There’s a certain mindset in direct response marketing folks. We are very results oriented. We find it very difficult to just go out for a drive or go to the mall just to hang out and browse—we want a definite destination and at least an estimated time of arrival, and we go to the mall to find and buy something.
Most direct response marketers can’t watch a sports telecast unless they’ve wagered on the game nor play golf, cards or cribbage but for money. In short, we want to KNOW if we have won. We want to KNOW if we have accomplished an aim.
While this tendency gets in the way of a friendly game night, it is extremely useful in avoiding the vagueness that permeates most small business owners’ marketing strategies. The chief way we avoid this vagueness is through strict adherence to a set of proven, money-making rules.
There are 10 customer-getting, sales-boosting tactics that if you LIVE by them, you can find success in your small business and your marketing activities.
1. There will always be an offer (or offers)
2. There will be a reason to respond right now
3. You will give clear instructions
4. There will be tracking, measurement and accountability
5. Any brand-building that occurs will be a happy by-product of your marketing
6. There will be follow-up
7. There will be strong copy
8. It will look like “mail order” advertising
9. Results rule. PERIOD.
10. You will be a tough minded disciplinarian and put your business on a strict direct marketing diet
In my book, “No B.S. Direct Marketing,” I tackle each rule in depth. I once wrote an entire book on breaking the rules and, generally speaking, I think rules are for other, ordinary mortals—certainly not for me, and not for you, either, if you are a true entrepreneur. So you’ll chafe at rules here just as I would. However, when you are attempting to undo bad habits and replace them with new ones, some hard-and-fast rules are necessary, temporarily.
Once you fully understand these and have lived with them for a reasonable length of time, then feel free to experiment if you wish. But, get good at coloring inside the lines before ignoring them altogether.
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