Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing June 2020 Newsletter.
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Build Brand Awareness Through Storytelling
By The Business.com Editorial Staff, Business.com
Telling focused stories can drive traffic to
Does your brand tell a story? If not, there may be a loss
of connection between the brand and your consumers.
A focused, simple, yet informative story that is packed with emotion can
lead to empathy, which ultimately leads to consumers.
Brand storytelling should have a beginning, middle and an end. A good
brand story will increase the chances of your brand being remembered; it
should relate a problem to a solution to a successful ending.
Brand storytelling and why it’s
Brand storytelling allows you to bridge the gap between your company and
your consumers. Storytelling has been a part of most people's lives for
as long as humans have existed. Telling and hearing a story promotes an
emotional stimulation of empathy in your brain. Humans are social
creatures, so empathy is a powerful thing; it allows humans to assess a
situation and decide where or if they are going to go further. When you
meet someone for the first time, it's their story that provides you with
an assessment of them as a person; their story tells you where they've
gone, where they are going, who they are and what they believe in. If
you have a connection to the story they are telling, it helps you decide
whether or not you are going to move forward with this new relationship.
Brand storytelling is another way of telling your story, but instead of
it being a story based on you, it is a story that can be related to your
brand. If the story promotes empathy among consumers, it will help them
to remember. The reason for this is because they will associate the
story with the brand, and if they felt empathy for the story, it is the
deciding factor on whether or not they are going to continue the
relationship (buy and promote your brand).
Brand storytelling must be packed full of personality; no one wants to
hear a rehearsed list of the events that led up to the development of
the brand, they want to know who the hero is, who the villain is and the
struggles or the odds that were overcome. Brand storytelling is
emotional and promotes empathy and if the brand has this and more,
consumers will remember it and they will want to experience the story
through the brand.
Petal structure storytelling
Petal structure is a known technique of storytelling where you take
unrelated stories and tie them together with one idea. Each story has
its own narrative by itself but its foundation is the same, like the
other story nodes that you have been telling.
The process of telling a story using this technique says you need to
tell each story as a stand-alone tale, but eventually drive the focus
back to the main plot. When you manifest how extraneous stories are
connected through the same baseline, you emphasize the importance of the
main plot and forge your message.
Mark out clear, differentiated territory
If the topic you're writing on isn't focused on your core product, you
will likely be competing with someone who is writing about their core
product. Make sure you differentiate what you’re offering – even if you
end up in a very small niche. This will allow you to carve out a
distinct space of ownership and authority and neatly avoid jostling for
awareness with a massive competitor.
Ride wider national or international trends
A mainstay for getting exposure for your product after the first wave of
interest has died down is latching on to topical issues covered in the
press. They don't necessarily have to be related to your industry, but
your content has to work as a bridge between the two.
Brand storytelling should be kept simple; leave the twists and turns for
the next bestsellers list. In brand storytelling, the story you tell
should be kept as simple as possible; focus on the problem and solution
and the success within the story you are telling. The beginning of the
story should be focused on the problem, the middle of the story contains
the solution, and the end is the success.
Having access to unique content is great, but it doesn’t guarantee
attention or press coverage. The success in getting your product noticed
lies in building the right story around it.
What to Insert With the Sales Letter in Your DM Package
By Robert W. Bly, Bly.com
Placing an additional insert into your mailing package can
boost response rates. Here's what you need to know:
creating a DM package selling a newsletter subscription, you know you’re
going to have an outer envelope, a sales letter, an order form, and a
business reply envelope. But what else? Should you use a sample issue or
specimen issue? Or is a sales brochure better? Here are the options
available and guidelines for selecting the right one for your package
and your product:
Use a sample issue when there is something inherently appealing about
the format of the newsletter itself. One example is Communication
Briefings, whose presentation of bite-size tidbits of information can
only be communicated effectively with a sample issue. Likewise, the
major advantage of Bits & Pieces -- the fact that it fits easily in a
shirt pocket -- is best demonstrated with a sample.
A “specimen” issue is a sample issue that is not the actual newsletter
from any particular month, but rather a sample composite assembled from
articles taken from multiple monthly issues. You can use an actual issue
as your sample if you have an issue with broad, strong, almost universal
appeal to the entire base of potential subscribers. Avoid using actual
issues whose main cover story or theme is of interest only to a limited
portion of the potential subscriber base; in such cases, a specimen is
The full-size brochure is an 11 X 17-inch sheet folded to form four
pages. Use a full-size brochure when you want to reprint sample pages
from the newsletter large enough to be readable; call-outs can indicate
the unique editorial features contained on each page. A full-size
brochure is also useful for illustrating multimedia products; e.g., a
loose-leaf service with multiple components such as a binder, tabs,
supplements, special inserts, and a CD-ROM.
Slim jim brochure.
A slim jim brochure is typically an 8 1/2 X 11-inch sheet of paper
folded twice to form six panels. You can also use an 8 1/2 X 14-inch
sheet folded three times to form eight panels. Use the slim-jim when
there is a limited amount to say or illustrate beyond what is already
included in your sales letter.
A premium sheet is typically an 8 1/2 X 11-inch sheet of paper printed
on one or both sides. It is used to highlight premiums and their
contents, although other information, such as an editor’s bio, may also
be included. Premium sheets are used when there are multiple premiums
(usually three or more) that need to be pictured and described in some
A buck slip is typically a 4 X 9-inch sheet of paper printed on one
side. Buck slips are used to highlight premiums. They work best when you
have only a few premiums (three or fewer) that need minimal copy to
The lift letter is a second letter inserted with the package, usually
Monarch size. It can be used either to reinforce a point made in the
main sales letter, or introduce an additional selling point or
supporting sales information not included elsewhere in the package.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Robert W. Bly is a freelance copywriter with 4 decades of experience in
direct marketing. He has written copy for over 100 clients include AARP,
Motley Fool, Agora Publishing, IBM, Institutional Investor, John Wiley,
and Medical Economics. McGraw-Hill calls Bob Bly “America’s top
copywriter.” He can be reached by phone at 973-263-0562 or via e-mail at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Bob is the author of 100 books including The Direct Mail
Revolution, published by Entrepreneur Press. Please visit Robert
Bly's website at www.bly.com.
Mail Provides Opportunity to Cut Through the Noise
With people spending so much time at home, being able to get your
mail piece directly into their hands can be a big advantage.
The continuing challenges of Covid-19 and its tragic effects has
left very little of the business world untouched.
The combination of an economic lockdown and staff either furloughed,
laid off or working from home has completely transformed many
There are however, glimmers of light in the darkness. There is an
opportunity for direct mail.
Brand in the hand
With most people spending the vast majority of their days at home, being
able to get a piece of mail directly into their hands is a big advantage
for any brand, particularly at a time when marketing is dominated by TV
and online. Offering something physical that communicates an appropriate
message can be a powerful way to build a brand or ensure loyalty once
this is all over. And for charities whose donation levels have been hit
hard by the virus, direct mail offers valuable levels of engagement and
“[Direct mail] will certainly have more attention now from people than
it’s ever had in the past,” said Simon Biltcliffe, Chief Executive of
marketing agency Webmart, in an interview with PrintWeek. “People are at
home and if something comes through their letterbox, they will look at
it. Print will be a really strong medium for people to build their brand
The Opportunity for Direct Mail
Brands should understand the power and effectiveness of print. While TV
has the reach, it remains a highly expensive option for many companies
and organizations, plus it lacks the targeting power of DM and partially
addressed mail. Of course, right now many people are living their lives
online, but the constant bombardment of online ads and content makes it
difficult for any company to really cut-though and engage a consumer.
Done well, direct mail has the power to stop people in their tracks,
grab their attention and compel them to take action. The physical nature
of the medium also means that it’s likely to stay around in the home for
longer – 17 days according to the Royal Mail study ‘The Private Life of
What’s more, direct mail has a perceived value and importance that
virtual media simply doesn’t, which is why the Government and the
National Health Service, have been using it to communicate key messages
and health advice to the population throughout this crisis.
Ahead of the curve
In any crisis, marketing is usually the first budget to be slashed. But
marketing experts agree that continuing to communicate with customers
during a crisis is vital for brands, keeping them front-of-mind for
consumers that will want normal life to return as quickly as possible
once this situation is over.
“The best time to market to people is when others are not,” said Robin
Sumner, Managing Director of marketing agency Romax. “After the initial
panic subsides and the society accepts the ‘new normal’, then trade will
return swiftly – those that have continued to promote during that time
will be ahead of the curve.”
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If you do not wish to receive the Talon Mailing & Marketing Newsletter
Build Brand Awareness Through Storytelling
Deciding What to Insert With the Sales Letter in Your DM Package
Direct Mail Provides Opportunity to Cut Through the Noise
Mike Borkan's Apps & Links - Apps & 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 Apps & Links:
Some interesting things to check out...
- Cargo is a professional site building platform for designers and
Spatial.io - How Work Should Be.
Collaborate from anywhere in VR, AR, Desktop & Mobile. Create a lifelike
avatar. View 3D models, presentations, videos, & photos,
Gramara.com/en - More than just
grammar correction - Gramara helps you write with fluency and clarity.
Sick of staying at home? Me too! Go to a virtual beach, walk the streets
of Amsterdam, sit at a coffee shop, and visit so many great places. This
free app works best on a desktop monitor.
Isolation.is - You can choose from
many "postcards" and then email them to your family and friends. A
perfect way of staying in touch during the Covid 19 stay-at-home period.
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 increase revenue.
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