Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing November 2017 Newsletter.
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Consider Mail Believable as Digital Faces Trust Fatigue
By Michael Feeley, Thedrum.com
Marketers that remain fixated with digital
channels might need to rethink their strategy.
New research has revealed that 87% of consumers consider mail
communications to be ‘believable’, while only 48% feel the same way about
email. The same research found that mail is regarded as ‘more likely to
grab the recipient’s attention’.
Conducted in May of this year by Royal Mail MarketReach and TNS, the
research followed the same model set by studies carried out in 2007 and
2013, allowing shifts in consumer opinion to be tracked over a ten-year
period. The surveys included several questions addressing emotional
engagement, ie how mail makes the respondent feel about the sender
organization, and what it implies about how that organization regards them
Between 2007 and 2017, the percentage of people stating that mail makes
them ‘feel valued’ has increased to 70%, compared to only 43% in 2007 and
57% in 2013. 70% also responded that mail also ‘gives them a better
impression of the company’, again rising from 53% in 2007 and 55% in 2013.
The findings confirm that, in a digital world, where a vast and growing
volume of emails are sent every day, the comparative rarity of real-world
‘physical’ mail has led to it becoming increasingly valued and trusted by
consumers. Better yet for marketers, the media can positively impact on
the perceived trustworthiness of the communication itself and help to
create a more rounded, more believable brand identity.
It's interesting to note that, while marketers often debate how best to
mix the strengths of the various mediums available to them, little thought
is dedicated to how consumers’ relationships to those mediums may evolve
over time. One potential reason for consumers’ positive shift towards mail
may be, ironically, the way that marketers have over-utilized email
marketing in the past, by sending too many irrelevant emails to the wrong
Likewise, in the age of fake news, malware and phishing, it may be that a
wider, growing unease or ‘trust fatigue’ with digital channels is fuelling
the increased consumer desire for the trustworthiness and tangibility of
But it’s not just all about the ‘feels’: the recent IPA TouchPoints survey
tracked the range of responses from consumers to receiving mail and found
that commercially relevant responses included increased enquiries online
and by phone, increased store visits, purchases and service renewals. A
Brand Science review of multi-channel campaigns concluded that when mail
was included in the marketing mix, campaigns had 12% bigger ROI than those
While digital communications remain a key and crucial part of the
marketer’s toolkit, this latest research makes it clear that email cannot
be regarded as a straight replacement for mail, nor is it likely to
deliver the same results in terms of consumer engagement and sales
Ten Golden Rules of Direct Response Marketing
Whether marketing happens online or off, there is one thing every smart
integrated marketer worth their salt is after: They want the customer to
So let’s review the 10 commandments of direct response
marketing, as covered in one of the most authoritative books on the topic,
No BS Direct Marketing by Dan S. Kennedy, a top marketing
consultant and legendary copywriter. Here’s a quick look at Kennedy’s
1. There Will Always Be An Offer or
In order to get consumers to stand up and take notice, come up with an
offer “…that tells the consumer how your product can enhance their life,
solve their problems, make their day better etc, and the steps they need
to take in order to reap the benefits.”
2. There Will Be Reason To Respond Right
It’s called direct response marketing for a reason: you need your customer
or prospect to respond RIGHT NOW. What sort of offer will spur them to
3. Clear Instructions
Don’t make your customers guess. Tell them exactly what to do next!
4. There Will Be Tracking And Measurement
As Dan Kennedy writes, “Tracking means accurately collecting all the
information you need to determine what advertising is working and what
isn’t, which offer is pulling and which isn’t, what marketing has traction
and what doesn’t.” In other words, tracking equals paying careful
attention to ROI!
5. Branding As a By-Product
The suggestion here is that integrated marketers at smaller companies
can’t afford the luxury of branding campaigns. Stick to call to action
offers “that are designed to motivate qualified leads to step forward and
6. There Will Be Follow-Up
We're not just talking about a one-time follow up based on a lead. Treat
that lead like gold and as the beginning of a valuable relationship. Why?
Because, “There are fortunes in the follow-up.”
7. There Will Be Strong Copy
When all is said and done (and written), “your copy must be compelling
enough to get your prospects to take immediate action. Your vocabulary
choices should aggravate your prospect’s problems so much so that they can
almost feel the pain, and then soothe them immediately with whatever it is
you’re offering, and how it can solve their issue.” And by all means don’t
let bad grammar derail a powerful offer:
8. In General, It Will Look Like
Master marketers Dan Kennedy and Bill Glazer “suggest making a swipe file
of mail-order newspapers and magazine advertisements that show clear calls
to action. Next time you construct an offer, flip through the file for
9. Results Rule, Period.
It doesn’t’ matter what integrated marketers think. All that counts is
what the customers think. “If you make sales, then your strategy has
worked. If it doesn’t make sales, scrap it.”
10. Keep Your Business On A Strict Direct
Marketing Diet For At Least Six Months.
Dan Kennedy says it best,” anything that doesn’t conform to the prior nine
rules, do not let it in at all. Just say no. And bar the door.”
Granted, these 10 direct response commandments are built around tough
love, and they are definitely old school. But why not check out the
tried-and-true disciplines Kennedy recommends – and let the results speak
Tips For Creating B2B Copy That Connects
By Beth Negus Viveiros,
Do your words really capture
At a recent B2B Connect to Convert conference, HBT Marketing’s Chief
Creative Officer Nancy Harhut shared key ideas for better B2B copy writing
in a content master class. Here’s 10 of her top tips.
1. The Authority Principle:
Position your brand as one whose words should be taken seriously. If
someone is an authority figure, we tend to believe what they say. As an
example, Harhut cited the time criminals reportedly dressed as Wells Fargo
security guards and had their ill-gotten gains literally just handed to
them because they looked the part.
2. Compliance Triggers:
The word “because” is extremely powerful, said Harhut. “People are more
likely to do what we ask them to if we give them a reason why. The word
‘because’ is a compliance trigger—when we hear it, we start to act like
little bobble heads and just nod in agreement, even before we hear the
3. Be Consistent:
People like consistency–if you can get them to say “yes” once, they’re
more likely to do so again. “Remind people if they’ve said yes before, and
make it easier for them to do so again,” she said.
4. Get People to Commit:
Once something is in writing, it seems more concrete and more real. Sony
once ran a contest asking users to rate their business software in
exchange for a chance to win a suite of programs. The resulting reviews
were useful in several ways to cross- and up-sell, noted Harhut.
“Something interesting happens when you write something down. You feel
like you need to live up to those words.” This is the idea of cognitive
dissonance, she said. “If we’ve gone on record saying something, we will
change our behavior to sync up to that.”
5. Consider the Size and Placement of Copy:
Contrary to what one might think, some studies have shown that when a sale
price is printed in a smaller font, people think it is a better deal.
Anchor your sale price by putting it to the right of the original price.
Also, she said, printing the original and sale price further apart makes
them feel like they are further apart not only physically but in amount as
6. Eye Magnets:
When people read, they tend to skim and scan. Certain words act as eye
magnets, drawing readers to where you want the most attention. “Free”
works well, and buyers will often spend more to get a free gift or free
shipping. “Secret” is also a strong word, as it helps persuade people they
are getting special access to something not readily available. “Alert”
gets attention because people are constantly on the lookout for possible
danger, while “minutes” as in “This will only take five minutes of your
time” can imply that something is easy to accomplish.
The words you use to surround a product or offer can make a huge
difference and put them in context, said Harhut. For example, say you have
“Yes” or “No” buttons near an offer. Frame those buttons as “Yes, get the
free case study now” and “No, I’d rather not know how my marketing is
8. Herd Mentality:
Your customer may be starting from a point of skepticism. Showing them
that others have already taken action can help move along their
consideration process, she noted. “Almost sold out” lets people know they
need to act fast, while a long list of customers, donors or attendees
gives them confidence that others have already taken the leap.
Generally speaking, you want to avoid jargon. “You think it will make you
sound more impressive, but typically it backfires,” said Harhut. “People
don’t want to work too hard—write in easily accessible terms. Don’t use a
75 cent word when a 25 cent word will do.” Are there exceptions to this
rule? Sure. If you’re trying to convey insider status or suggest more
value, this is where to spend those pricier words.
10. Call to Action:
Don’t confuse people. Have one clear call to action in your copy. If you
must have two, make the most important ask the most prominent one. Keep
your CTA simple, and remove extraneous language.
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Tuesday December 12, 2017.
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Consumers Consider Mail Believable as Digital Faces Trust Fatigue
The 10 Golden Rules of Direct Response Marketing
10 Tips For Creating B2B Copy That Connects
Mike Borkan's Apps & Links - Apps & Web sites you probably
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