I stumbled on a new tool today that should help anyone in the business of direct mail marketing (sending postcards and flyers to generate business).
As always, the biggest issue with this kind of marketing is putting together a reliable mailing list. For that, I recommend CompactLists.com. Their search tools allow you to break down a mailing list by radius, demographics, even drive-time to a specific location!
I’ve been using them to create targeted consumer mailing lists. There’s not a lot of competition in this area, but I think these guys have it pretty well put together. Check them out when you get a chance.
Metrics are an extremely important part of converting customers to sales. If you run a web site, it’s important that you’re looking at your web site statistics like overall traffic to you site.
But what about traffic from individual links? What if I want to track the effectiveness of a link placed above the fold, or on the right side of the page separate from everything else?
Those are the questions I was asking when I found this link tracking service. It’s free (which is always nice) and allows me to track links on an link-by-link basis. Some of the metrics included for the clicks are timestamp, referrer (where it came from), IP address, and keywords (if it came from a search engine).
You put a link to your website at the bottom of all your emails, right? If you don’t you should – it’s free publicity.
Anywho, wouldn’t it be nice to know who’s checking you out from your emails? Use a link tracker like this one to let you know anytime someone goes to your website via your email link.
Here’s how to do it: Sample Email Signature
Someone sent this video tutorial to me the other day, and it’s not bad. Some of the techniques the narrator describes are tedious, but worthwhile. I think he leans a little more toward the game theory of search engine marketing as opposed to the larger picture, but that’s OK.
I’m actually a lot more interested in the tool he seems to be using.
Here’s the video
From the business.gov web site:
Online Advertising Law
An old cartoon in the New Yorker showed two dogs in front of a computer, and had the caption “On the Internet, Nobody Knows You’re a Dog.” The inherent anonymity of the Internet has fostered a number of shady advertising and marketing practices, such as unsolicited e-mail spam. Over the past decade, federal and state governments have passed additional advertising laws that protect consumer privacy and ensure fair and truthful advertising practices online. If you plan to advertise online — whether you’re buying ads on search engines or direct marketing through e-mail — you’ll need to understand some basic rules.
- Advertising and Marketing on the Internet : Rules of the Road
Discusses the applicability of federal advertising laws to Internet advertising and marketing.
- Dot Com Disclosures : Information about Online Advertising
This fact sheet describes information businesses should consider as they develop online ads to ensure that they comply with the law.
- CAN-SPAM Act : Requirements for Businesses
The CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 (Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act) establishes requirements for those who send commercial email, spells out penalties for spammers and companies whose products are advertised in spam if they violate the law, and gives consumers the right to ask emailers to stop spamming them. Commercial e-mail messages must include notice that the message is an advertisement or solicitation, an opt-out notice, and a valid postal address of the sender. CAN-SPAM also prohibits falsification of transmission information and deceptive subject headings. The Act creates criminal prohibitions against those who knowingly transmit spam through others’ computers without authorization. Also, the Federal Trade Commission may pursue individuals who knowingly hire others to send deceptive spam.
- “Remove Me” Responses and Responsibilities
Claims that you make in any advertisement for your products or services, including those sent by email, must be truthful. This means that you must honor any promises you make to remove consumers from email mailing lists
Some choice bits on marketing from the SBA web site.
100+ Marketing Ideas
Marketing is all about satisfying customer needs. The following represents a comprehensive list of marketing ideas; use it to help better understand customer needs and ways to satisfy those needs.
- Never let a day pass without engaging in at least one marketing activity.
- Produce separate business cards/sales literature for each of your target market segments (e.g. government and commercial and/or business and consumer).
- Include testimonials from customers in your literature.
- Code your ads and keep records of results.
- Write a How To pamphlet or article for publishing.
- Start every day with two cold calls.
That’s enough copy and paste from me. Read the whole article on their website. Do take note of the publish date of 4/97.
“Relentless Determination!” You must REPEAT THIS OVER, AND OVER AND OVER TO SUCCEED in today’s business climate. Whether you are in a start-up phase, 5 years into your business, or more… without it, you’ll die! You MUST have it! Further, another quote to go along with this is short, simple and right to the point, STAY Relentless! You must go over, around, or through the obstacle in front of you to succeed. As I like to say, if at first I knock on the door of a new prospect, or face a new problem and don’t succeed , then I MUST go over it, around it, under it… or if all else fails, BLOW IT UP!
The Shortest Rule in Sales is just 4 words: “SHUT UP AND LISTEN!” Often we show up to a new prospects office or make a call to a new customer and verbally throw up on them! When in reality, IF WE HAD JUST kept our mouths shut and LISTENED, we would have let THEM make the sale themselves! EVERYONE wants to be heard right? Every wants someone to listen to them right? When you go to that new prospects office, or take or make that phone call to a new customer you must remember they are human… and often they want someone or anyone to hear them out! Because, their girlfriend or wife doesn’t listen to them, their boss won’t listen to them, their kids for sure don’t listen to them… and now you come along with your new service or widget to sell them and you TOO won’t listen to them! So, REMEMBER, TRY TO be quiet when the prospect or new customer starts talking… EVEN IF THEY TALK ON AND ON… let them talk. By doing this, YOU gain and create a BOND that no other rep/vendor/distributor [or whatever you are] has with them. Ultimately, they will tell YOU why THEY want and need your new product or service!
The 10 most powerful 2 letter words: “IF IT IS TO BE, IT IS UP TO ME!” I learned this nearly 10 years ago from Jim McIngvale aka “Mattress Mac”, the owner and founder of, Gallery Furniture in Houston, Texas… just a little ole store that did $150 MILLION in annual sales last year… let me repeat that, 150 Million dollars! This was his MOTTO!