Critique my $700.00 postcard

by alanj
31 replies
Any tips or advice for improvement on my postcard before it goes to print, or is it going to get me inundated with enquiries as it is ?
#critique #postcard
  • Profile picture of the author roger h
    Resolution.. cant see the kitchen clearly. Your Ad focus is Kitchen but the image used doesnt re-inforce the message or questions posed.

    Not saying i could better, its just what i see.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      I would say the ad looks good.. ( like the fact you used a brunette! - statistically sells better ) the focus of the piece is NOT the kitchen but the one in 6 reasons you a "Lady" would want to update theirs.

      Originally Posted by roger h View Post

      Resolution.. cant see the kitchen clearly. Your Ad focus is Kitchen but the image used doesnt re-inforce the message or questions posed.

      Not saying i could better, its just what i see.
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      • Profile picture of the author roger h
        Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

        I would say the ad looks good.. ( like the fact you used a brunette! - statistically sells better ) the focus of the piece is NOT the kitchen but the one in 6 reasons you a "Lady" would want to update theirs.

        Ok, perhaps i mistook Focus for something else, not saying i did just saying 'perhaps'. After all, im constantly learning & re-learning from you Savidge4, Oziboomer, Ewen Mack, Peter Lessard et al.

        So a question further...

        If the Intent of this Ad is to sell Kitchen Upgrades, surely a prospect would benefit from seeing an image that demonstrates what they could have in place of what they have now ?
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by roger h View Post

          Ok, perhaps i mistook Focus for something else, not saying i did just saying 'perhaps'. After all, im constantly learning & re-learning from you Savidge4, Oziboomer, Ewen Mack, Peter Lessard et al.

          So a question further...

          If the Intent of this Ad is to sell Kitchen Upgrades, surely a prospect would benefit from seeing an image that demonstrates what they could have in place of what they have now ?
          And here is where it gets interesting. I like modern kitchens.. My mother in law likes traditional. My neighbor likes French country. An image speaks a thousand words... and by displaying an actual kitchen.. you are speaking those 1000 words to one of us and not all 3!
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          • Profile picture of the author roger h
            Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

            And here is where it gets interesting. I like modern kitchens.. My mother in law likes traditional. My neighbor likes French country. An image speaks a thousand words... and by displaying an actual kitchen.. you are speaking those 1000 words to one of us and not all 3!
            Ok, i see how that is interesting now at least from the point of view of what kitchen type image to display,

            And, of course its a ridiculous notion to have more than one 'sample' image on a postcard size promotion, there's just not enough room or scale. For me, i just didnt and still dont feel that the Brunette image is selling the notion, selling the idea of Kitchen Improvements. That image is selling the stereotype of a woman being in the Kitchen, but there is no clear sign at all of a working kitchen (or 'not-working' for that matter) on that Postcard Ad.

            For me, there has to be one, clearly visible, selling not only the 'Kitchen Angle' but also the Quality offered.

            (I do however understand completely the Brunette statistical adavntage)
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            • Profile picture of the author savidge4
              Originally Posted by roger h View Post

              For me, there has to be one, clearly visible, selling not only the 'Kitchen Angle' but also the Quality offered.

              (I do however understand completely the Brunette statistical adavntage)
              But lets really look at what this image is doing.. and I will probably say that to the OP this was probably coincidence and not intentional. There is no question the young lady is sitting in the kitchen. That kitchen is so big she can lay down her full 15"+ laptop on the counter AND a plate of food and a glass of juice. - let alone drop your 3 little mangy kids up there to feed them a quick after school snack.

              Another aspect of the image is the dichotomy of the image and your average women's reality in the kitchen. ( I am only saying "woman's" here not to be sexist, but to express the impressions of the ad - actually at my house the kitchen is MY domain ) Any women with as much as 1 child.. could only dream of having that moment in the kitchen.

              The 3rd aspect of the image that is working is the eyes.. they are looking at the "List" drawing the readers eyes in an actual reverse intuitive pattern ( right to left ) which is a bit of a hiccup with this ad. I would have flipped it, and I believe that Ewens original ad was the reverse as well. - but regardless of that the eyes are pointing to the "List" this is in itself a bit of a call to action.. this is the end user pre-qualifying themselves to the issues of their kitchen and the need to correct it.. and who do they call?

              Sometimes with images its not so much what is there.. but in contrast.. what isn't there. and often times what isnt there is far more important than what is- and I would argue this is one of those cases.
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  • I like it.

    Similar copy has worked extremely well for others.

    It's got a far greater chance of success than your previous card, which I think you posted a few months ago.


    To me it's better the kitchen is blurred because it prevents any "fixed ideas" on how you'll make a kitchen look.

    Everyone has different views and they tend to want everything uniquely designed for them to their tastes and styles.

    I would strongly say - the consultations are completely free, friendly and supremely helpful (with tips and ideas that will amaze and enlighten). And of course there with no pressure or obligation.

    Maybe give "Rose" a bit of a persona making sure women can relate to her (who is she and why should they listen to her?).

    Forget the "one spot" malarky if people believe it they'll think it's gone. And won't respond. If they don't believe it they'll think bad thoughts ("Oh yea - fibs before you even get here?"). So make it 3 or 5.

    Tell them they'll be genuinely thrilled to see just what can be done to their kitchens (a couple of testimonials will help prove this).

    And everyone gets their very own fully customised plan, a priority "to do" list or a "lets work step by step to your budget" program.


    It will bump the response if they also get a valuable complimentary kitchen "gadget" for having a consultation.

    Might have a trade price of a tenner but worth a lot more to the prospects.

    It's surprising how a decent cooking timer or a classy salt and pepper pot can help bring in 3k, 5k 10k plus orders.


    Steve


    P.S. Adding these extra benefits will no doubt increase the size of the Postcard. Which in itself is a benefit. Because you don't want it to be a standard "this looks like a typical Ad" size.

    It would be clever to include a magnet so it can be popped onto the fridge (could be a touch expensive but well worth it - it can create ongoing streams of enquiries - when you thought the campaign had run its distance suddenly more people call who kept seeing the Postcard maybe 7-10 times a day).

    With or without the magnet at the bottom of the card print - "Please, put me on the fridge - so you don't forget how beautiful your kitchen can and should be - just the way you want it!"

    This also helps prevent the sad, sorry and fatal Postcard illness - "Binitis."
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  • Profile picture of the author ChrisNosal
    Banned
    Originally Posted by alanj View Post

    Any tips or advice for improvement on my postcard before it goes to print, or is it going to get me inundated with enquiries as it is ?
    From a design perspective, there's too many elements with no clear organization hierarchy.

    The constant font and color changes force my eyes to do a bunch of unnecessary work, and brain to apply unnecessary effort trying to figure out what this page is about?

    A lot of it has to do with all the contrasting colors, for example, turn the red to black, and it will instantly be easier to read and follow.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oziboomer
    Originally Posted by alanj View Post

    Any tips or advice for improvement on my postcard before it goes to print, or is it going to get me inundated with enquiries as it is ?
    Hi Alan.

    I'd get rid of the scarcity...1 Spot left? Really?

    Why not just say "Call me...my name's Rose and my number is XXXXX"

    You may want to split test a male name also to see if there is any difference in response.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    I agree with getting rid of the false scarcity.

    I agree with the kitchen being blurred since, as you know, you are messaging to women
    concerned about their kitchens.

    I don't like the wavy lines of the text on the clipboard.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jack Gordon
    I find the headline hard to read.

    And I agree, the false scarcity sets off my bs detector too. I think there is a way to do it that would be better if you want to use it at all. Something like "time permits only 7 per month, and they fill up fast" would be more believable and therefore more motivational.

    I would hammer them with the "free gift and no obligation" promises. Those are going to be what breaks down their natural defenses to let you in their homes. I would take it even further with something like a free 30-point analysis of their kitchen that they can take anywhere to jumpstart their remodel. I know you don't want to give them that idea, but the fact that you say something like that will increase their confidence in you as an expert.

    Definitely use some testimonials too. Even three or four word ones will help.

    There is a lot of other good advice in this thread so far. You have a great start.

    Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author themoney222
      Sorry for being off topic, but this thread reminds me of getting a $750 postcard project on freelancer.com, where I was able to also outsource the work for $75, and my client was happy. Easiest $675 I've ever made in my life.. only took about 2-3 hours of work

      Project mostly consisted of design and a bit of copywriting
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  • Profile picture of the author SashaLee
    Hi there,

    That headline looks familiar! :-)

    All the best,

    Sasha.
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    • Profile picture of the author alanj
      Originally Posted by SashaLee View Post

      Hi there,

      That headline looks familiar! :-)

      All the best,

      Sasha.

      Thanks Sasha, in what respect ?
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Lessard
    3 quick issues.

    1. No credibility building. You can do this easily and visually with little logos like the Better Business or Homestars star rating or similar that is applicable to you.

    2. There is no strong call to action or reason they should actually contact you. No mention of what you actually do or why people choose you. Sure they all have these problems and yes they would like to do something about them. Ask yourself why they have not done something about them? Trust, price, timing, offer etc...

    3. Something more than just a phone number to contact or text. Being an internet marketer I have to say website url? A site that sets you up as the authority and an educator with an ebook they can download that will protect them from all those nasty providers that are not you... :-) This can be a simple site with a killer landing page that allows them to communicate via email.

    Keep in mind that if you ONLY give phone number as a source of initial contact you will lose many people. They like to remain anonymous until they have a bit of trust. I drive about 250k/month in quote requests for a granite manufacturer/installer and about 80% of that is driven via contact form/emails and even with amazing trust, social proof, ebook, live spokesperson on site, reputation many still start with a throw away email that does not really identify them until the 2nd exchange then suddenly they warm up and reply from primary emails with contact info etc...

    We managed to overcome this with a killer quoting engine that appears it will spit out the quote on screen but once we have them emotionally invested they give us there info on the final screen to the tune of about 90% including phone numbers.

    Give-aways are also VERY effective. With orders of a certain square footage we give them a choice of one of a dozen sinks that we have created an amazing display for on the wall in the showroom so this give away is included in ads.

    Here is what is REALLY Funny. If they are walk ins that have not seen the sink give away. The advisors (not salespeople) if they see the prospect is about to walk because they want a better price will say "ok I spoke to our manager we can give you an additional 10% off or one of our premium sinks that we will install"

    The average orders are around the $4500 mark so 10% would be $450.
    About 80% of prospects are choosing the sink. Our cost on the sinks is $90 but their perceived value is much higher because we have a great display that paid for itself the first weekend it was installed.
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  • Profile picture of the author dgaunn4114
    I don't think the postcard is very good personally.

    I agree with those who recoil with the BS-ey false scarcity.I'd prefer something more educational with less of an attempt to be flashy. Think an engrossing headline, almost like an advertorial.

    Also we are forgetting the MOST important part of all this --> The list you are sending too.
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  • Profile picture of the author jordorules
    Looks great I don't particularly like the brown and yellow color on the bottom right. Just seem dated and women are all about modern especially with their kitchens. Men too I guess. The copy and checklist questions are great and well thought out to "hurt" them and make the problem worth acting on. Now you need to have your "call to action" or your "rescue". I assume your putting that in on the far side and I agree with another warrior about credibility building some how. Hope that helps. J
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    • Profile picture of the author alanj
      Originally Posted by jordorules View Post

      Looks great I don't particularly like the brown and yellow color on the bottom right. Just seem dated and women are all about modern especially with their kitchens. Men too I guess. The copy and checklist questions are great and well thought out to "hurt" them and make the problem worth acting on. Now you need to have your "call to action" or your "rescue". I assume your putting that in on the far side and I agree with another warrior about credibility building some how. Hope that helps. J


      The designer/copywriter specifically advised against having anything else on the other side
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      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        I think using both sides makes sense.

        I get postcards, some happen to be backside up when I handle them... They go to the trash without me seeing what the offer was. If they'd had an offer on the other side, they'd have a chance of staying out of the trash.

        Originally Posted by alanj View Post

        The designer/copywriter specifically advised against having anything else on the other side
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    Ladies... Does Your Kitchen Pass The Guest Test?
    Apparently guys don't own kitchens.
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    Hi
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      Apparently guys don't own kitchens.
      Apparently single guys do own kitchens but are more interested in what goes In the frig than getting a new one. enter a female into the picture, and all of the sudden the kitchen needs a remodel.

      plus that beer don't stain the countertops - red wine on the other hand... wicked nasty!
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  • Profile picture of the author helisell
    Why not say

    call me and I'll send you a bunch of 'before and after' pictures so that you can see how brilliantly I design kitchens.

    If you're going to have a kitchen designed and you like what I've done for others then call me soon
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  • Profile picture of the author gemmom24
    After reading your post card and all the critiques, I still can't figure out what kind of business this is. All I know is that it has to do with kitchens. And as someone who is actively looking to remodel my kitchen, I would never read all those questions. As another poster said, it's too much for my brain. You need to get your point across simply and clearly. Before and afters --while somewhat cliche --really show, rather than tell, what your business is. Also, I find "Ladies" mildly offensive and old school. Plenty of men want nice kitchens, too. People don't need to be asked all those questions if they're in the market for a kitchen remodel. They already know their kitchens suck. And there is no clear benefit, either. Call me if your kitchen is awful? Why? What will you do for me? And I agree with OP who said to take out the 1 spot thing. (Sorry I'm being so harsh -- I've written a lot of direct mail with the ad agencies I worked for!) Best of luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Its not that there are to many questions... They simply are not asking the right question that connects with you. above and beyond the imagery of the card or what ever else, the copy is not reaching its market.

      In terms of "Ladies" it is statistical fact that major purchases in excess of hundreds of dollars with the exception of travel and sports is 80% of the time left to the lady of the house. you simply cant fight those odds. As much as yes there are gentleman that redo their kitchens the majority of the purchase power and decision making is in the court of "ladies".

      Originally Posted by gemmom24 View Post

      After reading your post card and all the critiques, I still can't figure out what kind of business this is. All I know is that it has to do with kitchens. And as someone who is actively looking to remodel my kitchen, I would never read all those questions. As another poster said, it's too much for my brain. You need to get your point across simply and clearly. Before and afters --while somewhat cliche --really show, rather than tell, what your business is. Also, I find "Ladies" mildly offensive and old school. Plenty of men want nice kitchens, too. People don't need to be asked all those questions if they're in the market for a kitchen remodel. They already know their kitchens suck. And there is no clear benefit, either. Call me if your kitchen is awful? Why? What will you do for me? And I agree with OP who said to take out the 1 spot thing. (Sorry I'm being so harsh -- I've written a lot of direct mail with the ad agencies I worked for!) Best of luck.
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      • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
        Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

        Its not that there are to many questions... They simply are not asking the right question that connects with you. above and beyond the imagery of the card or what ever else, the copy is not reaching its market.

        In terms of "Ladies" it is statistical fact that major purchases in excess of hundreds of dollars with the exception of travel and sports is 80% of the time left to the lady of the house. you simply cant fight those odds. As much as yes there are gentleman that redo their kitchens the majority of the purchase power and decision making is in the court of "ladies".
        Let him and others think otherwise.

        I have the specific numbers, including return on investment
        for this type of promo.

        Can anyone come up with specific numbers of a postcard sent out to
        sell kitchen remodeling speaking to ladies and asking questions like this?

        So far, nobody other than me.

        Here's the numbers...
        banked $17,800 from his tiny direct mail campaign.

        Total spend, $86.

        Total return on investment, 209 to 1.

        In another thread, a lady wanted to phone the kitchen remodeler
        based on this postcard style...not because she was offended.

        So friggin easy to get caught up in biases and not what has worked and
        transferred into the same product in another location.

        Best,
        Doctor E. Vile
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        • Profile picture of the author gemmom24
          Ewen, I'll never argue your numbers or success!

          The "ladies" bit was just a small part of my commentary. In some places, that would be a welcome salute. The U.S is in flux right now with regard to the Supreme Court's decision on making gay marriages legal....that's all I'm saying.

          I stand by my other comments. I wish everyone success!
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          • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
            In terms of "Ladies" it is statistical fact that major purchases in excess of hundreds of dollars with the exception of travel and sports is 80% of the time left to the lady of the house. you simply cant fight those odds. As much as yes there are gentleman that redo their kitchens the majority of the purchase power and decision making is in the court of "ladies".
            Yes, but the word "Ladies" is terribly old-fashioned and out in some parts of the country, such as where I live. It comes across as condescending, here. (New England)

            Marcia Yudkin
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            • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
              Originally Posted by marciayudkin View Post

              Yes, but the word "Ladies" is terribly old-fashioned and out in some parts of the country, such as where I live. It comes across as condescending, here. (New England)

              Marcia Yudkin
              Perhaps "Women" would be better sounding and converting? Very worthwhile to try as a word can make a huge difference in conversions. OP is in England?

              I know that in the auto industry, it is around 80% of the time that women make the decisions about the new family vehicle - type, colors, etc.

              After four years of managing my hotel, I've seen two occasions where the man needs to see the room
              first. At least two other times, men have made the reservations here, and their wife or girlfriend has gone ballistic because they wanted a newer, fancier place. (We're just an independent two star, small mountain town hotel that was built in 1964. Definitely not a place a guy should bring his '5 star Martha's Vineyard resort Head of Housekeeping girlfriend' to for their anniversary.)

              Dan
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    • Profile picture of the author Barry Unruh
      Originally Posted by gemmom24 View Post

      After reading your post card and all the critiques, I still can't figure out what kind of business this is. All I know is that it has to do with kitchens. And as someone who is actively looking to remodel my kitchen, I would never read all those questions. As another poster said, it's too much for my brain. You need to get your point across simply and clearly. Before and afters --while somewhat cliche --really show, rather than tell, what your business is. Also, I find "Ladies" mildly offensive and old school. Plenty of men want nice kitchens, too. People don't need to be asked all those questions if they're in the market for a kitchen remodel. They already know their kitchens suck. And there is no clear benefit, either. Call me if your kitchen is awful? Why? What will you do for me? And I agree with OP who said to take out the 1 spot thing. (Sorry I'm being so harsh -- I've written a lot of direct mail with the ad agencies I worked for!) Best of luck.
      That blows my mind.

      Do you know why?

      I have never known a successful direct mail writer who would write a paragraph without breaks like you just did.

      I'm not questioning that you have done it. It just surprises me that you wrote a post without breaking it into smaller paragraphs to clarify your thoughts.

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  • Profile picture of the author Freebiequeen1999
    Hey things could be worse...just saw really funny bunch of old "Mad Men" type ads from the 50's and 60's....LOL

    13 Stunningly Sexist Ads from the Fifties - Purple Clover
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  • Profile picture of the author MarcParkinson
    It's really good, headline is eye-catching as well but at some spots it looks like things are little bit crammed in but it's LOT better than what I would have put togehter! LOL
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