A Copywriter’s Rant: When Stupidity Is Punished By Death (You Can Stop Marketing Stupidity Now!)

A number of years ago a long time friend made the comment to me that what he loved about Dungeons and Dragons was that “Players were punished for their stupidity with death”

Generally he was right. He believed life wasn’t like that but I will say that in the marketing world non-response to a promotion makes you feel pretty hollow inside and especially in the early days when you aren’t used to it, it makes you wish you were dead.

Now there is an upside to this direct reward and punishment. You know what works and what doesn’t work.

This means that if you are willing to take a hint then you can test your way to success. However, often times there can be some internal emotional coping required. After all you have probably slaved away at getting to where you are today and the market not responding is very painful.

There is how I would prevent myself from feeling stupid.

Stupidity Preventer #1 Be set up to test

Testing is the cure. If you have two different test panels set up one will perform at a different level to the other. This all but guarantees that you will have one control. Your marketing isn’t win lose. It is set up for gradual improvement. ‘A’ beat ‘B’ that means that now I have to find ways to make ‘A’ better while at the same time coming up with ‘C’ in order to beat ‘A.’

This gradual improvement is life changing because every improvement made gets locked in and there will be future payoffs. It’s an amazingly good feeling to see it happening.

Stupidity Preventer #2 Bring in fresh eyes.

Fresh eyes are pivotal to avoiding doing stupid things. That is why I am in a mastermind group. I’ve had them shoot down some of my stupid ideas point blank. It has saved me money and more importantly it has saved me time. Time is the most precious resource in the world and we don’t have time to be making stupid mistakes.

I work with clients at a project’s inception in order to help them to avoid making stupid mistakes. It’s one of the big dangers of being a copywriter. A client thinks they know what they need and they order their copy like they are ordering their pizza.

Then low and behold, despite the copy being okay, good or even great, they don’t get the results that they want. Copy doesn’t operate in a vacuum. It operates as part of a marketing system. Fresh eyes on all aspects of marketing is vital to avoiding stupid mistakes.

Direct Sellers: Street Credentials Mean Something

Direct selling has been around for a very long time – the reason for this is the fact that direct sellers use word of mouth to promote their products and get sales, and most marketers know that word of mouth marketing continues to be one of the best ways to market a product or service.

Nowadays, direct sellers can utilize a lot of resources in getting prospects, generating leads, and increasing their sales. Social media is one of those resources, as it’s an excellent way to do some market research, engage with prospective customers, and participate in discussions.

It’s not a good idea to just jump into social media without knowing exactly what to do, however. Even if you’ve been using Facebook or Twitter for years now, using social media for your direct selling business is still very different from interacting with your friends on Facebook or tweeting personal stuff on Twitter. There’s more to it than that.

If you really want to be successful in using social media for your business, consulting with an expert would be very helpful. This is someone who can really guide you step-by-step through the process so you don’t end up floundering along and uncertain of what you’re doing.

The problem nowadays is the fact that so many people call themselves “experts” or “gurus” without really being one. There’s a huge difference between a true expert and someone who just calls themselves that.
So how do you find the real expert? How do you differentiate between someone who really knows what they’re doing and someone who’s all talk?

1. Knowledge

For someone to position themselves an “expert” in their field means that they have excellent working knowledge of the industry and the work required of it. They should be knowledgeable enough to be able to explain to someone who’s not involved in the industry – if they frequently use jargon and other industry terms, they may be just spouting off and trying to sound knowledgeable even if they aren’t.

Also, they should know the limits of their knowledge – if they don’t know something, they should willingly admit it. But typically, even if they don’t exactly know something, they know a way to get the information for you.

2. Experience

Experience is also a critical factor. You cannot call yourself an expert without having prior experience in your particular niche or industry. A true expert would have working experience on the field, and can give you evidence of their performance. For example, a social media expert should be able to give you the results of what they did for a business – you should clearly see an improvement in how the business is doing. Otherwise, if they cannot show you any results, then they really shouldn’t call themselves experts.

3. Problem Solver

A real expert isn’t one who will panic when problems arise. They should be able to stay calm and figure out how to solve the problem in a rational manner. They’re the go-to person for any problems encountered. They should be able to make quick decisions based on their knowledge and experience, and guide you in the right direction.

4. Commitment

A true expert is one who is committed to the work they do and continues to learn whatever they can about their field of interest. They aren’t simply stagnant about their knowledge, but they are continually enthusiastic about learning more about their niche. They aren’t forced into doing what they do – they are simply passionate and committed about it.

5. Networking

A real expert is someone who knows how to network with their peers and knows the value of connections. After all, they wouldn’t be experts if no one acknowledges their knowledge and experience on a particular niche.

6. Authentic

Experts are authentic people. They don’t need to scam you in order to sell their services. They practice what they preach, and they’re confident in their abilities. They don’t have to push their expertise on people, because people are already approaching them to learn more.

As a direct seller, make sure that you approach a true expert, not someone who just claims to be an expert but doesn’t have the street credentials to prove it. This is someone who’s willing to take you by the hand and show you what they know without having to make up stories. Don’t fall for just anyone who puts guru or expert at the end of their title. Find the real expert who can really deliver.

How to Implement Offline Direct Mail Marketing Campaign For Lead Generation & Direct Response Sales

A large portion of offline direct mail marketing campaign successes largely depends in the preparation of your offer. You must spend time planning your direct mail marketing campaign otherwise it could be a very expensive mistake . Here are a few things you can do to help you ensure your direct mail, offline marketing campaigns win every time.

Steps for creating an offline direct mail marketing campaign:

To start, define your expected outcomes and objectives. What kind of response are you expecting and what did you base your estimated conversions on? Then you need to determine your budget, resources and time lines. Next decide what type of direct mail marketing campaign will be most effective for your product or service.

Here are some suggestions for offline – online direct mail marketing pieces:

  • Post Cards: postcards are a form of direct mail, but it warrants its own category. Postcards are cheaper to produce and mail than full blown direct mail packages or sales letters, and they are great for generating leads.
  • Classified Ads: This is something everyone should be testing in one form or another. It’s great for lead generations. You should still have a strong benefit-driven headline and a clear call to action. Free reports work very well with classifieds.
  • TV and Radio Markets are hotter than ever: National TV and radio spots may be too expensive for you…but there are TONS of local spots waiting to get filled for incredibly cheap prices!
  • Dimensional Mailers: Samples, CD’s and more…
  • Newspaper ads: You can have catchy and bold advertisements printed in newspapers and magazines. Writing just the name of the website can create the desired curiosity to find out more about you.

Each direct marketing piece is used for different purposes and offers. Choose the option that best suits your needs (price, layout, effectiveness, etc). Next you will need to find a mailing list. How you will mail it. How to track your leads also follow up with your leads and convert them to buyers.

Last step of your offline direct response marketing campaign

The most critical step to your successful direct mail marketing is your follow up. This is where most people drop the ball. It is quite easy to do but it requires some preparation. Stay tune for future posts on offline direct marketing follow up tactics.