures, articles, press releases, newsletters, scripts, and other marketing materials clients need to sell their products and services to businesses. To learn more or to contact him please visit his web site www.bly.com.
Super Bowl ads get the most buzz. Now Madison Avenue is turning to bloggers to learn what all the buzz is about.
Internet research companies plan to measure the "water cooler effect" of Super Bowl XXXIX ads by capturing sentiments as they search the internet for the diary like personal Web sites collectively known as the "blogosphere."
Cincinnati-based Intelliseek, plans to monitor positive and negative commentary about commercials in more than 3.5 million blogs, charging advertisers upward of $20,000 for its intelligence. That's about 1 percent of the $2.4 million price tag for a 30-second commercial spot during the super bowl.
Future research could eventually offer real-time assessment and feedback on the reception and success of ad campaigns, industry experts said, and extend the influence of an upstart medium that has already placed its mark on mainstream news publishers and broadcasters.
"Blogs are a real-world temperature gauge as to what's really going on out there," said Tim Hanlon, senior vice president at advertising-media company Starcom IP. "You've got big media at one end and the citizen's media at the other, and the collision between those diametrically opposed approaches to messaging will be very intriguing."
The Super Bowl is not only the most watched sporting event of the year, but it's also the congratulatory salute to ad creativity in the form of high-priced and oft-outsized commercials.
This year, bloggers could upstage the advertisers, with an expected outpouring of commentary from millions of self-styled media critics. Although it's unclear what impact this immediate feedback will have on the reception of ad spots, advertisers are closely watching the phenomenon.
"Big media can be held in check by media from the streets, i.e., blogs, and simultaneously this grassroots type of media can also be the source of new popular content," Hanlon said.
Buying a multimillion-dollar Super Bowl spot is often a vanity play by deep-pocketed advertisers that are attempting to make the biggest impression possible among the largest television audience of the year. Last year, an all-time high of 144 million Americans watched the Super Bowl, according to Nielsen Media Research. The roster of advertisers typically includes PepsiCo, Ford Motors, FedEx, Frito-Lay, McDonald's and Visa. But during the dot-com heyday, now defunct Internet companies including Pets.com and Webvan sought to register on the mass media radar.
Booming e-commerce and a rebound in Internet advertising have created a reversal of fortune for many dot-coms. But online companies have proven reluctant to make expensive gambles on the Super Bowl this year.
Monster.com, a jobs site, has bowed out of the game ads this year after a consistent presence after the dot-com bust. CareerBuilder.com will take its place alongside domain registration service GoDaddy.com as the only two Internet companies advertising. CareerBuilder purchased two 30-second spots, while GoDaddy sprang for just one.
GoDaddy.com CEO Bob Parsons has created his own blog in December and has weighed in with a lengthy explanation of the company's decision.
In an interview, he said he'll likely pay less attention to the blogs and more attention to his Web site's traffic following the game, given that the company is advertising to gain registrations for Internet addresses.
In another technology promotion, Motorola is hosting a first-ever wireless media center. Instead of advertising during the game, Motorola has set up a marketing campaign that lets Super Bowl attendees try out Motorola Bluetooth wireless headsets that connect to cell phones.
Intelliseek, via its site BlogPulse.com, plans to monitor the hoopla up to and surrounding the Super Bowl. The company also has recruited 50 enthusiastic bloggers to actively critique the commercials so that it can send a feed to its advertising clients.
"People are now going to the chat rooms and especially the blogs to log their feelings about everything," said Pete Blackshaw, chief marketing officer of Intelliseek, which has worked for brands including Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, Ford, Sony and Gateway. "Why are you spending that much money if you don't know the buzz it builds?"
Talon would like to welcome the following new clients this month to our growing roster of clients:
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