Offline Marketers: What Would You Do?

13 replies

You have 2 situations.

-You have a phone and can cold call a targeted list of 500 businesses.
-You are dropping 500-1000 handwritten, personal letters to a targeted list.

Which of the following courses would you take:

1) Cold call the 500 list only and drop 500 personal letters without following up, letting them call you if interested.
2) Drop 500 personal letters and "cold call" them a day or two after they receive the letter (and forget the other list).

Let's assume you can do one or the other and not both at the same time.

Experienced Marketers -- What would you do?
#marketers #offline
  • Profile picture of the author danielsteven
    2.) A lot of people lose the deal by NOT following up. I'm a big fan of Direct Mail with a follow up... especially because you said "targeted" as well.

    Missing out on a TON of sales if you just wait for a call back.
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    • Profile picture of the author Irish Intuition
      2. Because I do it and it works. I call the letter a 'warmer' so that
      way it is not much of a 'cold call'.

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  • Profile picture of the author TheRealKG
    Number 2 for sure. You don't ever want to nag a prospect, but it is good let them know "hey, I'm right here if you need me"
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  • Profile picture of the author shane_k

    A few reasons

    You have a great way to start the conversation when you get the business owner on the phone

    when we send out a letter and then follow up with a call the coversation usually starts like this

    You: "Hi, my names Shane from X marketing. the reason I am calling is to see if you received the letter we sent out to you the other day?"

    Them: "No, what was it about?" (if they haven't received it then 90% of the time they ask this question.)

    You: "Well what it was about is..." then you tell them about your offer.

    You then follow up with questions like, "What are you doing for your marketing right now?" "Are you getting the results that you hoped you would get from the internet?"

    If they say yes they have recieved it, then you use that to move forward also.

    Finally, it is a great way to get past the gatekeeper.

    When they ask you, "what is this call about?" you just tell them, "Well, I just need to talk to Jack about the letter I sent him the other day."

    Oh yeah, it's a good idea to just use the business owners first name when talking to the gatekeeper because that implies that you already know them personally and they will usually put you straight through.

    so those are two reasons I would choose number 2

    it allows you to have a great way to start your conversation off with the business owner once he gets onto the phone

    and it allows you a great way to get past the gatekeeper
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  • Profile picture of the author EnzoBlaque
    Definitely number two. That way, the follow up calls wouldn't be "cold"... instead they would actually be a warm calls which can, in some cases, increase conversions.

    Personally, I don't even make follow up calls... The prospects that respond to my Direct Mail pieces are enough for me. My margins are at a suitable level to sustain high enough profits off of 2-3 new clients per week.

    I only wish to attract highly qualified Leads who both WANT and NEED my solutions. This makes closing an absolute breeze and eliminates any "hard-selling" on my part.

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  • Profile picture of the author Lee M
    Doesn't it depend on YOUR business model?

    What I mean is ... EVERY marketing activity has a COST associated with it.

    Especially when you're direct mailing! It's very expensive today.

    Say the 1,000 letters cost $600 to mail out.

    What is your 'break-even' point?

    Also, how much is a potential customer worth?

    Knowing THAT helps formulate your direct mail game plan. Or for that matter IF it's even feasible.

    I can't speak so much to the 'cold calling' aspect of your question ... however, there are plenty of experts here that can.

    P.S. Said another way - just had 2 local clients with direct mail campaigns. BOTH got a 1/2 percent response to a mailing. One client was quite pleased while the other was quite disappointed. Why? One was pitching something that had a LOW average sale versus a HIGH average sale.

    P.P.S. And yes, Jason's point below ... is a great one too. i.e. calls cost your time, but not much else. You could get on the horn FIRST ... and LISTEN ... to what your potential customers are saying in response to whatever you are pitching ... THEN craft the direct mail piece. That's a neat thing to do too!
    Working from Home since 1991
    (Well before anyone knew it could be done!)

    “Observe your competitors, for they first find your faults.”
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Lee's point is a good one. What's your payback on the marketing?

    Calls cost you your time, but not much else. You qualify prospects just as quickly.
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  • Profile picture of the author ElenaK
    I used to have a restaurant business and direct mail was working the best for me. First of all, people keep mail longer, especially if you have a cute design that will touch up your targeted market feelings... Always include you web address, email and phone.
    Second, it's closer to the " warm marketing"... yes it's will cost you more money, but you will have a chance to get better ROI. I would definitely use direct mail.

    I would highly recommend you to read Dan Kennedy on this subject, in my opinion, he is the Master of direct mail communication.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
    #2 and I'll give you a concrete real world case with numbers....

    Several years ago I was in the mortgage business. I developed a system
    for finding people with adjustable rate mortgages that were due to adjust
    within the next 90 days after sending the mail piece.

    I wasn't the only mortgage broker who knew how to identify these people
    so you can imagine that they received multiple mail offers weekly.

    With a marketing method that typically produces single digit response rates
    I got between 35% and 40%. The mail piece was unlike anything anyone else
    was sending... it was a simple post card that looked, at first glance, like it
    may have come from their mortgage company. It contained specific details
    of their mortgage and informed them that if they failed to act their payment would
    increase by "X" amount (the number was accurate based on their mortgage).

    The point is I got slightly less than 20% response from people who called me
    before I had the chance to call them. I got the other 15% to 20% by making
    a quick follow up call to verify that they received the mailer and to ask them
    if they were ready to do something now.

    I sent these cards out in batches of 50 and got 15 - 20 applications from each
    batch. That's more bona fide applications than people sending 500 - 1000 typical
    mailers with no follow up were getting.

    Do #2... no question about it.
    If you knew what I know you'd be doing what I do...
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  • Profile picture of the author SJJPFTW
    2 without a doubt. The follow up is where you make the sale 90% of the time

    If you want to learn more about making money with small business owners for FREE click here to be notified when review copies of my new offline course are available.

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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Lee
    I'm just gonna chime in for #2, for most of the same reasons mentioned already.
    "One of the Most Successful Offline WSO's Ever!
    Get More High $$$ Clients with this Small Business Marketing PLR Magazine
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  • Profile picture of the author digichik
    It can depend on what you're selling. That being said, for my business I would call the list of prospects first. It takes a bit for me to get into the flow of calling, but once I do, I enjoy it -- it's sales.

    I don't feel the need to always have to warm up a prospect, I feel I can do that, many times, by talking to them.

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