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Unread 2nd Dec 2011, 11:23 PM   #101
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Re: Make $5000 per month and be a hero.
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Your 9x12 postcard is awesome. How many of these do you run each week?
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:07 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by dtaylor View Post

It would be hard to sell 5000 that way, I would think.
Not if you had more than one organization selling them.

"Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:17 AM   #103
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Awesome posts and thank you Bob Ross. The use of a local printer is a great tip. I used to work in the shipping dept of a commercial printing company. I was the guy the salespeople would come to for a customer quote. I would give them a midrange-high price with a 7-15% markup tacked on (and that's just the shipping end of it). So after, I would find a lower shipping method and get the job done with a cheaper option, so I made more money for my printing company.Here's some info that I hope may be helpful.

If you work with a local printer in your city, you can pick the printed materials up so you save on shipping to your house. (More money in your pocket) Don't be afraid to negotiate, they have plenty of markup in the price. Negotiate for the bundling (it's nothing to them they have a machine run by a min wage worker for about a 1/2-1 hour of work), the paper, and maybe have them slipsheet lifts of 50 so the home bundling process is faster. These are not expensive things to ask of the printer.The economy is on your side, plenty of printers to find in most areas and the printing industry is hurting.

If you find a printer in the same state, same rules apply for negotiation. It can be shipped to your house as long as your neighborhood allows it. In Cali I used to get a pallet from Northern to Southern Cali in a day for $50-75 dollars, as a matter of fact I remember being able to do that for the West Coast (2 days) Washington to Southern Cal. 600 lbs would be no issue at all.You would have to know the trucking carrier "lanes" I can elaborate more but it may be too to long explain how to get the discounts.

Bob had them shipped by the printer. Ask the printer to use the freight option for UPS/fedex and not ship individually. It will then be considered just one piece (25 boxes+pallet) and is generally cheaper.

I want to say (but cannot verify yet) you may be able to go to a local UPS store/fedEx and set up the pickup as a freight option, get the labels printed and mailed to the printer to add to the shipment (if the printer will allow you to use your own shipper)

If you plan on doing this long term you can call your local UPS/fedex rep (ask a local UPS/fedex driver) and negotiate a discount whatever discount they give you ask for double. Do not be scared, they are just like you (sales)and want the deal. Then you can get the printer from them for free, with the shipping software and if you qualify even a laptop (a quota would have to be met). Also use each other (UPS & Fed ex sales reps) against each other. Tell them you were quoted a cheaper rate by the other. You may have to wait a day or so "while they work on it" this is where you asking for double is in your best interest. Tell them you would like to discuss the final deal over lunch. They have to take customers out X amount of times a month and have a corp credit card.

The idea I'm getting at is cutting out the middle man/shipping dept of the printer. The price is inflated or maybe they do not know all the options. But your paying for their shipping dept handling AND whoever they use to ship + markup

Now here is something else. I will look into this tomorrow to see if it's even worth it. Most of the time at my printing job we could offer to mail the printed materials for the customer (but we add a markup) Cut that markup out by having the printed material sent or driven by you to a mail house that has a onsite P.O. They can bundle it too if the printer won't negotiate.

So you can have it (for my situation) printed in Los Angeles and shipped to a mailhouse for bundling/labels and never touch it other than receiving some proofs before the actual mailing.

The mail house option is hypothetical for now and I will have to see if taking that route can work money wise and in conjunction with the "Every Door Direct" method.

If you have any shipping questions feel free to ask as long as its on topic AND OK with the OP Bob Ross. I do not want to hijack a great thread and make this about shipping.

Or I can start a new topic if there is interest. Hope this helps
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:20 AM   #104
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I looked on the sample but didn't see anything that said "To find out how you can advertise YOUR business with our next mailing, call (xxx) xxx-xxxx" or something similar. (Maybe it was on the back side?)

If not, hope you have something like that on there.

(Or I may have missed it. It's late - need sleep. LOL)

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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:33 AM   #105
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Originally Posted by ShayRockhold View Post

I looked on the sample but didn't see anything that said "To find out how you can advertise YOUR business with our next mailing, call (xxx) xxx-xxxx" or something similar. (Maybe it was on the back side?)

If not, hope you have something like that on there.

(Or I may have missed it. It's late - need sleep. LOL)
I believe these were going to residential only, so very minimal amount of business owners would receive them. I would say that giving up a $495 spot to advertise your own service would not be the best use of the space, unless you couldn't sell that last spot.

Tim Pears
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 01:35 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

I believe these were going to residential only, so very minimal amount of business owners would receive them. I would say that giving up a $495 spot to advertise your own service would not be the best use of the space, unless you couldn't sell that last spot.
Oh, I didn't mean to use a paid spot. Just maybe a line under where it says "Direct Deals."

"To advertise, contact us at (xxx) xxx-xxxx"

"Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 02:22 AM   #107
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You should always use your contact information, because business owners live in houses also.

"To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world."
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 11:41 AM   #108
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Love this thread....I've created my own twist that I hope works wonders.....To save on mailing, think outside the box a little....say youth clubs....home and school...etc...

I'm working on getting a coupon for "Free Gas"...don't you think people will read that?
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:23 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by Big Gee View Post

Awesome posts and thank you Bob Ross. The use of a local printer is a great tip. I used to work in the shipping dept of a commercial printing company. I was the guy the salespeople would come to for a customer quote. I would give them a midrange-high price with a 7-15% markup tacked on (and that's just the shipping end of it). So after, I would find a lower shipping method and get the job done with a cheaper option, so I made more money for my printing company.Here's some info that I hope may be helpful.

If you work with a local printer in your city, you can pick the printed materials up so you save on shipping to your house. (More money in your pocket) Don't be afraid to negotiate, they have plenty of markup in the price. Negotiate for the bundling (it's nothing to them they have a machine run by a min wage worker for about a 1/2-1 hour of work), the paper, and maybe have them slipsheet lifts of 50 so the home bundling process is faster. These are not expensive things to ask of the printer.The economy is on your side, plenty of printers to find in most areas and the printing industry is hurting.

If you find a printer in the same state, same rules apply for negotiation. It can be shipped to your house as long as your neighborhood allows it. In Cali I used to get a pallet from Northern to Southern Cali in a day for $50-75 dollars, as a matter of fact I remember being able to do that for the West Coast (2 days) Washington to Southern Cal. 600 lbs would be no issue at all.You would have to know the trucking carrier "lanes" I can elaborate more but it may be too to long explain how to get the discounts.

Bob had them shipped by the printer. Ask the printer to use the freight option for UPS/fedex and not ship individually. It will then be considered just one piece (25 boxes+pallet) and is generally cheaper.

I want to say (but cannot verify yet) you may be able to go to a local UPS store/fedEx and set up the pickup as a freight option, get the labels printed and mailed to the printer to add to the shipment (if the printer will allow you to use your own shipper)

If you plan on doing this long term you can call your local UPS/fedex rep (ask a local UPS/fedex driver) and negotiate a discount whatever discount they give you ask for double. Do not be scared, they are just like you (sales)and want the deal. Then you can get the printer from them for free, with the shipping software and if you qualify even a laptop (a quota would have to be met). Also use each other (UPS & Fed ex sales reps) against each other. Tell them you were quoted a cheaper rate by the other. You may have to wait a day or so "while they work on it" this is where you asking for double is in your best interest. Tell them you would like to discuss the final deal over lunch. They have to take customers out X amount of times a month and have a corp credit card.

The idea I'm getting at is cutting out the middle man/shipping dept of the printer. The price is inflated or maybe they do not know all the options. But your paying for their shipping dept handling AND whoever they use to ship + markup

Now here is something else. I will look into this tomorrow to see if it's even worth it. Most of the time at my printing job we could offer to mail the printed materials for the customer (but we add a markup) Cut that markup out by having the printed material sent or driven by you to a mail house that has a onsite P.O. They can bundle it too if the printer won't negotiate.

So you can have it (for my situation) printed in Los Angeles and shipped to a mailhouse for bundling/labels and never touch it other than receiving some proofs before the actual mailing.

The mail house option is hypothetical for now and I will have to see if taking that route can work money wise and in conjunction with the "Every Door Direct" method.

If you have any shipping questions feel free to ask as long as its on topic AND OK with the OP Bob Ross. I do not want to hijack a great thread and make this about shipping.

Or I can start a new topic if there is interest. Hope this helps
WOW!

You wake up to all this wonderful gifts other Warriors are willing to share and your gift "Big Gee" is truly worth its weight (pun intended ). Looking forward to whatever else you can find out.

I do hope Bob has no objections to your addition, could not possibly see why since this is helping us all, including Bob.

Thanks again Big Gee, Eva
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:44 PM   #110
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Originally Posted by Big Gee View Post


If you work with a local printer in your city, you can pick the printed materials up so you save on shipping to your house. (More money in your pocket)
My only concern with dealing with a local printer is... competition issue. If you don't control the product you sell and the delivery method is easily duplicated, you might have some people try to undercut you. Just saying...

Many printing houses also provide mailing and "marketing" solutions and you should be aware of it.

I think that even with shipping charges, online (concentrate on web orders) printers might be more competitive. And, more likely, they won't be engaging in any local delivery programs.

Thomas
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 12:49 PM   #111
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Originally Posted by willz605 View Post

Love this thread....I've created my own twist that I hope works wonders.....To save on mailing, think outside the box a little....say youth clubs....home and school...etc...

I'm working on getting a coupon for "Free Gas"...don't you think people will read that?
Or a CPA/affiliate offer tailored to home owners. You would just have to hope your offer converted well or you'd be better off selling the ad spot to another business.

$2 email submit / 250 converts
ADT Alarm Offer $36 / around 14 converts

Crime has shot up in my area and its all over the news. The ADT offer might kill it right now. 0.5% conversion rate would bag me $1800.

Edit: ADT is email only. That would mean building website, getting traffic, getting opt-in, send offer = TOO MUCH WORK lol.
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 01:18 PM   #112
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Again, tough to respond to everything because I'm super busy but ill say some things:

Big Gee: if you want to provide your shipping insight go right ahead, thanks for being considerate!

Thanks to everyone who has thanked me for this post. I've gotten a lot of pms but I can't reply back yet so don't think I'm ignoring anyone.

I went through probably 20 layouts and mockups at first, before I was able to come up with the optimal way to preserve both opposing ads as well as keeping everything minimally cluttered. Unfortunately I don't feel comfortable giving that information out, sorry.

Selling the ad space is actually the easiest part probably! It's navigating the eddm procedures, layout issues, and researching your Target mailing areas that's the most frustrating.

I looked at the non-functioning site about the similar model, they definitely have the right idea as well but I can also see why its not running for them as well.

I do 25,000 pieces going out this week and I can't wait to see the results as I think I've came up with a fountain of gold, but I won't know until the results start pouring in over the next few weeks. I will keep everyone updated though!
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 01:31 PM   #113
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Not too familiar with file extensions. I got publisher and it saves as .pub. Tried to upload as such but no. Saved it again as a .jpg. What I did was to create a layout that someone might want to use. Anyway, here it is, Eva

P.s. The upper right box is for mailing label, might need to adjust size (this is my first rough layout). Its a 9x12 with a 1/8" outside border, this is the printers cutting line.

Starting top left and down, 4x2, 4x2, 3x2
The biggest one is 6x4 and the narow strip is to put your name, slogan, contact etc.

Hope it helps...
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 02:44 PM   #114
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Am I the only one that is a bit confused at how to get the various addresses for the carrier routs on the cards? There has to be a better way than printing up labels and sticking them on each card manually. That is the only way I can think to get that done. I have not seen any talk of this part in this thread.

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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 03:22 PM   #115
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There is no need to over complicate this like some are doing.

Someone above wants to figure out a way to distribute the other 5,000 so they can save on postage thus allowing to charge less per business thus allowing to sell the spots easier!!

Few problems with this train of thought...

1. You'd only be saving $700. Not chump change, but it's not that bad either. Seriously? You want to spend all of this time and energy so you can save $700? So instead of profiting around $3,300 you'd profit around $4,000. Big deal. Let's not forget the worth of your time.

2. You're wasting a ton of time trying to think of other ways to do things than someone has already told you, that someone being a person who has already made this biz model work. So why reinvent the wheel?

All this will do is eventually lead you to talk yourself out of doing this.

3. You're ASSUMING it would be easier to sell. And let's be real here, I'm betting THIS is the REAL reason for all of this. Because for whatever reason you don't think you can sell an ad spot at $400+ per business. Which implies that you think $400+ is too much money. Which is YOUR mental hangup. Not the biz owners.

So....you're looking for an easier way to sell these. Which in YOUR reality means lower the price.

And again, this is assuming it would actually be easier. In reality, it may be the same amount of time/skill to sell a $400 spot than it would be a $300 spot.

Reminds me of a quote I like, "Don't wish your job was easier, wish you were better."

The good thing is, you can make yourself better thus making the job easier.

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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 03:23 PM   #116
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Originally Posted by bob ross View Post

I'd love to talk but I can't, I don't have enough posts to send PM's back, sorry!



Thanks, it's a totally awesome system. "every door direct" is ridiculously cool, just google it. You basically just pick out the routes that a mailman would deliver (usually around 350-600 homes) and you only pay 14.2 cents each to saturate the entire route with your postcards.

These have to be large postcards though (8.5 x 11 or 9 x 12). To send them 1st class it's 88cents just in postage, so this program is truly amazing. No mailing list required, you just need to have it addressed as "local postal customer" and have a small indicia box that notes it as for the program. You pay the postage right at the post office that it's going out to.
I learned something new, this is why I love this forum.
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 04:12 PM   #117
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

Am I the only one that is a bit confused at how to get the various addresses for the carrier routs on the cards? There has to be a better way than printing up labels and sticking them on each card manually. That is the only way I can think to get that done. I have not seen any talk of this part in this thread.
Tim, the mail person delivers one to every house on his route. No addressing necessary.
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 04:15 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by Vagabond 007 View Post

There is no need to over complicate this like some are doing.

Someone above wants to figure out a way to distribute the other 5,000 so they can save on postage thus allowing to charge less per business thus allowing to sell the spots easier!!

Few problems with this train of thought...

1. You'd only be saving $700. Not chump change, but it's not that bad either. Seriously? You want to spend all of this time and energy so you can save $700? So instead of profiting around $3,300 you'd profit around $4,000. Big deal. Let's not forget the worth of your time.

2. You're wasting a ton of time trying to think of other ways to do things than someone has already told you, that someone being a person who has already made this biz model work. So why reinvent the wheel?

All this will do is eventually lead you to talk yourself out of doing this.

3. You're ASSUMING it would be easier to sell. And let's be real here, I'm betting THIS is the REAL reason for all of this. Because for whatever reason you don't think you can sell an ad spot at $400+ per business. Which implies that you think $400+ is too much money. Which is YOUR mental hangup. Not the biz owners.

So....you're looking for an easier way to sell these. Which in YOUR reality means lower the price.

And again, this is assuming it would actually be easier. In reality, it may be the same amount of time/skill to sell a $400 spot than it would be a $300 spot.

Reminds me of a quote I like, "Don't wish your job was easier, wish you were better."

The good thing is, you can make yourself better thus making the job easier.
I totally agree with you. If you can see a way to make $3,000 to $5,000 out of this, the option is not trying to finding a way to make an extra $700 but to use the same amount of time doing the whole thing again and making an additional $3,000 to $5,000.

The fund-raising idea can work but for the extra time involved in trying to save $700 you are better off (in my mind) aiming for a few thousand instead.

Thanks,
DTaylor
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 04:37 PM   #119
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Gene,

honestly, I really was not looking to make more money, just openly brain-storming different ideas. KISS is what I should do and will, lol. It's just that my over=active brain takes off by itself sometimes.

The more streamlined you can stay, the faster/easier/better it is. As far as the fund-raising addition though, it WOULD be nice to have a local school/kids get some $$$ together.

............Back to the original plan..........., Eva
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 04:52 PM   #120
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Originally Posted by SirThomas View Post

My only concern with dealing with a local printer is... competition issue. If you don't control the product you sell and the delivery method is easily duplicated, you might have some people try to undercut you. Just saying...

Many printing houses also provide mailing and "marketing" solutions and you should be aware of it.

I think that even with shipping charges, online (concentrate on web orders) printers might be more competitive. And, more likely, they won't be engaging in any local delivery programs.

Thomas
Thomas you make some very good points about your product/idea being stolen by printers. A couple things you can do to protect yourself is have a contract with the printer barring them from contacting your clients. That's about as much as I know on that. I never dealt with it directly so I don't know how far you can ban them from stealing an idea/customer.

I do know that "on the inside" I've had to send "blank" / no reference labels to customers so their was no trace of who did the printing. My old company even went as far as going through another "friendly" printer to steal a big competitors client and split the profits.

Now your point about printers who advertise marketing, I would stay away from them. They tend to be smaller and corporate owned (like alphagraphics).

I would approach a commercial print house or a small print shop that does not do marketing, but not a small strip mall printer. They usually have huge warehouses for the giant printers. They are behind the times. I recently spoke to a former coworker and they barely figured out how to add images/color to QR codes like a month ago. They are too big to deal with stealing our $5000 jobs. Too time consuming for them. BUT they will print the job even if its a small 10,000 -20,000+ run

You can also look at it like this, everywhere there is competition, you can beat the bigger guys by adding more value to your customers and then you don't have to worry about them being stolen.

Great points Thomas, especially about being aware of the printing/marketing businesses.
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 04:59 PM   #121
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Originally Posted by Vikuna2009+ View Post

Gene,

honestly, I really was not looking to make more money, just openly brain-storming different ideas. KISS is what I should do and will, lol. It's just that my over=active brain takes off by itself sometimes.

The more streamlined you can stay, the faster/easier/better it is. As far as the fund-raising addition though, it WOULD be nice to have a local school/kids get some $$$ together.

............Back to the original plan..........., Eva
You know that's the "good problem" though. A friend I know who turned me on to IM told me that ever since he's been involved, he can no longer look at anything the same. Everything someone talks about or any ad he hears or sees he goes into "idea" mode..How can I do that too with a twist ? or how can I monetize that... or maybe this....I never understood until I started trying to do this. Now I do the same thing. I can't look or hear anything without trying to apply some sort of way to monetize or twist it in hopes that it becomes my goldmine. I am always looking for the ladder and the million dollar check in the mail.
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Originally Posted by pinkgink View Post

You should always use your contact information, because business owners live in houses also.
Exactly.

You also never know when someone who knows of a friend with a biz might see it, too.

"Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 05:43 PM   #123
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Originally Posted by Big Gee View Post

You know that's the "good problem" though. A friend I know who turned me on to IM told me that ever since he's been involved, he can no longer look at anything the same. Everything someone talks about or any ad he hears or sees he goes into "idea" mode..How can I do that too with a twist ? or how can I monetize that... or maybe this....I never understood until I started trying to do this. Now I do the same thing. I can't look or hear anything without trying to apply some sort of way to monetize or twist it in hopes that it becomes my goldmine. I am always looking for the ladder and the million dollar check in the mail.
!!!

Do agree fully but my biggest problem is that in the meantime, I get side-tracked to the next big shiny object and the end result is information over-load and total confusion. And worse of all, NO ACTION because I can't decide on this or that method.

No more of that for me. I'm sticking with the OP's original. Once I got that going I can afford the luxury of trying different things. Doesn't mean I won't toss out whatever else my brain conceives just as a way of getting other Warrior's opinions/thoughts/ideas.

Thanks, Eva
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 06:02 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

Am I the only one that is a bit confused at how to get the various addresses for the carrier routs on the cards? There has to be a better way than printing up labels and sticking them on each card manually. That is the only way I can think to get that done. I have not seen any talk of this part in this thread.
You don't stick on any address labels. The post office know their routes and they will deliver your cards to EVERY address on a chosen route.

You only print "Local Postal Customer" on every card.

Look under: Acceptable EDDM Retail mailing label options

http://www.uspseverydoor.com/assets/...ecs_retail.pdf

https://www.usps.com/business/pdf/ed...ide-051311.pdf


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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 06:47 PM   #125
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Originally Posted by SirThomas View Post

You don't stick on any address labels. The post office know their routes and they will deliver your cards to EVERY address on a chosen route.

You only print "Local Postal Customer" on every card.

Look under: Acceptable EDDM Retail mailing label options

http://www.uspseverydoor.com/assets/...ecs_retail.pdf

https://www.usps.com/business/pdf/ed...ide-051311.pdf


Thomas
So I am wondering how they know which routes to deliver to out of the zip code I chose. I know in my city a zip code will have more then 5K addresses. I would want to blanket the whole zip code so I would have to get a permit I assume.

I guess it would help a little if I read all the instructions on the web site.:confused:

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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 06:52 PM   #126
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

So I am wondering how they know which routes to deliver to out of the zip code I chose. I know in my city a zip code will have more then 5K addresses. I would want to blanket the whole zip code so I would have to get a permit I assume.
If you look at the guide, you can choose streets, cities, ZIP codes, etc.

It look like you can simply choose which streets to deliver to.

"Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 07:00 PM   #127
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Originally Posted by ShayRockhold View Post

If you look at the guide, you can choose streets, cities, ZIP codes, etc.

It look like you can simply choose which streets to deliver to.
So if you want to deliver to certain streets, that would be part of the address on the card I would think. May be easier to just buy a permit. The last time I bought one of those it cost me nearly $100 as I remember it.

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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 07:12 PM   #128
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

So if you want to deliver to certain streets, that would be part of the address on the card I would think. May be easier to just buy a permit. The last time I bought one of those it cost me nearly $100 as I remember it.
Your best bet is to talk to someone at the USPS and find out. They'd be able to give you exact numbers, prices and answers.

"Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 07:34 PM   #129
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Ok let me ask a serious question I am new here and already in love with these forums.

I am also amazed at some of the intelligence of you people for devising things like this. This sounds like a brilliant idea. I do not have real sales experience but I did do training for contracting large basement waterproofing jobs for 6 months (which can also be lucrative if you know how to find clients) and was able to watch my brother a professional contractor close job after job.
He is very good at what he does and excellent at communicating with people. Has a natural sense of humor and everything. I just got my degree in psychology and have also built websites before. I know Adobe Photoshop inside and out as well and have a friend who got his degree in graphics editing and taught me a lot.

My thing is this. I really want to do this. I will do absolutely w/e it takes I will buy a projector just so I can do great presentations (or mayba a laptop is better) but my question is would the owner of this thread be able to mentor me possibly? Like right before I start my prospecting?

I am doing to set everything up first, get feedback from my brother on my presentation, rehearse as much as I can. Am going to build a website, get a business card, and try to do everything as legit as possible. I will also get a permit too if it helps I do not care and will invest if there is an actual decent chance of succeeding at this.

I'm tired of sitting around and finding small jobs that pay nothing I've been working my uni's employment office for 8 months now and they have not been able to find anything good. So I've also been very lost lately and working a laborsome very stressful minimum wage job (stressful cause I like to use my brain the boredom stresses me out lol).

I would LOVE to put my mind to something like this and even the real estate calendar idea too. I can be a very ambitious person when I need to be. I will also compensate the person who made this thread if you'd be willing to review my presentation. I live in NJ and would be willing to do anything. Mail it to you, drive up there and do it... anything.

But my ultimate question is what are my chances of failing at this? If I really put my time into this and get feedback and do it right can I actually succeed? I'm nervous cause I'm excited. And I can't thank you all enough this place is becoming my new home.

-RS
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 08:13 PM   #130
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I've decided to re-read this thread as my "Saturday Night better than a Date Night". Then as things come up, I will make notes on it and find my answers.
I will create my own ACTION plan and check off each step as I go. Come Monday, I will put my plan into play.

Can't wait to hear some more wisdom from Bob.

Best of luck to all of you, Eva
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Unread 3rd Dec 2011, 09:47 PM   #131
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/\ G/luck!

I should say I don't really need Bob's help and I also reread the thread and noticed he lives a very busy life which for some reason I skipped over before. So Bob forget my previous offer I do not want to bother you at all. I'm thankful enough for you just making this thread and I like to believe I'm smart enough to do this with the resources I already have.

I've talked it over with my brother and we're going to get everything set up over the next 4 weeks and then I will begin the prospecting. I really want to lay everything down concrete and make sure I get good conversions so I'm going to take my time a bit. I really think the exposure thing alone is such a selling feature and if you happen upon companies who have already used valpak I don't see why you can't just downsell valpak and upsell your own service to them.

Good luck to those who are actually giving this a shot I will update myself as things move along.


edit: one more point I'd like to note is that in my area specifically I am yet to see any type of 9x12 post card advertisement in the many years I've been here (live in a very densly populated area too). I also asked a few people and they do not recall ever getting 9x12 ads in the mail. So I'm wondering if my area specifically may be behind on this supposed trend of postcards being better for marketing. Either way it should be exciting to find out. =]
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 01:07 AM   #132
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What a great thread! Why it took me a few days to read it is beyond me. I am not a sales person and I could not sell it to 15-16 business owners without some proof. Luckily, I have a client (dentist) that I pitched the idea to and am waiting to hear back from. I found 1,000 residents within a half mile of her office;

*1,000 9 x 12 fliers - $191
*Shipping @ 14.2 cents each - $142
Total Cost = $333

I quoted her $497 and this is to get her testimonial. I figure I make a few bucks, see if this works and have her endorsement. I figure if I can get a 1% ROI that is 10 new patients, according to national averages (for dentists), a new patients is $1,000/year. I plan to explain that this is a "trial" run and if it is successful that I normally charge $997. I hope to talk her into letting me run my own ad on the flier (even if it's only a portion of the flier)

I have a few other clients that I plan to pitch this idea to as well. I am going to start by offering it to individual clients to build up some testimonials and test and then go for the 14-16 ads were flier.

I went to the post office today to discuss this idea and they reminded me postage goes up January 1st

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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 01:32 AM   #133
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

So if you want to deliver to certain streets, that would be part of the address on the card I would think. May be easier to just buy a permit. The last time I bought one of those it cost me nearly $100 as I remember it.
Tim, you really need to read through their site or ask questions at the nearest post office!

All I can tell you is, you DON'T add any address to the label. :-)


Thomas
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 03:04 AM   #134
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Regarding how to label the cards to get to the right postal carrier route: the cards need to be packaged in groups of 50 plus whatever odd number in the last pack is required to allot one card per address on the carrier route. Each of the packs in that bunch for that one carrier route have to have a label which designates the route.

So, for example, if I were to mail to two of the carrier routes in my town, and route 1 has 623 addresses on it, and route 2 has 543 addresses, I would make up 12 packs of 50 cards plus 1 pack of 23 cards, to cover route 1, and each of those 13 packs would have a label on the top designating route 1.

For the second route, I'd make up 10 packs of 50 cards plus one pack of 43, and put a label on each of these 11 packs to indicate route 2.

The postal service also allows "exclusions". So, if there were a competitor, let's say, living on route 2, to whom I would not want the card delivered, that exclusion would be put on a label for route 2 to instruct the carrier to skip that one address on that route. In theory it sounds good, I wonder if the carrier would remember to skip the right address.

Hope this helps.

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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 03:28 AM   #135
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ok guys here is my contribution to this awsome topic. i have a client that needs to do some direct advertising so this is right on time.

i have seen several questions here about how to know where the post cards would go. on a hunch i did what Bob said and went to a main post office to get info. i got lucky and met a guy that not only knew of the program he spent about 30 minuetes with me helping and informing me about it.(he also told me that he used to own a pizza shop and that this program would have saved his business)

what this program does is it send the post cards to every address on a mail carriors route (which is why they have to be in bundles of 50.) you can even select for a combo of business/residential adress or just residential.

i then asked how do i know the area that a route carrior goes so i can select where the adds go? simple he stated. on the website you can put in the zip codes for the area that you want to reach and it will show all of the carrior routes for that zip code and give you a map break down of the area. you can then remove routes that you don't want covered.

to do this you have to go thru the wesite as if you were setting up the account or check out the smp.usps.gov link. this allows you to see the routes without completing the app (great for your reasearch needs.) once you know where you want the mailers to go you wil be directed by the website on where to take them (whih post office) and the forms you will need.

each bundle of 50 has to have the form that the website generated and be numbered (1 of 25, 2 of 25, ect.) the label can be printed on the mailer.

the website is not the easiest to navigate (even my new contact had issues with it) but most of the issues and questions that i see here can be addressed there. he also stated that at least here in NE Ohio very few businesses know about this but they are catchin on.

That my contribution.now if someone would kindly solve the printer issue i would be ever so thankful!!!!!!!!!!!!!


CARPEDIEM!!!!!
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 10:32 AM   #136
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This is such an Awesome Thread! I think I may have found the 9x12 postcards for almost the same rate the OP is paying.
Check it out and let me know what you think
http://www.printdirectforless.com/ju...-printing.html

I found another one but it looks like its the same company but the price was a little lower on this site:
http://quickerprint.com/products.asp?prodID=528

Last edited on 4th Dec 2011 at 11:23 AM. Reason: adding additional resource
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 02:19 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by ikan_sith View Post

each bundle of 50 has to have the form that the website generated and be numbered (1 of 25, 2 of 25, ect.) the label can be printed on the mailer.
So from this, I believe my first impression of needing to print labels (probably from my computer) for each card and applying them by hand to every card.

I think that is where most of the work comes in.

I did bulk mailing previously when I was buying and selling real estate and wanted to mail to massive numbers of renters. I printed the post cards on my computer with a mail merge program (MS Word) and each address was specific. These were 8.5" x 5.5" post cards and I printed them on card stock and then cut them in half to mail. Worked pretty well. But then the bottom dropped out of the real estate market and it was hard to make money.

I don't have my printer here as I don't have the room in my tiny apartment. My wife has an ink jet, but I don't have a printer. In this tiny assisted living apartment there just isn't room. So I would have to figure out something to get around this.

I was wondering how easy it would be to outsource the selling part of this. Seems to me that it wouldn't be that hard to hire one or two sales people to go call on prospects. The residual income should be good because of the high repeat business that seems to happen according to the OP.

Tim Pears
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 02:28 PM   #138
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Originally Posted by BlogDiva View Post

This is such an Awesome Thread! I think I may have found the 9x12 postcards for almost the same rate the OP is paying.
Check it out and let me know what you think
Jumbo Postcard Printing - Full Color Printing Services
Looks like this outfit will merge the addresses onto the cards and even take them to the post office for you. For a fee of course, but it seems reasonable, I think.

Tim Pears
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 02:44 PM   #139
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Hi BlogDiva,

Great find!

The printer at your first link is even fairly close to me so the shipping charges would not be nearly as high as those from the only printer I had found that offered almost what we've been searching for (except they do 8.5x11, not 9x12, and I like the idea of the bigger card better)

I see from your signature line that you design flyers. Would you be interested in designing the 9x12 giant postcards? I've been reading on a couple of the printers' sites the specifications for the files, and I'm not sure I can output the file types they need.

Thanks,
Karen

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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 03:03 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

Looks like this outfit will merge the addresses onto the cards and even take them to the post office for you. For a fee of course, but it seems reasonable, I think.
Tim,
The only address you need on the card is where it says
"local postal customer"
You do not need specific home addresses on the cards. The postman takes a bundle and gives one (any one in the bundle, they are all the same) to each house on his route.

Take a look on the first page of this thread Bob gives an example of the card he uses. The address line is on there.

Hope this helps.
DTaylor
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 03:04 PM   #141
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Originally Posted by Karen View Post

Hi BlogDiva,

I see from your signature line that you design flyers. Would you be interested in designing the 9x12 giant postcards? I've been reading on a couple of the printers' sites the specifications for the files, and I'm not sure I can output the file types they need.

Thanks,
Karen
Sure Karen! I would love to help you and anyone else that is wanting help with the design part of this project. Send me a PM so we can have a Skype or phone chat
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 04:08 PM   #142
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In my further investigations, I wanted to know what postage rates would be, come January. Well, it seems like USPS didn't want to rock their program (which was started in April this year and is fairly un-known) so there will only be a slight increase from 14.2 to 14.5 cents, starting January 22!

Great news I must say, Eva
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 04:51 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

So from this, I believe my first impression of needing to print labels (probably from my computer) for each card and applying them by hand to every card.

I think that is where most of the work comes in.

I did bulk mailing previously when I was buying and selling real estate and wanted to mail to massive numbers of renters. I printed the post cards on my computer with a mail merge program (MS Word) and each address was specific. These were 8.5" x 5.5" post cards and I printed them on card stock and then cut them in half to mail. Worked pretty well. But then the bottom dropped out of the real estate market and it was hard to make money.

I don't have my printer here as I don't have the room in my tiny apartment. My wife has an ink jet, but I don't have a printer. In this tiny assisted living apartment there just isn't room. So I would have to figure out something to get around this.

I was wondering how easy it would be to outsource the selling part of this. Seems to me that it wouldn't be that hard to hire one or two sales people to go call on prospects. The residual income should be good because of the high repeat business that seems to happen according to the OP.

Why do you keep getting hung up on the labels? Even the part of a post you quoted was someone explaining that you DON'T have to put individual labels on the cards. And when they said the address ("local postal customer") could be printed on the card, they didn't mean that you need a printer yourself. Obviously if you're doing this someone somewhere is going to print the cards for you, the little box that says "local postal customer" in it gets printed at the same time as everything else.

Though you might have trouble finding room for 10,000 9x12 postcards in your apartment if you don't have room for a printer - hopefully they won't be in there too long before you can take them to the post office!


The only labels you might need to print are the ones that go on the BUNDLES not on the individual cards, and you should be able to print those on an inkjet. Even if you didn't have that though, I"m sure you could save on a flash drive and take it to Kinkos or something.


Like others have mentioned, take another look at the picture on the first page of this thread, it has the address box right there - there is no specific address printed on it.
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 05:29 PM   #144
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Originally Posted by oogyboogawa View Post

Why do you keep getting hung up on the labels? Even the part of a post you quoted was someone explaining that you DON'T have to put individual labels on the cards. And when they said the address ("local postal customer") could be printed on the card, they didn't mean that you need a printer yourself. Obviously if you're doing this someone somewhere is going to print the cards for you, the little box that says "local postal customer" in it gets printed at the same time as everything else.
----
---
Like others have mentioned, take another look at the picture on the first page of this thread, it has the address box right there - there is no specific address printed on it.
Cuz I ain't too bright. I couldn't see how they knew how to deliver to which carrier routs, but that is with the label on the bundles.

I finally went back and looked at that picture and now I understand, I think. But you never know what you don't know.

It took me a while to understand this, but I think I have it figured now, other than signing up the clients. I did bookmark that web site so I have the basic sales pitch outlined I think.

Tim Pears
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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 08:55 PM   #145
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Originally Posted by Vikuna2009+ View Post

In my further investigations, I wanted to know what postage rates would be, come January. Well, it seems like USPS didn't want to rock their program (which was started in April this year and is fairly un-known) so there will only be a slight increase from 14.2 to 14.5 cents, starting January 22!

Great news I must say, Eva
Great, thanks for doing that, I never even thought of that.

Seb

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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 09:09 PM   #146
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Originally Posted by SirThomas View Post

My only concern with dealing with a local printer is... competition issue. If you don't control the product you sell and the delivery method is easily duplicated, you might have some people try to undercut you. Just saying...

Many printing houses also provide mailing and "marketing" solutions and you should be aware of it.

I think that even with shipping charges, online (concentrate on web orders) printers might be more competitive. And, more likely, they won't be engaging in any local delivery programs.

Thomas
I share your concern. There are too many cut throats out there with little creativity, don't hand them your business on a silver platter.

Seb

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Unread 4th Dec 2011, 09:34 PM   #147
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Originally Posted by SirThomas View Post

My only concern with dealing with a local printer is... competition issue. If you don't control the product you sell and the delivery method is easily duplicated, you might have some people try to undercut you. Just saying...

Many printing houses also provide mailing and "marketing" solutions and you should be aware of it.

I think that even with shipping charges, online (concentrate on web orders) printers might be more competitive. And, more likely, they won't be engaging in any local delivery programs.

Thomas
That is a very good point, I had not noticed it till Sebulba pointed it out. I worked for a fairly large printing plant when I was much younger and they would be pretty quick to cut you out if they thought they could manage it without you. And it wouldn't be too hard, let me tell you. With a sales man out in the field, and a minimum wage employee doing the grunt work to put the mailing together, they don't need you. Best to go to an internet printer and have it shipped to you for the small amount it costs. There is a significant profit margin to more than cover those costs.

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Unread 5th Dec 2011, 12:30 AM   #148
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Originally Posted by timpears View Post

That is a very good point, I had not noticed it till Sebulba pointed it out. I worked for a fairly large printing plant when I was much younger and they would be pretty quick to cut you out if they thought they could manage it without you. And it wouldn't be too hard, let me tell you. With a sales man out in the field, and a minimum wage employee doing the grunt work to put the mailing together, they don't need you. Best to go to an internet printer and have it shipped to you for the small amount it costs. There is a significant profit margin to more than cover those costs.
This is exactly the reason why so many companies relying on direct mail marketing open their own in-house printing department.
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Unread 5th Dec 2011, 10:49 AM   #149
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The EDD "Every Door Direct" program through the USPS that Bob is using with his 9x12 cards has some variables with it. You can actually mail as big as 11x17 but that has to be folded. As long as your mail piece does not weigh more than 3.3 ounces, you're ok. Don't take my word for it though, do your own due diligence.

Some restaurants has actually mailed out their complete menues to neighborhoods they have selected and included coupons with that. Their success rate has been pretty high.

You could also make your piece a brochure in this program. Local contractors seems to be benefiting too.

Food for thought... Eva
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Unread 5th Dec 2011, 11:09 AM   #150
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Originally Posted by Vagabond 007 View Post

While Bob has given more than enough information in this thread for anyone to get started with this and start making money, I have to say...

With all due respect, either spills the beans on the printing source or sell info in a WSO.

I know you said you aren't trying to sell anything, but let's be real here, plenty of people have said that in the past and then just used the thread as a presell to the WSO.

Nothing really wrong with talking about maybe selling a WSO, no shame in wanting to be paid for all of the hard work you've done. I just don't get why people post 90% of things and then say they aren't gonna sell a WSO and THEN turns out they do.

Either sell it or spill the beans. I'm sure there are plenty of people here that would be willing to pay for your info if you decide to go that route.

No disrespect intended, hopefully I didn't offend.
Amen, to this. Bob we who have succeeded in offline business owe it to others to help them. I believe this is the true spirit of this forum Write your WSO and sell it for cheap if you want. Increase your list and help our friends here.

I like what you have done. I won’t be participating as I am not in need of another business. However, I will always support those who are helping others, and you have a good business model here that will put people to work. Write your WSO, you have a lot of it here already.

Nice thread my friend.
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