Archive for: June, 2023

Is Internet Marketing an Effective Marketing Tool?

Jun 06 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

When we find something new, there is always the tendency for us to get
so caught up in the novelty of it all, the hype, the excitement and
the new experience that we might get a little carried away. Internet
marketing is one of those “new thing” that you might encounter.

There are clear advantages of Internet Marketing as a new medium of
communications. One of the most obvious is the fact that Internet
Marketing can be low cost or “no-cost”. On top of that, its incredible
reach is a clear advantage compared to traditional advertising
methods. The Internet reaches the entire world, not just your
district, your state or your country.

However, it is definitely not the be-all and end-all of marketing. It
does have its fair share of limitations and idiosyncrasies. It is so
easy for us to be lulled into a false sense of wonderment at this new
technology and ascribe to it capabilities that are far beyond reality.

With this in mind, let us explore some of what the capabilities are,
and are not. Of course, the very first point to note is Internet
Marketing is not, be any measure, a replacement of traditional
marketing. If you thought that, perish the thought immediately. At
best, it is but an additional element in your marketing mix, at worse,
it can be a distraction from your real marketing campaign.

The Internet is well capable of levels of interaction never before
possible. Immediately, you can get feedback from your audience through
comments, feedback forms, forums and emails. Internet Marketing that
does not take advantage of this incredible capability totally misses
the mark.

Another allure of Internet Marketing, and one of its main pitfalls, is
the misconception and the unfortunate association with, get-rich-quick
schemes. Marketing, in all its various forms have all gone through
this “phase” in their development. Take for example, Direct Marketing.
In the early days of Direct Marketing, many of these companies have
touted it’s “get-rich-quick” aspects. And many in the mainstream
shunned the medium for a long time. In fact, it was only a short two
decades or so that Direct Marketing has been acknowledged as a viable
and powerful marketing strategy.

Internet Marketing is facing its own test at this time. While there
are many legitimate Internet Marketing programs, there are many times
more dubious programs that tout unproven results and hyped up,
sensationalized achievements.

As marketers, we cannot ignore Internet Marketing. At the same time,
we need to come to grasp with what it really is, and see through the
hype and hoopla to tap the true potential of this powerful, new
medium.

We advocate Internet Marketing to be used as a component in your
marketing strategy. Usually, when you launch a product, a lot of time
and effort are put into the Above The Line (ATL) Advertisements, the
Pricing Model, the Launch Offer, the Channel Stragegies and so on. All
these are valid. Then, a month before launch, the boss says, “Oh,
yeah, and let’s have a web site up for it.”

On the other extreme, over emphasis on Internet Marketing to the
neglect of the other essential elements of a successful marketing
campaign can have an even worse impact on the company and the success (or rather, failure) of the product.

Internet Marketing elements like email marketing, online feedback,
interactive advertisements and so on, should form a key part of the
overall marketing communications plan. They should complement and
enhance your traditional marketing methods.

Internet Marketing is a tool. As much as TV commercials, giant
billboards, bus ads, taxi ads, radio ads and so on are all tools of the
trade for advertising. Promotions, Direct Mail and sales hooks are all
part and parcel of the marketing push. They are all tools in the able
marketer’s arsenal. Internet Marketing can be your best, newest,
shining-est tool. But it is a tool nonetheless and should be used as
such wisely.

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Direct Response Marketing – How a “Break Even” Ad Can Make You Rich

Jun 05 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

When you run an ad and find it breaks even, rather than being discouraged, you should be screaming with joy… provided you know how to exploit such a situation. In the next few paragraphs I’ll explain how you can do exactly that.

Let’s say you’re running a print ad in a publication that has a daily frequency, like a newspaper. Once you’ve established credit with the specific vehicle you wont have to pay for the ad until after it’s published, until after it “breaks.” If the money you take in covers the cost of the fulfilled product and the advertising, you’re at break even. That means your media costs, your product, fulfillment and data entry costs have all been covered. The money you use to pay the media will come from the money you’ve already collected. In essence, your customers paid for the ad… And, that’s basically the way it should be… that’s why you ran the ad to begin with.

Your suppliers will also agree to payment after the ad runs provided you’ve established credit with them as well. If you can get quick tun around (like in some ads where they say allow 30-60 days for delivery), you can do that whole thing without a cent of your own money.

The fact that you didn’t earn a profit is inconsequential.

The same would be true if you ran in a weekly or even a monthly publication.

Some optimistic marketers would then say “Well, I added new names to my database and it really didn’t cost me anything to do that so, I guess I’m OK.”

First… recognize that when you run an ad in a publication or in broadcast the rates you pay are based on volume. If you have an ad that breaks even you can run that ad frequently to increase the volume of advertising you are buying… resulting in a lower cost per insertion. If, then your ad would normally cost $1,000 and by running it three times you get a discount of 5% then you will pay only $950 per insertion. That’s a savings of $50 per insertion. If the ad broke even at $1,000 and you only have to pay $950, you just made $50 every time you placed this “break even” ad. This is done all the time by the major mail order houses, the break even ads are referred to as “rate holders.”

I know of several very successful mail order houses that run rate holders all the time in order to achieve savings of 5%, 10% sometimes 25% or even more… because the increased volume of space earns either frequency or volume discounts with the specific vehicles being used. Look at the rate cards and you’ll see what I mean.

But that’s just the beginning.

If the ad breaks even in one advertising vehicle, think about the number of other advertising vehicles that are similar to the one you proved to result in break even. A newspaper in Denver has audience similarities (demographics) to 50 other newspapers spread out throughout the United States. Make yourself $50 in one paper and multiply that by 50. That’s $2,500 in gains every time you run in those 50 newspapers… which could be monthly, weekly… even daily.

Now let’s take it a step further for the real pay off.

Let’s look at the business model. Your mail order business is a business that defines a market, targets the market and offers a product (or service). That’s the business model. The product (or service) is a variable. Today widgets are the item you are offering… but you may not be offering widgets next week or next year… or… you may continue to offer widgets but also start offering digits… to the same or perhaps to a different market. So the product is the variable.

The constant is you are buying distribution of your ad(s).

If you went through an ad agency the ad would be either discounted to the ad agency in the amount of 15% by the media or your agency agreement would allow the agency to mark up the media buy by 17.65%. Don’t let the variable percentage numbers confuse you… it’s actually the same amount of money. 15% of $100 is $15 bringing the net due the media to $85. If the net rate from the media was $85 and the agency marked it up by 17.65% it would come to the same $100.

To break even you’d have to earn a net of $100 after all media, product and fulfillment costs are covered. If the ad is doing that, if the ad is a break even, then the $15 earned by the agency is covered as well… and you’re still at a break even…

So if you also owned the advertising agency, when you bought the media, the agency would earn that $15… Or 15% of the gross media buy.

Now think about the scenario created.

The mail order company is receiving all the money needed to break even… the ad agency is earning 15% of the media expenditure. So if we went into a monthly magazine group and ran a break even ad every month, 15% of that money would be earned by the ad agency… on an ad that only “breaks even.”

If you bought five magazines each with a similar audience and the total circulation was 10,000,000 and your average cost per thousand was $7… The “gross cost” of buying the media would be $70,000. The money your mail order company needs to pay your agency is $70,000 and your agency (called a “house agency”) is liable to the media for $70,000 less 15% or a net amount of $59,500. Your ad breaks even and your in house advertising agency is earning $10,500 for the transaction.

Do that once a month and your break even ad is earning your house agency $126,000 a year. Plus you’re building your database for future sales and income from list rental.

If your house agency has not established credit with the media (and it only takes a couple of insertions to establish credit) then the up front payment to the media earns an additional discount. For a payment with order the discount is gross less 15% less 2% so on a $70,000 buy that has to be paid with order (and that payment can usually be delayed until you supply the camera ready artwork to the publication, typically two months before the scheduled release date of the issue) the net amount paid by the agency would be $59,500 less 2% or $58,310. The agency, then is earning $11,690 for the example used.

Now couple that with the frequency or volume discount we discussed earlier… let’s say it’s 15% under the open rate (the rate you use to establish your break even). That brings the cost of the ad schedule down to $59,500 and the agency (payment based on 15% discount) earns $8,925 per month.

So now your break even of $70,000 is paid from your orders… you paid the agency $59,500 making a profit for the mail order company in the amount of $10,500 and a profit for the house agency in the amount of $8,925. Since you own both companies, you made $19,425 on money that you didn’t lay out… it was in your hands from the orders generated before any payment had to be made to the media.

And… if you use the same company name in the advertising, the offers can be changed and still achieve the frequency discounts discussed.

So… how do you create an “In House” Agency? The same way you created your initial mail order company… you form a separate corporation. You declare that there is an agency and your mail order company enters into a contract with your agency. The agency issues insertion orders to the media and carries the liability of payment to the media. Your mail order company has payment liability to your agency as it would no matter who the owner of the agency was. The agency remains a constant, your mail order company places ads for the same or other products or services through the agency and your break even ads cry all the way to the bank.

The same is true if you are using direct mail. Your agency will mark up any production charges at the rate of 17.65% and your “in house” list brokerage will go to the source of a list and buy at a discount of 20% and you may be able to negotiate volume discounts on the list too.

If you plan on blasting emails using rented lists, the same discount of 20% should be applicable to your email blasts. Just make sure you’re going to the actual list manager of the list, not through a broker who is not the manager since they will mark up the list costs charged to your in house list brokerage. You can subscribe to SRDS to find the sources of lists… and there is another SRDS subscription you may want to get for print and for broadcast rates.

While it is important to have break even ads, you goal is to try for out and out killer response. Seasonality often creates a variable on response levels achieved. An ad for a tomato plant wont pull as well in November as it would in May or June… so there are times you will not run a break even ad. But if you have gone though the testing and understand the variables applicable to each ad you develop, having an arsenal of break even ads achieves lower costs, causes appreciable profits for your agency and enhances the profits achieved by those high response ads that also often face seasonality variables.

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The Benefits of an Email Marketing Campaign

Jun 04 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

How many times have you checked your emails today? Once, twice, or a number of times? You probably have more than one email address too, one for work and one for personal use. We spend a lot of time checking, reading and responding to emails every day. It has taken over the normal telephone call because it is cheaper and makes it easier to send documents or pictures.

People spend a lot of time on their emails every day so this is a great direct marketing opportunity for businesses.

The Benefits of an Email Marketing Campaign are:

  • The email advert is delivered directly to the customer. The next time your prospect checks their inbox, your advert will be there. They will most likely read it if the subject is interesting and the content is something that they might consider.
  • Your customer will notice the brand, especially if campaign is sent regularly. The key is to send it at regular intervals. Avoid sending it daily because this will increase the chances of the recipients unsubscribing from the database. If you’re sending too frequently and they don’t require your products or services every day, they may opt out at any time. Decide on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly schedule for your email campaigns for the best results.
  • Email campaigns with direct call to action buttons can generate leads quickly. Add direct links to the website and to an email address so that the customer can click on it and be taken to the relevant screen. Specify the call to action such as buy now, shop online, visit website, or contact us. Be clear about what you want the customer to do.
  • The customer can contact you directly by either replying or calling you. Because the email advert is going to their inbox, they can decide to contact you if they are interested. In this case, make sure to structure the design in such a way that it is easy for the customer to find your contact details. Make it large and clear enough for them to notice it the first time.

An email marketing campaign is a great way to generate sales. It is a direct method of marketing that can be quite successful if it is designed and structured well. Also plan how often and which day of the week it will be sent so that it has the most impactful results.

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How to Fuel Your Network Marketing Business With Fresh Information

Jun 03 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

This article is part 2 of 5 in a short series, which has been put together to show you how build massive amounts of leverage into your Network Marketing campaign, regardless of whether you are building your Network Marketing business Online, or using traditional techniques. As any successful Entrepreneur will tell you, the key to achieving financial freedom in any business is by leveraging your personal time and efforts, putting systems or people to work for you.

In this second article you will learn how Network Marketing can enable you to do just that, putting people and systems to work, rather than investing vast sums of money and having that money work for you.

Network Marketing is a business, which is designed to enable you to capitalise on leverage. Firstly, as your team grows you will be paid on the efforts of everyone in your downline and secondly there will generally be tools and systems in place, which you can use to build your business. Network Marketing companies usually provide marketing tools and resources to help you and you should make sure that your upline has a prospecting and sponsoring process, or system that you can employ to build your business.

So, this explains how you can benefit from building a Network Marketing business, but how will your customers and business partners benefit? If you are not sure, or are not able to explain it, then why would anyone even consider partnering you? That might sound harsh, but unfortunately it is also very true!

With this in mind, do you know why companies choose to distribute products through direct sales, rather than using the conventional wholesale / retail route? Do you know why the products are generally a higher quality, as well as better value, and why the company is able to pay Associates a high commission rate on sales? If not, why not? and what can you do about it today to move your business forward?

It is impossible to answer all of these questions in one short article, but I will give you a short overview from the customer’s perspective:

A customer purchasing from a retailer will typically pay 2 to 3 times more for a product than the wholesaler paid the manufacturer for it. Say for example a product costs £10 to manufacture. The wholesaler may then pay £15 for each unit and the retailer probably purchases them for around £20 to £25 from the wholesaler. The retailer will then have to sell the product to the customer for £45, to offset their expenses for rent, staffing, utilities, advertising, etc. and still make a profit. Therefore, the customer pays £45 for a product that the manufacturer actually sells for £15, because everyone in the distribution chain must make a profit on the purchase.

If you buy from a direct sales company then you purchase directly from the manufacturer, or wholesaler. Therefore you will either pay far less for your products, or you will get a much higher quality product for the same amount of money. For proof, just look at how much cheaper companies such as Amazon and Play.com sell products for, compared to the high street shops. Here you are purchasing from the wholesaler, so imagine the additional impact of purchasing directly from the manufacturer!

By purchasing direct, your customers can cut out the middlemen and receive products that represent better value for money. Explain this to your potential customers, so that they can understand the direct sales industry, rather than being sceptical or apprehensive to purchase through you.

In part 3 of this series you will learn a powerful prospecting process for promoting your business using the old-school word-of-mouth marketing tactics. This will enable you to understand how to take your Network Marketing business online in part 4, as well as the benefits of doing so.

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“Directional” (Not Direct) Marketing

Jun 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Those who believe the web is not a direct response medium should think again. A recent study conducted by AdKnowledge and published in their recent “Online Advertising Report” suggests that 60 percent of total website conversions occurs in the first half-hour. In other words, based on the study the bulk of your visitors will likely buy within the first 30 minutes.

While that’s pretty much conventional wisdom, an interesting conclusion one can make is this: You only have thirty minutes to compel visitors to take some kind of action. And similarly, if people do not buy within those precious 30 minutes, the likelihood that they will leave your site, never to return again (even if they bookmarked it), is minuscule at best.

On the other hand however, a previous report also found that “post-impression” conversions (i.e., conversions following multiple impressions of an ad) are slightly higher than those that came as a direct result of clickthroughs. This supports the view that the Internet is also a branding tool. Therefore, if the Internet is a direct marketing medium then how can this be so? The answer can be found in other findings.

The latest report mentioned that post-clickthrough conversion rates were on the rise. Of total conversions, the study also found that 44 percent were repeat conversions. And finally, keyword placements, while they cost more, were found to yield the highest clickthrough rates.

(“Keyword placements” signify keyword-based banner impressions — i.e., banners that appear on portals after specific keywords are searched. For example, if you searched for “music” on Yahoo, a banner for a music- related website will appear on the subsequent results page.)

From these findings, several conclusions emerge:

  1. Websites are becoming better at direct marketing;
  2. Advertising is more effective when targeted;
  3. And people who buy based on brand preference alone do so
    • If they bought in the past and are likely to buy again,
    • Or if the ads were not targeted in the first place.

Essentially, the final conclusion one can make is that direct marketing, coupled with targeted marketing, seem to yield the greatest response. But a site that does not compel visitors to take some kind of action within the first few minutes, or one that does not target its prospects from the onset, will then have to seriously invest in, and rely on, branding efforts in order to encourage an adequate level of sales.

For larger corporations, branding alone is plausible since it requires a significant investment — and risk. But for smaller businesses however, branding is costly and should never be the primary focus. In fact, while branding is important it should only be the byproduct of an effectively implemented, targeted direct marketing strategy. The more qualified your visitors are, and the more compelling your message is, the higher the percentage of website visitors that will buy within those crucial 30 minutes will be. That’s “directional” marketing.

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