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Unread 20th September 2012, 08:42 AM   #1
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Default Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Hey all,

I just had some random ponderings I thought may help you out.

First on the docket is Bob and money. If you have interest in
making money from local businesses, his '9x12' is a great concept.

Selling ad space on an oversized postcard is not that hard to do...
but you do need to put effort into it, as well as not be limited in
to how you can use this concept.

I recently sold seven 1/4 page spaces on a flyer (one space I used
as the branding for the piece and attention grabber). I sold each spot
@ $150. I designed each ad myself (using Word, nothing fancy).

It cost $254 to have 5000 flyers printed (gotprint.com). $68 for shipping
and I paid $100 to have them distributed. Leaving me $730.

Now, I realize that I create ads for a living so that part will not be that
easy for most of you... but it is NOT that hard either.

Pros:
  • Inexpensive (and you get paid FIRST, so no out-of-pocket for you)
  • Re-occurring revenue. Most businesses will continue to place the ad
  • It's easier to sell anything 'done for you'... more so if it 'makes them money'
  • Easy/free prospecting. EVERY business I got I found on craigslist
  • Quantifiable: You can have several postcard/flyer campaigns at once
Cons:
  • You'll need to create an email to get their interest (without sounding spammy)
  • You will need to design the ads (or pay to have them done)
  • You have to keep in contact with your clients (to keep them coming back)
I can't get into detail about a lot of what I do because this thread would be as
long as the Lord of the Rings trilogy...

Now we commence into the key fundamental of having any kind of success...

Passion

The more you think about money or your current situation, you tend to lose
site of what you are trying to really do. You my friend can be a powerful
force in our economy.

Not by how much you make, but by helping many others make more. The
more you can help a business grow, the more jobs and commerce is
created. Your ads, mobile sites, SEO or whatever the hell it is you sell
has one singular purpose...

To help another

Nobody is passionate about money as obtaining it has no intrinsic value for
your soul. Yet a musician, artist, dancer, martial artist, teacher or a consultant
allows their passion to flow onto others.

I may seem a little over-sensitive at the moment, and I am. Recently I lost
my mother and it is amazing how certain things gain clarity.

I have a natural raw talent for marketing and advertising, but I always thought
about it from a 'how can I make more money'. Because of recent events I
have soul searched and realized there has to be more to life than chasing
the dollar.

Lately I'm starting to feel an excitement when I'm creating ads or marketing.
I get a chance to help someone achieve something better with every project.

Don't just love what you do. Immerse yourself in the warm glow of how what
you do is bettering someone else.

Not only will you be happier, you'll be better at doing your job.

I wish you success


Paul

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Unread 20th September 2012, 09:59 AM   #2
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great post paul. i struggle with the idea of chasing the almighty dollar, but recently have just stopped and helped a few people along without a thought of making a quick buck off them. which i could have done.

I'm thinking this approach may not make me a millionaire, but may keep me from becoming so wrapped up in chasing money that i forget to enjoy life.

sorry about your loss and again thanks for the reminder.


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Unread 20th September 2012, 10:26 AM   #3
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Great post,


I have personally used Bob's 9x12 method MANY times. It works. Businesses are hungry to get their brand in front of more people and the 9x12 method is a great way to go. The way I explain the benefits of the card is simple.

"Mr/s business owner, I have a tremendous opportunity for you to get your brand/ad/coupon out to 10000-20000 homes. These homes are targeted based on area, income, and age of homes (most of mine are for the housing sector, remodel, roofing, and such) and this allows me to send your piece to homes that not only can afford it, but *should* be needing it about now. For only 8-15 cents per household (I charge $800 for 10k homes and $1500 for 20k) you can have huge exposure and people will know how to get to you."


P.S. I only use one business per specific industry on the card at a time. ie. 1 roofer, 1 re modeler etc.

I do this for 3 cities every quarter and it makes me a pretty decent extra income.

I also explain that while proper SEO can get a website to the top, there is still a natural pause when converting or even having others view it. With the 9x12 ad card it is in front of thousands of people immediately.
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Unread 20th September 2012, 11:02 AM   #4
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

awesome post indeed..

helping others makes Heart more happy than making $$$.
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Unread 20th September 2012, 11:21 AM   #5
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

great post and I'm honored to be mentioned in it. I'm always glad to hear that people are providing local businesses with such good marketing value, and that you guys are making a nice profit in return!

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Unread 20th September 2012, 12:18 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

That's awesome!

How many ads are you placing on each card, 16?
If so, that's some nice coin you're pulling in each quarter.

Also, are you placing any type of discounts or deals for your advertisers?
What are some examples if you are?

Thanks for the share.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprks79 View Post
Great post,


I have personally used Bob's 9x12 method MANY times. It works. Businesses are hungry to get their brand in front of more people and the 9x12 method is a great way to go. The way I explain the benefits of the card is simple.

"Mr/s business owner, I have a tremendous opportunity for you to get your brand/ad/coupon out to 10000-20000 homes. These homes are targeted based on area, income, and age of homes (most of mine are for the housing sector, remodel, roofing, and such) and this allows me to send your piece to homes that not only can afford it, but *should* be needing it about now. For only 8-15 cents per household (I charge $800 for 10k homes and $1500 for 20k) you can have huge exposure and people will know how to get to you."


P.S. I only use one business per specific industry on the card at a time. ie. 1 roofer, 1 re modeler etc.

I do this for 3 cities every quarter and it makes me a pretty decent extra income.

I also explain that while proper SEO can get a website to the top, there is still a natural pause when converting or even having others view it. With the 9x12 ad card it is in front of thousands of people immediately.
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Unread 20th September 2012, 12:48 PM   #7
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Bob's method definitely works.

Its all in the execution that matters. Start collecting valpak, supercoups, community mailers, and you'll have a list of business owners who have ALREADY spent $ on mail marketing.

I would contact them by walkins or email. Both work. Like I said, its the execution that matters. I got innovative with my walkins and would go in with the businesses ad from valpak. Later on I started to "grade" their ads on paper.

I'd walk in and criticize their copy in a nice way,

"Hello, I noticed you advertised in valpak last month and I have a few questions to ask about your experience. First, I noticed your ad was not targeted well... and the copy is confusing to read. There are no benefits listed, no testimonies, your company name is taking up too much room etc etc".

I would grab their attention FIRST by pretending to know a lot about ad copy. Although the truth is I didn't know much of anything back then. Just the extreme basics.

It still worked fairly well. Because I'd start by building value around their ad. I'd talk about how their ROI had lots of room for improvement. THEN I'd build value on the POSTCARD system.

"Did you know valpak only has a 2% exposure rate?"
"Did you know they advertise your competitors and we don't?"
"Did you know our exposure rate is 100%?"
"We also don't advertise any branded dealerships etc etc"
The list is endless..

You can build IMMENSE value with this system when you execute things the right way. I'm not telling anyone how they should sell their postcards, all I know is this worked great for me.

Eventually I moved over to other advertising mediums. But as far as postcards they definitely work if you sell them the right way. There is no doubt about that.

-Red
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Unread 20th September 2012, 03:15 PM   #8
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprks79 View Post
Great post,


I have personally used Bob's 9x12 method MANY times. It works. Businesses are hungry to get their brand in front of more people and the 9x12 method is a great way to go. The way I explain the benefits of the card is simple.

"Mr/s business owner, I have a tremendous opportunity for you to get your brand/ad/coupon out to 10000-20000 homes. These homes are targeted based on area, income, and age of homes (most of mine are for the housing sector, remodel, roofing, and such) and this allows me to send your piece to homes that not only can afford it, but *should* be needing it about now. For only 8-15 cents per household (I charge $800 for 10k homes and $1500 for 20k) you can have huge exposure and people will know how to get to you."


P.S. I only use one business per specific industry on the card at a time. ie. 1 roofer, 1 re modeler etc.

I do this for 3 cities every quarter and it makes me a pretty decent extra income.

I also explain that while proper SEO can get a website to the top, there is still a natural pause when converting or even having others view it. With the 9x12 ad card it is in front of thousands of people immediately.
Nice work! I've been planing to do "trades only" card for a while, so your post caught attention :-)

When you say that the card is targeted by are, income and age, are you still using EDDM program, where you have to send to every household in a given mailing route? I assume you'd be using a targeted mail instead, or do some real research on which EDDM routes would fall into your desired group and use those routes only. Thanks in advance!

Thomas
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Unread 20th September 2012, 05:51 PM   #9
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

I do 16 ads each card, 8 front, 8 back. I have toyed with less, for example having "special" clients on the front with a 1/4 ad, for an added price of course, and then having the back be the 8 "normal" size. I have since gone to just 8/8.

I do give returning customers a discount, generally 10%-15% depending on how many times they have ran ads with me.



Quote:
Originally Posted by xichabodx View Post
That's awesome!

How many ads are you placing on each card, 16?
If so, that's some nice coin you're pulling in each quarter.

Also, are you placing any type of discounts or deals for your advertisers?
What are some examples if you are?

Thanks for the share.
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Unread 20th September 2012, 05:56 PM   #10
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

I still use the EDDM system, I just do super duper targeting. All of the info is freely and readily available. I start by looking for homes in my income range target, then from there do a separate research for homes 15+ years old. Then I do another separate search for areas with a concentration of the parameters. Combine the research and only use the ones that show up on all 3 lists. Then I just choose the routes that match. Takes me some time but I start getting more clients about a month after the card mails, that way I have plenty of time to do the needed research.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SirThomas View Post
Nice work! I've been planing to do "trades only" card for a while, so your post caught attention :-)

When you say that the card is targeted by are, income and age, are you still using EDDM program, where you have to send to every household in a given mailing route? I assume you'd be using a targeted mail instead, or do some real research on which EDDM routes would fall into your desired group and use those routes only. Thanks in advance!

Thomas
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Unread 20th September 2012, 06:49 PM   #11
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprks79 View Post
I do 16 ads each card, 8 front, 8 back. I have toyed with less, for example having "special" clients on the front with a 1/4 ad, for an added price of course, and then having the back be the 8 "normal" size. I have since gone to just 8/8.

I do give returning customers a discount, generally 10%-15% depending on how many times they have ran ads with me.
Sounds like a plan.

As far as a discount, I was meaning are your clients offering any in their ads?
What are some examples of offers they're using?
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Unread 20th September 2012, 07:29 PM   #12
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Ohh, gotcha, misunderstood,

Some do offer discounts, 10% off a new roof, 15% off siding or remodeling. But to be completely honest, they could discount by a huge margin and still make tons of money. Most dont offer any discount the first run, I do however talk them into one on the second just to see the difference in conversions.


Quote:
Originally Posted by xichabodx View Post
Sounds like a plan.

As far as a discount, I was meaning are your clients offering any in their ads?
What are some examples of offers they're using?
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Unread 20th September 2012, 07:57 PM   #13
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by sprks79 View Post
Some do offer discounts, 10% off a new roof, 15% off siding or remodeling. But to be completely honest, they could discount by a huge margin and still make tons of money. Most dont offer any discount the first run, I do however talk them into one on the second just to see the difference in conversions.
I will not even run an ad without an offer. The response rate very likely will
be zero without a premium of some kind. Plus we want responses ASAP
so we can track the results. No offer = no rush, and no real reason to
call the business at all.

If the business gets no calls it is our fault, of course.

I help the business understand ROI as well as lifetime value of a customer
(most forget about that).

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Unread 20th September 2012, 10:22 PM   #14
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

When I approach potential advertisers for my 9x12 card I always STRONGLY suggest that the client use a great offer. I generally use the same technique as mentioned above, selling them on ROI and lifetime value of a customer.
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Unread 20th September 2012, 11:39 PM   #15
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Has anyone made this work in Canada? My initial research was that postage would eat all the profits, even using EDDM's Canadian cousin.
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Unread 21st September 2012, 05:34 AM   #16
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
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Has anyone made this work in Canada? My initial research was that postage would eat all the profits, even using EDDM's Canadian cousin.
All you do is adjust what you charge for the ad space.

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Unread 21st September 2012, 09:03 AM   #17
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
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great post and I'm honored to be mentioned in it.

Shucks Bob, I like your old school style. You 'get it'

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Unread 21st September 2012, 01:15 PM   #18
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Hey Irish...
How did you get them distributed for $100

I looked at EDDM and its $725

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Unread 21st September 2012, 01:18 PM   #19
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Quote:
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Hey Irish...
How did you get them distributed for $100

I looked at EDDM and its $725
These were flyers, not mailed. I hired someone off
craigslist to pass them out.

Worked out well

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Unread 21st September 2012, 01:57 PM   #20
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

So, you created flyers instead of postcards then hired someone to deliver them instead of mail them???

Interesting... have you noticed the same level of response? (As opposed to a postcard)

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Unread 24th September 2012, 11:24 AM   #21
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Great post. I am also doing my first postcard.

My question for you is how to get a list of homes age? Can I get from InfoFree?


Quote:
Originally Posted by sprks79 View Post
Great post,


I have personally used Bob's 9x12 method MANY times. It works. Businesses are hungry to get their brand in front of more people and the 9x12 method is a great way to go. The way I explain the benefits of the card is simple.

"Mr/s business owner, I have a tremendous opportunity for you to get your brand/ad/coupon out to 10000-20000 homes. These homes are targeted based on area, income, and age of homes (most of mine are for the housing sector, remodel, roofing, and such) and this allows me to send your piece to homes that not only can afford it, but *should* be needing it about now. For only 8-15 cents per household (I charge $800 for 10k homes and $1500 for 20k) you can have huge exposure and people will know how to get to you."


P.S. I only use one business per specific industry on the card at a time. ie. 1 roofer, 1 re modeler etc.

I do this for 3 cities every quarter and it makes me a pretty decent extra income.

I also explain that while proper SEO can get a website to the top, there is still a natural pause when converting or even having others view it. With the 9x12 ad card it is in front of thousands of people immediately.
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Unread 24th September 2012, 12:15 PM   #22
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Default Re: Bob Ross, making money and some soul

Some cities actually keep this info. Based on subdivision starting, you can also get this info from most real estate agents, I have a family member who is one, and they have databases that can filter through by age and you just use the EDDM postal route to see the full route.



Quote:
Originally Posted by David B. View Post
Great post. I am also doing my first postcard.

My question for you is how to get a list of homes age? Can I get from InfoFree?
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