Direct Marketing Mastery: The Link Between Profits and Success! (It’s Stronger Than You Might Think)

“Good Marketing can’t overcome bad math.”

Dan Kennedy.

Good marketing is all about getting better response rates, but if your math isn’t good then you’ll go broke.

Now, math basically means profits. If you make $1,000 when you put a bum in a seat at a seminar it had better not cost you $2,000 to do it.

That is really bad math. It can be fixed. Find higher priced options to sell to them at the seminar, get sponsorship – you can change the math more readily than you can change the response rate.

The better your math the more you can spend to get a customer and the more you can make from a given transaction.

Assuming the percentage margin is the same, do you think you’ll make more selling the $50 product or the $100 product?

The close rate isn’t; going to be that different when you actually know how to sell. And that is often the catch – the businesses relying on being the cheapest are the ones who don’t know how to really sell. In fact the additional profits allow for more sophisticated selling and they allow for more sales effort on the back of this you may very well sell more of the $100 than the $50.

You need to be able to sell value and show that the extra investment is worth it. I’ve got a client who sells hosting and support for enterprise software applications. I can tell you right now that he is at least double the price of the ‘cheapest on the market.’

Now in lieu of differentiation, every buyer will resort to comparing price and buying the cheapest. We’ve worked very hard to explain why his solution is better and is actually a steal in terms of the additional value he provides. We can probably raise his prices further on the back of this.

However, most people act as if their math is fixed. NEVER assume this. Because it means you are now consigned to the better marketing camp. Personally, I would rather have terrible response rates and awesome math than great response rates and terrible math. I’d take a $15,000 cost of sale on a 80% margin in a $100,000 product – even if it was happening at a 1/1,000 response rate.

7 Tips For Successful Catalog Marketing

The catalog can be a great sales and marketing tool for your organization. It has the ability to list and showcase many of your hottest products, and may have room left over for short articles or a brief company history. Before you head to the catalog printing phase, you should have a catalog marketing strategy.

Here are some catalog marketing tips that will prepare you to achieve your marketing goals.

1.) Get your catalogs into the right hands

Since catalogs are a more expensive endeavor than other forms of print advertising, it is important to give your catalogs to a market that wants to buy your products or services. Your catalog mailing list should be streamlined to weed out recipients who are unlikely to make a purchase. When you are selling to a niche market (such as bird watchers), it is even more important to match the catalog with the average niche recipient.

2.) Include the most popular products

Since each catalog is a product showcase that may be viewed by multiple people, it is important to focus on popular products or new products that your marketing team predicts will be hot sellers. The exception to this rule is when you want to sell off unpopular inventory that is gathering dust at the warehouse. In that case, you may want to heavily discount the merchandise and list it in the catalog.

3.) Use multiple calls to action

A catalog typically has enough space for plenty of calls to action. There might be order forms along with invites to visit the website and shop there. A call to action to visit the retail location can also be a good idea. Some people use catalogs to look at the products and learn about them, but they use a non-catalog method to make a purchase.

4.) Include customer testimonials

If you have the extra space available, including customer testimonials prior to catalog printing is a great way to show potential customers that your company deserves loyalty. Select testimonials that are not too boring and yet not so wild that the focus is lost.

5.) Give the best offers

Catalog recipients should have the best offers that are possible. An accepted special offer on one product may entice the buyer to add one or more non-discounted purchases. Offering free shipping for a minimum purchase amount is an excellent method to stimulate purchase behavior.

6.) Collect marketing data

It’s a good idea to study past catalog efforts of your company and make conclusions based on that data that can help for the next catalog issue. Be certain to adjust for new factors such as economic conditions and changes in customer preference.

7.) Test catalogs against each other

It can be a wise strategy to send out two versions of the same catalog if you are uncertain about a particular design choice, such as whether to include an order form and which products to use. Based on the responses from each catalog, you can tell which design is more popular.

Direct Marketing and SEO

Direct marketing and SEO work well together when used in conjunction with each other. Direct marketing is all about generating a desired response to a certain stimulus. SEO is all about getting the greatest number of people to a website to see if particular offer is appealing to them. It is fairly obvious why these two things work well together. If you are getting traffic to a website then you generally want those people to convert into buyers. However, what most people get wrong is that people mistakenly believe that they should convert everyone who comes to their website.

Direct response marketing is all about getting a response to a stimulus. However, what most people do not realize is that direct response marketing is also about repelling people who do not fit the unique selling proposition of that particular business. Many people go to direct response marketing because it is far more effective than regular marketing. There is also instant gratification tied to direct response marketing because this type of advertising generates a result. It also happens to be faster than regular advertising and it is also trackable. Most of the problem with marketing is that there are no hard and fast numbers when presented to the business owner by many advertising sales people. Many of the advertising salespeople that exist do not understand what it takes to run a business therefore; they cannot give right metrics on how a campaign will perform when in use. Direct response marketing does that for a person.

Therefore, SEO along with direct response advertising works well together. You drive traffic through search engine optimized funnels and then you track the effectiveness of those campaigns using direct response tactics. This gives you the best idea of the marketplace you are working in as well as marketing intelligence that will help you convert those people in the funnel into buyers.

However, if a business needs to do this much quicker they can always use pay per click advertising. This would be more like a direct mail as there is a cost associated in the game. The trick to the system is to optimize the amount of returns based on the money that is spent on marketing. Therefore, the return on investment is much higher in search engine optimization because it tends to be cheaper. There is a very low amount of money that needs to be spent (generally speaking) than with a pay per click campaign. That is why a small business should use search engine optimization hand in hand with direct marketing principles. It is a very low cost activity that can produce big results.

In closing, businesses should use search engine optimization with direct marketing approaches. This will give them the best chance of generating traffic and converting those people into buyers. It also gives the business marketing intelligence about who exist in the marketplace and what words they are using to access the information that they want. This means that a company can build a marketing campaign around those keywords and get more of those people who actually buy their products and services. Therefore, direct marketing principles with strong SEO always do well in the marketplace as long as the business owner or the marketer knows what they are doing with these particular tools.