Wow! Thank you to all our amazing contestants this past month!
    We had some terrific entries – and we thank you all so much for sharing your ProspectsPLUS! and Opportunity Knocks experiences! If your name wasn’t drawn – no worries! We’ll choose another winner next month!
    Congratulations!

    Our June $150 winner is Mary Busscher who shared:

    “Opportunity Knocks has great products and outstanding service. They create your product, take care of the delivery details and mailing. I am able to use my time to design and leave the marketing to the experts. All their products are very professional and depict my business services beautifully. Andy and Christian and their team provide excellent service.”

     

    Thank you Mary and to everyone who entered! Ready to throw your hat in the ring? It’s easy! Simply share your experiences on our ProspectsPLUS! Google+ or Facebook Page, or our Opportunity Knocks Google+ or Facebook Page and you’ll be automatically entered. Next month we’re giving away a whopping $500 credit. The drawing is the first week of September!

      It’s safe to say that most people are not as interested in how things work as they are in the how those things improve their life.

      Zero-to-60 in five seconds? Yeah! How the innards of a car engine work together? Nah, not so much.

      Results are cool. Results are sexy. The rest is for the scientists, mechanics, and geeks of all varieties.

      And it’s no different with direct mail marketing. (Sure…it’s an intensely interesting subject but, again, we’re mostly interested in the results it can bring)

      When it comes to postcard success, results are brought about by paying attention to five points and “tuning them up” to for the optimum postcard performance:

      1.) Simplify It

      It’s easy to get carried away trying to jam all the information about your product or service onto you postcard. But that’s not what a postcard is for. So, keep it simple.

      Use fewer and shorter words, shorter sentences, and shorter paragraphs. This applies to your headline, call to action and body copy. By keeping things short, your message can be understood quicker and with more impact. Make a game out of how few words you can use to deliver your offer.

      Don’t try to tell your whole story or give all of the information. With a postcard, you’re trying to capture and increase interest, not close a sale. So give just enough information to accomplish that.

      2.) Make An Offer

      If you send out postcards that only have the effect of saying “Hey, look, we’re here. We’re open for business. We’re ready to serve you, etc.,” you’re wasting your money and filling up peoples’ recycle bins.

      Make sure your card presents an offer. An offer is a combination of things:

      • A good deal
      • A sense of urgency
      • A call to action

      An offer such as “Call now for 10% off your first order” contains a good deal (“15% off”), urgency (“now”) and a call to action (“Call”). You can increase urgency with time or quantity limits. You can increase the value of deal in more ways than we have room for in this post.

      3.) Target Your List

      We will assume you’ve developed a “house list”—that list of people who have already purchased from you or who have responded with interest to your earlier direct mail. Now, the trick is to figure out how to mail to more people who are just like your house list.

      The way to not do it is to shotgun a lot of postcards over a geographic area without consideration to targeting.

      A better way is to buy or rent a mailing list. But an even better way is to use a tool like Nielsen’s PRIZM Database,  which enables you to target people based not only demographically but according to their attitudes, buying behaviors, and other similar “psychographic” data.

      4.) Remember to Follow-Up

      This falls into two categories: (1) Following up with customers and (2) Following up on your results.

      If you send out a postcard with an offer (and you’ve got to have an offer, remember?), follow it up with reminder that the offer is coming to a close or you’ve only got two left at that price, or make the offer even more attractive with some add-on or further discount.

      And then ensure that your employees are tracking with your campaign. For instance, if you’re mailing a postcard that acts as a coupon, make sure that your employees are collecting them during the sale. Then you can see if your campaigns are paying for themselves.

      5.) Make It About the Prospect, Not the Product

      As we made reference to in the opening of this article, people (your customers and prospects) aren’t much interested in the superiority of your product or service. They snore when you give them specs (unless your customer is another business) and tune out when you talk about durability, warranties, materials, etc.

      People don’t care about products or services; they care about how such things benefit them. Ask yourself “How does my product/service make life easier, safer, more exciting, etc. for my customers?” The answer will depend on what it is you’re selling, but once you isolate the benefit(s), emphasize it on your postcard.

      You can expect your best results when your campaigns are “hitting on all five.”

      One way that ProspectsPLUS! makes your life easier is by enabling you to design and print your next postcard, as well as create a targeted list and activate the mailing. Log on now to www.prospectsplus.com/pei and see for yourself.

      Another way we do it is…by doing it all for you, through our full-service division, Opportunity Knocks. Give them a call at 1 (866) 319-7109. They’ll listen to your marketing goals and design an effective postcard campaign for you.

        You’ve heard of the “dopamine effect?” The “experts” (psychologists, etc.) say that it’s what is to blame for addiction—anything from alcohol to a “Like” on one’s Facebook post—and how people go back to these things over and over, in hope of getting that same pleasurable feeling again.

        Simply, dopamine is a chemical in the body which is said to affect our emotions, movement and the sensation of pleasure. The theory is that when certain things happen in life, dopamine is released in the brain, and it makes you feel good or it motivates physical activity.

        The “experts” say that the dopamine effect is what’s behind “smartphone addiction,” “social media addiction,” and “video game addiction.” (We suspect that the experts might be addicted to identify new addictions.)

        The dopamine effect may or may not be a real thing. For our purposes, it’s just a handy analogy to describe the feeling of pleasure we experience when we get something we want.

        Perhaps people just like what they like and so they want more of it. We’re not sure. But one thing we are sure of is that people don’t visit their mailboxes everyday because they’re addicted to getting another bill.

        And most people do check their mailboxes daily. The U.S. Postal Service found that 98.6% of Americans bring their mail in and read it every day.

        Why? Perhaps it’s the same reason that they check Facebook 20 times a day to see if anyone liked or commented on that video they posted of a German Shepherd saying “I love you.” They need that “hit” of attention, recognition, and communication.

        So, dopamine or not, there is an addiction problem and it’s rampant—a national epidemic.

        The only humane thing that a responsible marketer can do is…send more direct mail to people.

        Direct mail doesn’t just help promote your business; it makes people feel good, too. It brings them pleasure and happiness.

        – – –

        Yes, that was all a bit tongue-in-cheek.

        Look at it this way: Americans are out there, every day, picking up their mail. A recent Postal Service report called “The Mail Moment” found that Americans spend up to 30 minutes a day going through their mail and reading it.

        So send them something. You’ll make their day, and it’s an opportunity for your business to truly be seen.

         

        Some of our clients are addicted to the flexibility of being able to design and mail postcards wherever there’s a WiFi connection. Log on to ProspectsPLUS at www.prospectsplus.com/pei, to access our customizable design templates and prospect-targeting tools.

        Our other clients are addicted to our full-service outlet, Opportunity Knocks. Give us a call at 1 (866) 319-7109 and let’s discuss your customers and your marketing goals. We’ve created successful postcard campaigns for thousand of businesses in nearly every industry.

          Wow! Thank you to all our amazing contestants this past month!
          We had some terrific entries – and we thank you all so much for sharing your ProspectsPLUS! and Opportunity Knocks experiences! If your name wasn’t drawn – no worries! We’ll choose another winner next month!
          Congratulations!

          Our June $150 winner is Erik Bolog who shared:

          “Please allow me to express my sincere and utmost gratitude and thanks to the team at Opportunity Knocks/Prospects Plus, ESPECIALLY Courtney in particular. She has been simply amazing in helping me bring my vision of a vast marketing campaign to reality, every step of the way…answering all of my questions with complete and total class, knowledge, and professionalism, and addressing any concerns I might have had with a seemingly never-ending positive and down-to-earth attitude and mindset. I wish more companies out there had such dedicated and passionate people like this, I feel like I am part of a true family that cares! 🙂 Thank you again for everything, it truly is appreciated. You officially have a customer for LIFE.”

           

          Thank you Erik and to everyone who entered! Ready to throw your hat in the ring? It’s easy! Simply share your experiences on our ProspectsPLUS! Google+ or Facebook Page, or our Opportunity Knocks Google+ or Facebook Page and you’ll be automatically entered. We’ll give away $150 credit. Next drawing is the first week of August!

            In the dictionary, the word “provoke” is defined: “to stimulate or give rise to a reaction or emotion in someone.” It’s usually associated with strong and unwelcome reactions.

            The word “provocative” is defined as “causing annoyance, anger, or another strong reaction” or “arousing sexual desire or interest.” In either case, it’s done deliberately.

            However, in direct marketing, being provocative means that your headline is not boring “vanilla” but is more interesting. It gets the reader’s attention and arouses an emotion. It generates further interest, and gets people talking. The more interest you generate, the more response and, ultimately, the more sales you get.

            So, sometimes it pays to be a bit provocative. Here’s how you can do it:

            Sex?

            It’s been said for some time now that “sex sells.” What does that mean? It can be the use of any allusion to sex in writing or in images, to sell a product:

            • The toothpaste that promises “a whiter, sexier smile and fresh breath”
            • The perfume commercial that shows guys noticing the girl when she starts using the fragrance
            • The online ad for a fitness product that shows young women ogling ripped, middle-aged men

            Of course, you know your typical customer/prospect best, so you can gauge if using sex is the right approach or if it will alienate people.

            Though often effective, sex is not the only way to be provocative in your marketing. Anything that causes an emotional reaction is considered provocative.

            With a little thought and research, you can tap into “provocative power” without offending anyone.

            One way is to study the covers of Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest, the National Enquirer and similar publications with a marketer’s eye. These publications’ selling power is fully in the emotion-provoking copy on their covers.

            A few recent examples:

            • “Donald & Melania Fight Back: How They’ll Crush Their Enemies”
            • The Bachelor Betrayal: I Made a Huge Mistake…I Had To Take a Risk.”
            • “Is Your House Trying to Kill You?”

            Conflict, sex, personal relationships, environmental menaces—these are all big emotional “buttons” for people. And there are plenty of milder (but still effective ones). You push them and cause a reaction. The one(s) you use might be broad or they might be more specialized and unique to your audience.

            Study the Pro-vokers

            Along with starting to pay attention to the provocative value of tabloid and magazine headlines, you could also start looking at and learning from the work of master marketing copywriters, some of whom can be very provocative.

            Among these is Gary Halbert. It’s said that his provocative “Can You Look Younger?” headline helped propel Vikki Lamotta Cosmetics into a $30 million winner. Among Gary’s other provocative headlines were “Half-Dead Cuban Washes Ashore in Miami With Strangest Secret That Can Double The Income of Most Americans!” (That’s pretty provocative.)

            Another guy to study is Bill Jayme, who wrote winning campaign after winning campaign, starting with his very first direct marketing letter as a copywriter at Time magazine. Among his most famous headlines was now-legendary envelope strapline for a Psychology Today magazine subscription campaign: “Do you close the bathroom door even when you’re the only one home?”

            These guys were professional provokers (“pro-vokers”). Google them and “greatest copywriters” and study what they wrote. Get a “feel” for what makes a provocative headline.

            Keep Your Eyes Open

            Great ideas—provocative ones that you can adapt for your own marketing campaigns—are all around. So pay attention. They can be found in the subject lines of marketing emails in your in-box or in the direct mail that you receive. You might see a billboard or….

            Take note of headlines that grab you. Get a copy and put it into your “swipe file” of copy examples that impressed you or that you might use for inspiration or adaptation in the future.

            If you do these things, you will end up being a more provocative and effective marketer, even if you stay entirely away from the topic of sex.

             

            Postcards that will fill your customers with desire—for your product or service, that is. Log on now to www.prospectsplus.com/pei and design your next postcard using our customizable templates (or your own design). Then target your customers and mail it out, all from your laptop.

            And if what you desire is a little more free time, contact our full-service division, Opportunity Knocks at 1 (866) 319-7109. Tell them about your marketing goals and they will design an effective (and even provocative) postcard campaign for you.

              Though the web is full of marketing “rules” for anyone who cares to Google for such, the 40-40-20 Rule might be one of the most powerful because it’s also the most simple. It doesn’t add more activities to your already busy day but helps you focus your current time budget on the factors that bring the biggest returns.

              The 40-40-20 Rule represents percentages: 40 percent of your marketing success depends on identifying the right people for your mailing list. The other 40 percent depends upon creating the right offer. The remaining 20 percent is…all the other stuff, like the design elements—colors, photos, fonts—of your postcard. (Certainly these things are important but not as important as the other two.)

              You can spend a lot of time on the 20% but the factors that have the most effect on your response and ROI are the list and the offer.

              Here’s how to do it:

              1.) Identify Who Your Customers Are

              The world if full of prospects but, unless you’re fond of wasting tons of money, you don’t need to reach all prospects; you only need to reach the ones who need or want what you offer—a percentage of whom will become your customers.

              So, instead of “spraying and praying” with your marketing, take a more pro-active approach: identify exactly who your ideal customer is, according to demographic factors like these:

              • age range
              • income
              • gender
              • number in household

              Depending on your product/service, you might want to further refine your ideal customer identify based on psychographic factors

              You can learn about all of our mailing list options here.

              The more specific you can get about your ideal customer, the more money you will save because you won’t be sending to “almost” prospects. And the more response you will get because everyone on your list fits the ideal customer description.

              2.) Increase Your Warm Leads

              It’s a truism that the best source of future income are the sources of past income—your existing customers.

              Next in line would be those people who have responded to your marketing but have not yet made a purchase. You can gather more of these warm leads by offering prospects a lead magnet, such as a white paper or special report or even a free gift, in exchange for them sending back a business reply card back in the mail or visiting a landing page and taking a short survey. Not everyone will take the bait but many will and those will be your hottest prospects.

              3.) Personalize Your Offer

              Notice that both steps #1 and 2 deal with your list? Step 3 is all about your offer.

              By “personalize,” we mean “present an offer that creates a strong incentive with your ideal customer.” This can be one of many different approaches:

              • Two for one
              • 50% off
              • Time limited
              • etc.

              You know your ideal customer best, what grabs their attention, and will make them hang on to your postcard for immediate or future use. So put 40% of your efforts into making sure the offer “speaks” to them.

              4.) Test and Adjust

              The truth is that even after putting 40% of your attention on the list and 40% on the offer, you can send out your postcards and get dismal response. This is completely normal and should not discourage you. Rather, it should be looked upon as a sort of survey of what works and what doesn’t.

              Even a dismal response will provide some valuable data to help you adjust your approach and receive a better response next time. In order to maximize this feedback in your early mailings, do A/B testing on the demographics you think are the most qualified for your product/service.

              A simple way to do this is to mail even quantities of cards to two distinct groups. You could distinguish the two group by any one of the following:

              • ZIP code
              • Age range
              • Income range

              This kind of testing is necessary as it provides even more specific data because as you jockey the differentiating factors, you will discover the traits (age, geography, etc.) in your ideal customers that provide the best response.

               

              And here’s ours: Log on to www.prospectsplus.com/pei right now and design your next post card (and remember your call to action). You can also create a mailing list and handle the mailing, all in one sitting!

              If you need some help with your call to action, give Opportunity Knocks a call at 1 (866) 319-7109. We have lots of experience and success and will design a card that will improve your response.

                Wow! Thank you to all our amazing contestants this past month!
                We had some terrific entries – and we thank you all so much for sharing your ProspectsPLUS! and Opportunity Knocks experiences! If your name wasn’t drawn – no worries! We’ll choose another winner next month!
                Congratulations!

                Our May $150 winner is Kathy Goldfarb who shared:

                “I love ALL of you! You’re SO professional, responsive, fun and easy to work with! As an added bonus, it’s great that you know me personally too! Thanks for all of your hard work and great ideas!”

                 

                Thank you Kathy and to everyone who entered! Ready to throw your hat in the ring? It’s easy! Simply share your experiences on our ProspectsPLUS! Google+ or Facebook Page, or our Opportunity Knocks Google+ or Facebook Page and you’ll be automatically entered. We’ll give away $150 credit. Next drawing is the first week of July!

                  Let us tell you a little story about Kevin and Tracy.

                  They went to the same junior high school in southern Illinois, just a couple of shy kids. Kevin had a crush on Tracy. Tracy liked him, too. But neither of them ever acted on it. Their friends could see it. They commented on it, but Tracy and Kevin were just too shy.

                  It went on like this through high school. He never even asked her on a date. Somewhere in there, he got involved with preparing for college and that took up a lot of his attention…but the crush remained.

                  After graduation, he went off to school at M.I.T. and nearly forgot about Tracy…but not quite. A couple years later, on a visit back home, he discovered she’d gotten married to another guy they’d both gone to school with. It hurt. It was only 20 years later, after Kevin was married (he’s somehow become a bit more assertive) that he found Tracy on social media and they both had a laugh about it.

                  Cute story—like something from a romantic comedy, right?

                  Your business is not a comedy but “The Story of Kevin and Tracy” is a strong lesson for any business.

                  Have you guessed what it is?

                  You Must Always Ask

                  It’s your call to action. Businesses do this in different ways, from the crude-but-sometimes-effective “Buy Now!” to these more refined calls:

                  • “A 15-minute call could save you 15% on your car insurance”
                  • “Call now for a free quote”
                  • “Order now to receive a free gift”
                  • “Call before June 3rd for a 10% discount”

                  We are frequently blown away by how many businesses don’t include a call to action on their marketing. Some people think that calls to action are “salesy”–uncool or cheesy. Truly, there are some cheesy and corny calls to action out there. Some people just neglect to include a call to action because they don’t think it’s necessary or they don’t recognize its importance.

                  Call to Action = Results

                  There is a huge difference in results between marketing that includes a call to action and marketing that doesn’t.

                  For instance, WordStream reported that having a single, strong call to action in your marketing can increase sales by more than 1,600%.

                  The results-boosting power of a call to action applies, regardless of how you market. For instance, posting a call to action button on your Facebook page can increase click-through rate by 285%.

                  Kevin and Tracy, Again… 

                  There is no guarantee that Tracy would have said “yes” to Kevin if he’d asked her out—or asked him to marry her. But it’s a sure bet that neither “yes” would have happened if Kevin hadn’t given Tracy his “call to action.”

                  You miss 100% of the responses/sales that you fail to ask for.

                  Always include a call to action!

                   

                  And here’s ours: Log on to www.prospectsplus.com/pei right now and design your next post card (and remember your call to action). You can also create a mailing list and handle the mailing, all in one sitting!

                  If you need some help with your call to action, give Opportunity Knocks a call at 1 (866) 319-7109. We have lots of experience and success and will design a card that will improve your response.

                    The purpose of a marketing plan is to isolate the key elements and actions of how you win and keep customers, and ultimately to attain a specific marketing goal. Marketing goals are things like “increase sales ten percent” or “successfully move into ___ market.”  With a plan in place, you always know what to do and how to do it, so you’re not having to dream up new ideas with every campaign.

                    A marketing plan embodies your marketing strategy—the overall vision for the marketing of your business—but also the shorter-term sales goals and actions you will take to meet them.

                    Following these five steps to work out your plan:

                    1.) Analyze the Current Scene

                    Where does your company currently stand?

                    This is not a trick question or one that requires a lot of over-analyzing. Rather, you need only to state what you company is and what it does; what products or services it offers; the benefits of those products or services; and what it is about your company that makes you preferable to your competition.

                    Be brutally honest with yourself: look not only at your company’s strengths but also its weaknesses. Strengths would be such things as what makes your product and/or service better than the rest; what it is about your company that gives it an advantage over the competition.

                    But then also consider the weaknesses: Is your market highly competitive? Do you face any sort of competitive threat? Is the company strong internally? Are there areas that need improvement?

                    2.) Identify Your Target Audience

                    How well do you know your ideal customer? Let’s start with something general and move forward to specifics.

                    Write a simple customer profile. Include the concrete demographics, such as age, geography, and income. Then move into their buying habits, such as how often they purchase your kind of product or service, as well as why—is it on the basic of convenience? Price? Quality?

                    Then take it a step further, looking who your customer really is–their attitude and personal convictions:

                    • Do they lean towards innovation or conventionality?
                    • Are they outspoken and active or withdrawn?
                    • Are they leaders or followers?
                    • Are they modern or more traditional?

                    You can do this kind of customer analysis and summary, even if your customers are other businesses. In that case, you would focus on the type and size of business, the job titles you deal with and other similar and relevant factors.

                    3.) Establish Your Current Marketing Goal

                    The entire purpose of the marketing plan is to help you reach your marketing goal. For a business that’s up and running more or less successfully, goals are typically expressed like the following:

                    • Increase sales by 10%
                    • Expand into a new geographical territory
                    • Expand into a new market

                    For a new business, the goal may be as simple as “bring on 10 new clients.”

                    There may be more than one goal, so make a list and ensure that each list item is something that has an end to it, so you will know when you’ve reached it.

                    4.) Work Out How to Communicate to Customers and Prospects

                    While this blog is focused on direct mail marketing with postcards, we realize that you may have found success reaching certain classes of prospects via other marketing channels.

                    Work out how to best reach prospects at every step of the sales cycle—from cold prospects (postcards are excellent for this group and we can help you find and reach more of them in your geographical area) to warmer prospects, all the way to your active customers.

                    The best to way to figure out which channel is the best one to reach a particular prospect on is to identify where this prospect class goes to gather information about the kind of product or service you sell. For instance, if you find that a certain segment of your potential prospects subscribe to a particular person’s or company’s blog, subscribe to it and read it. I will give you ideas on what this audience expects and appreciates—information you can use to inform your own approach.

                    5.) Decide What Your Marketing Budget Will Be

                    Marketing, rather than being an expense, is an investment on future income. Companies that like to have a constant flow of business market routinely—it’s a regular action, rather than a “one and done” activity. But quality marketing is not free. It costs time, money, or both.

                    Today, the Internet makes it easy for small to medium-size businesses to find cost-effective marketing methods for any budget. But you may still discover that you’ve spent more some months than you’d set aside.

                    In such a case, just jockey what’s been most effective against what’s most affordable. If need be, hold off on the more expensive marketing methods until the less costly ones start producing sufficient income.

                     

                    For as little as $0.59 per each, including postage, full-color postcards are a ridiculously good marketing value, and you can create you own right now, online, and even target a new batch of prospects to mail them to by logging in to www.prospectsplus.com/pei.

                    Or, if designing a postcard is not in your “plans,” you can turn it over to our design and marketing pros at Opportunity Knocks at 1 (866) 319-7109. Tell them about your business and your goals and they design and target a postcard that gets you there.

                      A lot of SMB marketers tell themselves that they are not “creative” or “artistic.” So they naturally approach the design of their marketing campaigns with anxiety and dread.

                      If this sounds like you then we’d like to put you at ease: Creativity and artistic content in your marketing is not what drives sales. 

                      Skills for Marketing Success

                      Marketing success—that is, creating postcards that get great response—is not the result of superior artistic or graphic design ability. Rather, it is the result of a handful of skills that you already have.

                      We can say this with confidence because we’ve seen it time after time, test after test, with postcard after postcard designed by SMB marketers like you over the last 20 years.

                      These are skills that most all SMB marketers have and use regularly. Are you curious what they are? Here they are:

                      • An understanding of your value: Do you know what it is about your business that makes your customers choose you?
                      • An ability to recognize and utilize a good review: Can you exploit a great social proof to your customers and prospects?
                      • A practical design sense: Can you select an image that simply helps convey your message? (Yes, you totally can.)
                      • A willingness to set deadlines: Can you lay down and end date and stick to it?

                      These are all the skills that are required for effective postcard marketing. (Yes, we are sure of that.)

                      Your Value

                      We’re talking about your unique value proposition—the big reason why your customers buy from you instead of from your competition.

                      There may be dozens or hundreds of reasons but you only need to isolate one that sets your business apart from the rest. (Not sure what it is? Here’s three steps to help you figure it out.)

                      Not to get too cosmic on you but postcard marketing is a matter of space and time: You have only so much space to work with—enough for a short, powerful message. And somebody finding your postcard in their mailbox is going to devote only so much time to it, so you can’t expect them to read a lot of copy.

                      Postcard campaigns with a single value proposition do much better than campaigns that try to cram in too much information and too many messages. Solution: hit ’em with a single headline message that communicates your unique value proposition.

                      Testimonials

                      Why wrack your brain trying to come up with “creative” copy if you already have some great testimonials? Prospects and customers don’t always trust what you have to say about your business. Of course you think you’re wonderful, valuable, better than the rest. They put much more faith in a rave review from someone who has paid for your services. They identify with the customer.

                      Let your delighted customers speak for you.

                      A Great Image

                      Did you ever get a postcard from a friend or family member who was on vacation? Was the front of the card full of text you had to read to find out about the exotic or exciting locale they sent it from?

                      Of course not; it had a color photo of a sunny beach or a luxury hotel or a serene countryside. The picture was the message.

                      Postcards—even marketing postcards—are no different. They’re primarily visual with a little bit of text. So choose one or two images that speak for your product or service. This is not difficult. You don’t need an art degree. In fact, in our experience, it’s the people who are not photography buffs that pick the most effective photos for their marketing efforts.

                      For instance, if you do landscaping or painting or cosmetic dentistry, use before-and-after photos. If you do auto repair or plumbing or HVAC, show happy people in their car or home. Pictures of smiling, satisfied people are very effective in marketing (Your customers might even be willing to give you a picture of themselves to use with their testimonial, so ask.).

                      If you don’t have photos of your own, use stock images, like the kind you can get by subscribing to ShutterStock or a donation-based service like Pixabay.

                      Buy Now

                      Give your customers and prospects a reason to buy now by putting a deadline on the offer you’re presenting.

                      People understand deadlines. And because so many of them come with penalties (late fees, etc.), it is possible that people identify any deadline with a penalty. So when you give them a deadline for your offer, they feel they must heed it or they will lose out (penalty).

                      If you don’t, then people lose the card or cover it up with other things they tack to the fridge door. There’s no sense of urgency, so they forget about it.

                      So give them a deadline (“Offer good until [date],” “Supplies limited…,” etc.). It will compel them to buy now!

                       

                      And that is all there is to it—four skills: (1) identify a value proposition, (2) gather testimonials, (3) choose images that tell your story, and (4) set a deadline.

                      So rather than agonizing about “creative” or “art,” for hours on end, you can get your postcard campaign designed and out the door and get back to the rest of your life and your business.

                      In fact, you can do all of this from your desktop, right now, by logging on to www.prospectsplus.com/pei. There you will find customizable postcard templates and list-building tools, and you can even handle the mailing with a few mouse clicks.

                      Or call Opportunity Knocks at 1 (866) 319-7109. Tell our design and marketing pros what you need and want. They’ve seen it all and know what works and will produce an effective campaign and even a targeted mailing list, if you need it.