We’ve been working on our 4-part series on the 10 Key Elements of Your Marketing. I hope you feel like you’re becoming more and more of the expert you need to be to create effective marketing campaigns.
In case you missed the previous posts, you can read them here:
Now we’re going to focus on: calls-to-action, guarantees, follow-up systems, and repetition.
KEY ELEMENT #6: Include a Call to Action
A call to action tells them exactly what to do, when to do it, and how to do it. It spells it out very clearly what the next action you want them to take is. “Pick up the phone and call our office today” is a very simple call to action. You might say, “Go to our website and fill out the form to claim your free ____”
Sometimes a numbered list of the steps in your call to action can be especially effective because it stands out from the other text and breaks it down into easy steps like:
#1: Decide which _____ you are choosing
#2: Fill out the form in this letter
#3: Return it in the included postage paid envelope
#4: Wait for us to contact you
Working in the call to action with the sense of urgency is a powerful duo. If your prospect is feeling urgent, worried about the scarcity, they want to know what they should do next.
KEY ELEMENT #7: Include a Guarantee
If you are objecting to this element because you don’t want to offer a guarantee, you’d better find a different business.
Having a guarantee takes the risk away from the prospect. Most people do not like take any risk, especially when it comes to receiving solicitation in the mail. This is also true of online solicitations. We all have an inherent distrust of people trying to get our money, so guarantees go a long way to help relieve that distrust. The stronger your guarantee can be, the stronger the response rates will be. The strongest guarantee is always a 100% money back guarantee. Of course, this isn’t always possible – if you are a realtor, you can guarantee money-back for buyers you sell a home to.
What you can do is guarantee various elements of the transaction. Here are some ideas:
- I guarantee I will call you back within 24 hours.
- I guarantee I’ll fix anything that goes wrong for the first year.
- I guarantee I’ll show up with money on your doorstep at the time I make the offer.
- I guarantee I’ll call you back with a smile on my face.
- I guarantee you will have no hassles and the transaction will closely quickly.
- I guarantee you won’t wait more than 10 minutes for your appointment with me.
There are all kinds of things you can do with guarantees to strengthen your offer.
KEY ELEMENT #8: Have a Follow-Up System in Place
All the previous elements dealt with the mail piece itself. But it’s just as critical to have an effective follow-up system in place. Getting a bunch of responses to a mail piece is an complete and utter waste of money if you don’t have a system to follow-up with those leads. This means that when you first get a response, you need to have a way to do something that really gets the attention of the prospect. You might send them a “shock-and-awe” kit. This is a kit is a box or packet of goodies the prospect would never expect to get from anyone in the situation. You might make a personal appearance. A phone call from the president. Anything you can do to tell the prospect you care is a good thing to do.
Beyond the initial contact, you also need to have an ongoing follow-up system in place. An email auto-responder would be effective in this case. But you can also do it with additional Direct Mail pieces. Maybe a quarterly newsletter. Maybe periodic phone calls. Whatever works for your market to ensure that people remember is good.
KEY ELEMENTS #9: Repetition is Everything
Repetition is everything. Repetition is everything. Repetition is everything.
If you think you can do one mail piece or one email campaign and set profit records, you’re dreaming. IN the case of real estate, it’s a fact that about 7% of the population moves every year. There’s probably another 7% thinking about moving in any given time. That’s only about 14% of the people who probably have any interest at all in hearing about selling their home. 14% means 14 out of 100, which means 86 out of 100 are not interested at all right now.
Next year another 7% of people are going to move and probably another 7% will be thinking about it. Just because a prospect isn’t interested this year, does not mean they won’t be interested next year, or next month. Your goal as a marketer is to put your name in front of people often enough so that when it finally comes time for them to act on your offer, they think of you first before they think of your competition.
Here’s a good rule of thumb… Whatever response you get from one mailer, you can at least double the response by doing two additional mail pieces. In other words, if you send the same thing three times to the same list, you’ll typically get double the response you would get over just one mailing.
Another rule of thumb… Direct Mail that works should be mailed again and again until it stops working. It is not uncommon to mail the same offer up to 10 times before it finally gets to the point where it’s no longer profitable to mail.
By hitting your prospects several times during their decision making process, ideally with pieces a little different than your competition, you’ll begin to build a brand with the recipient and they’ll begin to know, like, and trust you. And guess who they want to buy from when they’re ready to buy? Someone they know, like, and trust
So remember: mail, mail, mail, and then mail some more!
Now here’s your homework, because if you don’t use the information I’m giving you, it’s useless. Dedicate yourself to this task just like you did before.
- Create calls-to-action for any of your existing marketing pieces that don’t have them and put a plan in place for having them added as soon as possible
- Write and implement a guarantee if you don’t already have one, make sure the one you have is effective if you do
- Write out a few ways you can create repetition in your marketing – including at least one multi-step campaign you can use in the next three months