Direct Email Marketing – Why Publish an EZine?

Direct email marketing is one of the many business that makes Internet so great. One especially effective way to use it is through having your own ezine or newsletter. With an ezine, you can write for a couple of hours a week and make a full time income.

Basically, having an ezine business model entails that you periodically send out an email newsletter to your subscribers. One really great thing about this is that you don’t even have to send out the messages manually, you can automate the entire process with an email autoresponder. The autoresponder will even send messages on specific days that you designate.

Even better, as an ezine publisher, you don’t even have to have a product to sell to make money. You can make a very nice living recommending the products of others and getting a commission from them. It isn’t uncommon to make thousands of dollars after sending an email that takes 5 minutes to write in which you recommend another persons products. Using direct email marketing will make you easy money.

In addition, not only can you easily have the benefits a publisher of a conventional print newsletter enjoys without having to kill dozens of trees, you can also rapidly spread your expertise and marketing influence to your base of subscribers as an ordinary individual from the privacy of your home.

In other words, there is no need to invest in expensive printing equipment, or hiring a staff which is going to do nothing but cause a lot of stress and waste a lot of your precious time.

If you want to start an ezine, all you really need is a an autoresponder subscription which will allow you to automate the process of sending emails, as well as ensuring that most of your emails are delivered in this era of spam emails gone wild.

So if you don’t want to create your own product, there is still hope for you to have a successful Internet business. Creating a product is always an option, but there is more than one way to skin a cat. By using direct email marketing and publishing an ezine, you can make money without needing to promote your own products. And who wouldn’t be interested in working less than 10 hours a week and pulling in a full time income?

Network Marketing and Taking a Walk

I was out with a friend this morning, taking a walk on one of the many trails that Santa Barbara provides us and I was struck by the many similarities my walk had to network marketing.

We took a path we’d been down before but today, with the weather nearing 80 degrees and some recent rain, the view we saw was different from the view we had just a month ago. This can happen in your business also. Perhaps you tried a marketing method several months ago and did not get the desired results. Try again. You may find a different result this time. Perhaps you’ve spoken to someone about becoming a distributor or buying your products. If they didn’t say yes, try again. It’s possible that life has changed for this person and they just might say yes this time. You might also consider trying a product that either you haven’t tried before or a product that perhaps you weren’t crazy about earlier.

As we walked, flowers that were not at all in bloom a few months ago were now in full bloom and both fragrant and beautiful. Your business will also go through cycles. There are times of year that are a bit slow and there are times of the year that sales and sponsoring will be more abundant.

We passed by many people along our route. Some were walking, some were jogging, some were on bikes, some were walking dogs, some were in groups and some were alone. We are all different. There is always more than one way to get from point A to point B. Each person we passed was enjoying the path a bit differently but each would end in the same spot. Some would get there quicker than others and some would have company along the way.

We also found that some people went out of their way to say “good morning” to us, while others turned the other way not wanting to engage in conversation. We also began a few exchanges. These exchanges were met in many ways. Some people just nodded their head and moved on. Some smiled and moved on. Others wanted to verbally engage with us and echoed our words of “good morning.” This is just another reminder that as we speak with others about our products and business, we will get a wide variety of responses.

Network marketing really is just another part of life with many similarities to those things you are already familiar with.

Advertising and Marketing Budgets Now Need to Work Even Harder to Increase Response on Direct Mail

It seems to me that the UK is desperate to talk itself into recession. Newspapers know that bad news sells papers and so placards scream at us that profits are down, the credit crunch is here, High Street spending is down and so on. The more the media talks about it the more the public gets cold feet and we enter into a downward spiral. A classic example of how bad news is picked up by the public and so exaggerates the situation was a stunt pulled by former US talk show host, Johnny Carson. To illustrate just how easily we are talked into panic he announced on his show that there was going to be a shortage of toilet rolls. Within a couple of days supermarket shelves in the US were empty as people rushed out in a panic buying spree to ensure that they wouldn’t get caught short.

And here we are – doing it to ourselves as a nation. It’s incredible but it is unfortunately what we do in this country. I believe that we are naturally pessimistic – and guess what – that gets me down!

UK businesses start to look closely at their budgets and immediately assume that they can’t make money by increasing sales so they better start to make savings instead. By savings, I mean cuts.

Finance Directors start to operate on a basis of “safety first” at these times and will issue directives throughout the company for other directors and managers to suggest where savings can be made. The first area to be hit is quite often the budget which the finance directors find hardest to embrace – the advertising and marketing budget. The cuts will continue through training and customer services until eventually it comes down to staffing levels and “downsizing”, an expression from the late eighties has once again reared its ugly head – even though the man who invented the whole concept eventually admitted that he got the whole thing wrong.

This is not something that this article can change. It has always happened before, it will happen now and it will happen again. There is such a high degree of inevitability about it that you wouldn’t get odds at the bookies!

However, it is at times such as these, when the media and professional pessimists are determined to have their day that people in charge of steering the markets should try harder with whatever budgets they are left with. It becomes doubly important to make advertising and marketing efforts count for something and to make sure that sales messages hit home and work for the benefit of the company.

Even now, when times are supposedly getting harder, I am still inundated on a daily basis with the same instantly forgettable direct mail as I was when things were apparently booming. Whilst I agree that it is absolutely imperative to go out and get whatever business is out there but surely the way forward is to move towards better targeting and more persuasive direct mail. The emphasis must be changed from a system where sending loads of dross generates a trickle of business to one where a considered move towards better targeting and choosing interactive advertising and marketing pieces will generate improved response.

Having searched the internet for specific figures on typical response rates for direct mail I find that published figures vary from site to site but I can quote very specific examples from one particular company who supply interactive direct mail pieces. Here are snippets from its impressive list of testimonials:-

“We found Whitney Woods really extremely responsive and easy to deal with. Whilst working on one of our largest client accounts we were required to manage a direct mail campaign. Our client was so pleased with the success they sent the following feedback.”

“Thanks guys – just to let you know the feedback on the cube mailing is extremely good. We had anticipated a 1% response on customers signing up online. Our objective was to strive for 1.5 – 3 %, however, I think my faith in creative design is restored as we have current figures showing a 9.6% uptake on the offer with new accounts opened and being used on a regular basis.”

Gemma Garrad, Account Manager, Be Creative, Brighton

“The pop-up box produced by Whitney Woods is indeed a surprise. It has that certain factor that all companies strive for when trying to find the hook that keeps a name in someone’s memory. I know for a fact that customers old and new keep our boxes close at hand because of its uniqueness. Anything that stays on someone’s desk for longer than a day is indeed a marketing tool to be proud of.”

Andrew Bown-Copley, Director, Eagle Design Studio, Rotherham

“Pop up solutions are always well received and generally produce a much higher response from the recipient than other marketing mailers”

David Antrobus, Managing Director, David Antrobus Marketing Ltd, Altrincham

“I found Whitney Woods staff professional, friendly and responsive and most importantly they delivered to a very tight deadline. Their Pop-up cube and Zippalope was used as the invitation to the launch of the new Ramada Ireland hotel group in Dublin and Belfast. The invitation worked very well and received a lot of positive feedback from the invitees. Ramada International for the US were so impressed with the invitations they demonstrated them at a European conference in Germany.”

Stephen Broad, Account Director, Anderson Spratt Group, Belfast

“We were absolutely delighted with the customer reaction to the Cinderella designed ‘Jumpinjax’. They fulfilled all of the criteria of an excellent direct marketing tool – attention-grabbing and a fun way of conveying a very clear selling message that wouldn’t just simply end up in the bin. It’s major appeal was that we were confident that recipients would show the item to friends or work colleagues which immediately multiplied the number of people seeing the information about our show. The Box Office went crazy after the mailing and it increased our sales by 20% on the previous year.”

Tracey Shaw, Head of Sales & Marketing, Theatre Royal, Brighton

These are only a handful of examples but I think that they illustrate perfectly just how important it is in today’s economic climate that your advertising and marketing budget is made to work at its most successful level and for direct mail campaigns I believe that dimensional, interactive marketing is the way forward. Whitney Woods as a supplier of a very large range of interactive marketing products and pop up mailers and is very well placed to help to achieve the improvements in response rates.