Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing June 2015 Newsletter.
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One-to-One Content Points to the Future of Content Marketing
By Marc Cowlin,
See how Disney creates marketing magic with one-to-one communications.
Very soon I will board a plane bound for Orlando with my
family — yes, we're headed to Disney World. On the surface there's nothing
remarkable about this trip or my planning process: it's a family trip, I
made the reservation online, received an email confirmation and now we
wait for our departure date. Then, out of the blue, things got exciting.
So exciting, in fact, that my experience brought about a glimpse of the
future of one-to-one content marketing, and it was beautiful.
One-to-one content via snail mail?
What was this magical moment?
Yes, direct mail.
But, not just any direct mail, personalized direct mail relevant to my
family and our vacation that eventually moves us to an online and mobile
Sure, we've all seen the glories of mail merge and one-off customized
printing, it's not terribly new, but when you receive it, and it's about
you, it makes an impact. My mini book had a custom cover, reservation
information, info about my hotel (not all of the others), info about each
of the parks, and, most importantly, it's all about MY TRIP.
Brilliantly, they move me from the book to the website with the promise of
customizing "My Disney Experience." Once online I can order MagicBands and
reserve attractions ahead of time via FastPass+. Disney is allowing me to
use technology to customize my vacation, right down to what ride I want to
experience on what day and at what time. From there, I am asked to
download an app for my mobile phone that will make all of my plans
available once I begin traveling. What future Disney visitor wouldn't love
Three one-to-one content tips from Disney
Personalize: All customers are unique, have different needs, especially in
travel. Since this is not a one-size-fits-all world, what I need for my
trip is different from just about every other person. Disney knew that and
delivered a book that is unique to my trip. Rather than sending a generic
40-page book that explains ALL hotels, and all attractions, Disney sent a
book that was specific to my hotel and my reservation details. I received
all the information I need in a custom 15-page book. It works, and it's
Be Helpful: Most people don't often travel, and most people
don't go to Disney parks on a regular basis. As such, the experience can
be very overwhelming, and in some cases stressful. By sending this book,
connecting to a custom online experience and urging use of an on-the-go
app with every last detail, Disney is eliminating some of the anxiety that
comes with travel. And more than that, they are making the experience of
planning time and attractions fun and interactive. One of the key pillars
of content marketing is to ALWAYS to be helpful. Everything content
marketers do should be designed to serve the customer, not market to the
customer. In the case of Disney, every bit of information is designed to
help my family on our journey to Florida. It works, and it's brilliant.
It comes as no surprise that Disney and team are brilliant marketers. So
brilliant, in fact, that this one experience gives all marketers a few
lessons about how to harness content and technology to build one-to-one
content marketing campaigns that work – really well.
Build excitement: Let's face it; Disney is not a cheap vacation.
Generally, when you make reservations for a trip, you receive a nothing
more than a generic email confirmation. As time passes many think about
the money spent, maybe search online to find things to do, but if
excitement is building it's because the customer is building it on their
own. By providing custom touch points filled with useful and exciting
content, unique to my family post-purchase, Disney is helping to build
excitement. It works, and it's brilliant.
What this means for the rest of us
Of course, not all of us have the marketing budget of Disney or a product
as exciting as the "happiest place on earth." So, what are we to do with
these one-to-one content lessons from Disney? If you break it down, it
becomes clear that what Disney has done to support one-to-one marketing is
- They created a repository of content
- They gathered all of my travel details (dates, hotel package, etc.)
- They selected content based on my travel details
- They sent it to me in the form of a personalized book that drives me to an
Imagine how powerful this model would be if a salesman held these tools in
the palm of their hand. If they could marry the needs of their customer
with content and send it in real-time, exactly when it's needed to
whatever device makes sense. That salesman would have the ability to
create one-to-one sales materials on-the-go.
The good news is that they can; it's a product and its available now. In
the spirit of full disclosure, it's a Thismoment solution and we call it
Content on Demand. But that is not the point of this article. The point of
this article is to promote the power of thinking differently.
This model works for any industry; the key is content, data and technology
to marry the two into a deliverable piece of content that will truly mean
something to ONE customer. In the end, any purchase, be it a trip sold to
an individual or software sold to an enterprise, is about the purchaser.
As marketers we need to:
Stop thinking solely about how we serve a broad audience and start
thinking more about how we can serve the individual customer
Pay just as much attention to post-sale as we do pre-sale
Explore beyond the obvious channels
Think about how to tie content to other teams within the organization
Taking a page out of the Disney playbook, we need to ask ourselves how we
can transform our marketing strategy into exciting, useful and helpful
content aimed at helping ONE customer. If we do this, we will create
powerful connections like the one Disney created with me, and in the end,
that's what it's all about, creating connections that build experience and
So Many Small Businesses Don't Spend Enough on Marketing
By Jose Vasquez,
A majority of small businesses neglect their marketing strategies,
restricting spending and ultimately limiting their true potential.
It's a problem I see almost every day; small businesses don't have as much
revenue or capital as they'd like to have, so they're forced to make cuts
and avoid investing in things they feel they don't need. And all too
often, marketing and advertising dollars are the first to go.
Why is this? There's a perception that marketing is nice, but unnecessary
for a business. As long as you're producing something of value (a product
or a service), every other strategy your company uses must be superfluous.
There's some degree of truth to this assertion -- it is necessary to get
your operations down before investing heavily in a marketing campaign --
but that doesn't mean you can get away with avoiding marketing altogether.
Marketing is the only way to get more exposure for your brand, and the
only reliable long-term strategy to attract more business to it. That's
why success in marketing is defined in terms of ROI, your return on
investment. It's a measure of the amount of business you bring in relative
to the amount of money you spent to do it. In effect, as long as your ROI
is positive, your investment pays for itself and then some.
Therefore, the problem with spending "too much" money on marketing is
nonexistent. As long as your ROI is positive, every dollar you put into
marketing will yield more than a dollar in return. The only time there's a
problem is if your ROI is negative, in which case you may not be handling
your marketing campaign effectively.
The solution, then, is to work with a professional with experience in
running successful, positive-ROI campaigns. That could mean hiring someone
with years of experience or outsourcing your work to a quality marketing
and advertising firm -- however you choose to do it, you will be taking a
risk, but the potential payoff is worth it. Once you've stabilized a
successful, positive-ROI marketing strategy, you'll basically be making
free money off of every dollar you put into it.
The next time you think about cutting your marketing spend or work on
reallocating your existing company budgets, remember -- marketing isn't a
way to spend money, it's a way to invest it.
Jose Vasquez is an entrepreneur dedicated to helping startup technology
companies get the direction and momentum they need to succeed. As the
founder of Build. Brand. Blast., Jose has established a collective
resource for tech entrepreneurs to consult when brainstorming, creating,
launching, or expanding a new business.
Seven Tips to a Successful Direct Mailing
By Alice Brown
These top tips will increase response rates and grow your revenue.
1. Use a Quality,
Targeted Mailing List
Every successful direct mail campaign begins with a quality, targeted
direct mail list.
Why? Because a ‘great’ direct mail list maximizes the number of people
who receive your offer, it increases your response rates and ultimately,
it helps boost the return on your investment!
Quality, up-to-date (correct) records help maximize the number of mail
pieces that get delivered to your customers and in turn, help maximize
the number of mail pieces that get seen by the people/businesses who are
likely to want your products and services. If your direct mail list
includes old or incorrect addresses, you will have a higher number of
undeliverable and returned mail pieces, and unfortunately a lower return
on your investment. That’s the last thing you want!
Targeted data gets your message/promotion in front of the people who are
most likely to purchase your product or service.
For example: If you own a yoga studio and are looking to mail a postcard
that offers a ‘free’ class to every new student, do you think it would be
better to mail the postcard to everyone in your state, or to people who
are living within 5 miles of your studio and who are women between the
ages of 18-65?
2. Write a Compelling “Call to Action”
A successful direct mail postcard/flyer/brochure etc must include a
compelling ‘call to action’ that drives the reader to ‘act’ and ‘respond’
to your mailing.
A ‘call to action’ can be anything from asking your customer to go online
to your website and fill out a form, to picking up the phone and calling
you before the end of the month, or to stopping by and visiting your
No matter what your ‘call to action’ is, it needs to be obvious and
compelling, so there’s no doubt in the reader’s mind about what they need
to do to be able to take advantage of the promotion that you’re offering
3. Give them an Offer they Can’t Refuse
Create a compelling offer that will drive your customers to take action
and respond to your message. Your promotion can be ‘buy one get one
free’, or ‘$20 off your first order’ or simply a discounted price for a
The key thing to remember when you’re creating an offer, is that the more
valuable and enticing your offer is, the more likely it is that your
reader will respond.
Offers with ‘expiration dates’ yield quicker results and drive customers
to take action, sooner rather than later.
4. Use Bold, Simple Designs & Layouts
The colors, fonts and images that you use on your mail piece can impact
how your customer will respond to your message. After all, first
impressions are lasting impressions, and if someone has never heard of
your company before, it’s very important for your mail piece to
accurately reflect your business, and make you stand out (in a good way!)
and leave your reader with a positive, lasting first impression.
Use the ‘less is more’ principle when it comes to the design and layout
of your mailing and use simple bold fonts, hard hitting, punchy copy, and
clear appropriate images to engage your readers and keep them focused on
5. Be Honest!
Don’t use gimmicks or ‘small print’ to trap your valued customers and
potential new clients.
Be honest with them about who you are as a company and what products you
offer. Honesty and transparency are paramount and can be the difference
between earning a good reputation and building a steady, loyal group of
repeat customers, and creating a bad reputation that’s hard to break.
6. Get your Timing Right
Watch your competition closely, learn from their mistakes and keep an eye
on their marketing and advertising efforts; boost your marketing
campaigns when your competitors are lying low and economizing, and take
advantage of the opportunities this creates to win over new customers.
Repeat mailings deliver higher response rates than one-time mailings;
when you increase the number of times a customer sees your offer, you
also increase the chance that your customer will respond to it. Think
about running repeat mailings and sending out one campaign once/week for
3 consecutive weeks to get maximum results.
7. Track your Results
Track your campaigns and the responses you get so that you know how
effective each campaign is.
Make sure you ask new customers where they heard about your services –
was it online, driving by, or from a postcard mailing? If you run several
different marketing campaigns throughout the year, keep track of which
campaign delivers the best results and boost the number of mailings on
the next campaign and watch your sales soar and your business grow!
About The Author:
Alice Brown is the Editor in Chief of 'Be
Direct', the monthly newsletter for www.LeadsPlease.com. 'Be Direct' is
dedicated to providing direct mail industry news, trends, updates and
direct marketing tips and tricks.
Win Yankee Tickets!
Enjoy a great day at Yankee Stadium!
We are giving away two tickets to see the New York Yankees.
you have to do to win is be the first telephone caller (please don’t hit reply or send an email). Voice
mail messages count so it's fine to leave a message. Call Michael Borkan at
(631) 667-5500 x 11. These tickets are great seats and close to the field!
Tuesday June 23rd, 2015. Yankees vs.
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Disney's One-to-One Content Points to the Future of Content Marketing
Why Many Small Businesses Don't Spend Enough on Marketing
Seven Tips to a Successful Direct Mailing
Mike Borkan's Links - Web sites you probably
View Samples of Our Work
Direct Mail Humor!
Talon welcomes the following new clients this month to our growing roster
Mike's Favorite Links:
Some interesting links...
flowvella.com - Free Presentation
Software that Engages and Gets Better Results.
canva.com - Canva makes design simple
for everyone. Create designs for Web or print: blog graphics,
presentations, Facebook covers, flyers, posters, invitations and more.
opinionpodcasting.com - The
world's only easy to use podcast maker. Record, edit and publish online
for free – ready for Twitter, Facebook, iTunes Podcast Directory, and any
listening app! They also give you a great homepage and an RSS-feed.
resnap.com - Creating a photo book has
never been so easy. Edit, save and share your own photo book on social
media or embed it on your website.
reddit.tv - Watch the newest, coolest
videos the web has to offer in one place.
theleadsports.com - A
refreshingly honest sports newsletter for busy people.
Did you know Talon offers the following services?
Click on the links below to see samples.
Direct Mail Humor!
Click on image below to enlarge.
Do you need help marketing to your clients? Talon can
help! Call Michael Borkan at 631-667-5500 x 11 to learn how to
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