Wait, we’re confused. Is our headline today baking advice? Dating advice? Actually, it’s a foundational principle of good marketing.

    Ever heard of a lizard brain? Well, you have one. It’s a section of your brain called the amygdala, also known as the “primitive brain,” that’s known for its quick, knee-jerk reactions and fight-or-flight responses. This is where gut-reactions come from.

    These gut reactions happen a lot faster than we realize – usually in under three seconds. This makes them tens of thousands of times faster than your normal thinking mind.

    It’s basically the result of spending tens of thousands of years as a species trying to quickly identify danger – if a bush rustles, we jump. If we see certain colors, we love or feel anxious.

    Because of this, your lizard brain is the first line of defense against all incoming messages, aka any kind of marketing.

    If you’re going to be successful at bringing in new customers, you’re going to have to put on your neuroscience cap and learn to speak to it!

    Here’s some advice for speaking to the gut and
    not the brain:

    1. Use powerful images

    Your brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text. That’s right, you came up with a reaction to the picture of this article that much faster than you registered the title.

    The same research also shows that while we process text much slower, using both pictures and text is the ultimate winning combination to drive home your message and make it stick. You hit the reader with imagery and then provide intellectual rationale.

    The lesson for your marketing should be crystal clear: Choose better images and combine them with text! Those images should be arresting, that is to say, they should have high contrast, intense colors, and stand out from their environment (the rest of their mail).

    2. Use emotion

    Right next to the part of the brain that processes images is the area that processes emotions. It’s a quick leap from sight to feeling, and those emotions are processed 5x faster than the conscious thoughts that follow.

    Thus when it comes to making a good first marketing impression, 62-90% of our feeling about a brand can come simply from the emotion that the color used evokes.

    Which one do you associate with in your marketing?



    Red – sense of urgency, encourages appetite
    Blue – reliability
    Yellow – dependability (but sometimes anxiety)
    Orange – optimism and expression
    Green – tranquility, nature
    Purple – wisdom and respect
    Black – authority
    Gray – practicality

    (You can log into the web-to-print platform and choose a stock image to create a color-powered postcard now)


    3. Use smiling people

    Another powerful universal feature of our brains is their ability to recognize human faces. This only makes sense, as recognizing other people and building relationships has been key to our evolutionary survival. Babies are born with this ability and the emotional center of our brain lights up in a unique way when we see them.

    It’s thus that using happy, smiling people in your postcard marketing is not too unlike greeting them happily in person. Here are great examples:


    Address your next mailing to “the lizard brain”

    Next time you’re marketing, who are you trying to appeal to? The lizard brain! It processes everything faster and it prefers communication via images, color, emotions, and faces. If you can combine all of these elements into an advertising or print campaign, you’re going to be off to the races on ROI.

    Click here to get your own mailing out now

    If you’ve got marketing that needs doing, why not let us lend a hand? Call Opportunity Knocks at 1 (866) 319-7109 and well get you set up with a psychologically-powered campaign series today!

      If all you do is read the first sentence of this article, remember data, offer, design (DOD), in that order.

      What does it all mean? These terms are the keys behind every highly successful postcard campaign that we see come through the presses, including one that recently delivered $40,000 for one of our customers within just one week. (This came from 30-45 minutes of work, we might add. We can’t even start to do the math on that ROI.)

      Remembering these principles thus ensures that your offers get to the right people, say the right things, and look the right way in order to capture leads and customers. Do it any other way, or heaven forbid mix them up, and you risk wasting postcards and precious marketing dollars with dud offers.

      Ready to learn how the 3-secret system works?
      Let’s dive in.

      1. Data

      As David Ogilvy, grandfather of modern advertising, once said, “Don’t count the people that you reach, reach the people that count.” In direct mail marketing, this couldn’t be more true because 100% of your poorly targeted postcards are wasted. The problem is that you don’t ever really know which half that is, and thus you can’t do anything about it. Typically.

      If you’re using a direct mail platform that leverages state of the art technology however, it becomes a different story. Our partners are out there collecting every drop of information you could want to know about your prospects – do they have a credit card? Do they drive a car? Do they have young children? All of this is placed at  your fingertips through ProspectsPLUS’s web-to-print platform.

      The provider of this is Nielsen’s PRIZM, which makes your job easier by just allowing you to select profiles  of your ideal customers.

      With the data piece of things taken care of, you cut out the vast majority of wasted postcards and target just those who are ready to buy.

      2. Offer

      Once you’re focused on the right people, it’s all about what you say! Delivering the right message to the right audience is critical, as personalized offers increase sales opportunities by as much as 20%. Personalization is so powerful in fact that it’s responsible for 1/3 of Amazon’s revenue and 75% of Netflix’s movie rentals.

      Nielsen’s PRIZM put’s this same power in your hands via postcards and when you know precisely who you’re writing to, you can get much more specific.

      Start off the postcard addressing the recipient by first name to grab their attention (just like we do with our emails). Next, talk about what you can do for them and not what they can do for you. Drop the “We’re a contractor who’s been in business 40 years…” intro and tell them how they’ll feel once they buy from you.

      Make the message relevant to their household or industry by peppering in specific jargon that you know will resonate. If they’re a homeowner talk about local landmarks. If they’re in construction, talk about well-known job sites. Ensure that they feel like they’re reading a letter from someone who understands their neighborhood or industry.

      Include the 5 W’s: 

      Who are you to them?

      What is being offered?

      When will the offer expire?

      Where can it be redeemed?

      Why is it important that they act now?

      How do they reach you?

      3. Design 

      This comes third, but is still extremely important as it determines whether your card is picked up and read or not.

      The best design is a high quality photo of one of your customers enjoying your product or service, and the emotions that go with it: excitement, relief, joy. If the photo is grainy or too small, go with a stock image photo. Make sure that it’s bright, powerful, and attention grabbing, and that your call to action (CTA) is displayed prominently and in a different color!





      All set to go!

      What are you going to remember from today? Data, offer, design. DOD. Now the next time that you’re thinking that you need more customers, you know exactly where and how to get started: just log into the ProspectsPLUS web-to-print platform which will walk you through those precise steps to get your marketing out into the world where it can land you more customers!

      If you’re ready to be done for the day, give one of our experts a call at 1 (877) 222-6010 and let’s get you set up!

      Need a little extra help?

      Call Opportunity Knocks at 1 (866) 319-7109 to get help setting it all up so that it runs without you even thinking about it!

        Responses don’t mean jack.

        That’s not to say that they don’t matter – they do let you know that things are happening and that people are responding, but this is only activity. Thinking that a campaign was successful because you got a bunch of responses is like celebrating your victory only halfway through a race.

        While you’re cheering, your competitors are still sprinting ahead.

        And if none of your respondents end up buying anything, or if they did buy but weren’t profitable, then it wasn’t a success. What truly matters is ROI.

        Today we’ll explore a few scenarios where responses did not lead to ROI and how you can avoid the
        same mistakes.

        Here are 3 times that responses did not equate to ROI, and what they can do differently:

        1. The wrong people responded

        Sometimes people just want to talk. That was one of our client’s realizations when they sent out a postcard campaign that saw a nearly 40% response rate. People of all socioeconomic strata and a great variety of backgrounds and professions took the time to hand-write responses to their postcards – many of them in monogrammed envelopes and some of them even several pages long. As the mail flooded in, our client at first thought it was too good to be true!

        In this case it was. What all these leads shared in common was that they were all retired. Our client had sent a postcard campaign to an area of California with a high density of retirement communities and nursing homes and very few (if any) of these letters denoted real buying interest. Many of them politely declined, but then proceeded on a different topic. They simply wanted to talk.

        The simple solution? Better targeting. With digital printing technology you can see this coming – you know where each of your postcards are going and you can adapt for next time to focus on only your ideal customers.

        2. The wrong customers bought

        Some customers are more demanding than others. One B2B client of ours discovered this in their mass postcard campaigns designed to open up a large, untouched segment of price-sensitive customers. Their three-touch postcard series worked, and they started to sign on more and more of these clients – the responses were there and the revenue was there. These clients paid. But they also took.

        They took, well, just about everything that they could get their hands on. These smaller customers had smaller teams, and their owners were stretched thin on resources to begin with, so they leaned heavily on our client’s open promise for unlimited support and clogged the phone lines day and night. In response, they were forced to hire more support staff to keep up.

        In the end, this was a money-losing proposition. Why? Because they reached the wrong customers! Generally, the larger the clients, the less hand-holding they’ll need, and with ProspectsPLUS’s targeting systems you can make sure that you’re only going after clients who are going to bring in the big bucks.

        3. The offer wasn’t mutually beneficial

        This last one came the closest to being successful – they got the high volume of consumer responses that they wanted, from people who might have been the right people, but in the end, their offer came back to bite them. This customer installs curtains, and they offered a $50 gift card to anyone who scheduled a home consultation using their postcard offer code. The phones positively rang off the hook.

        The only problem? When their sales reps stopped by, they were met with open doors but blank stares. No amount of free advice or decorating expertise could get them un-stuck from their avid desire for the gift card. Many people who otherwise would have been great leads were so fixated on the free gift that they paid no attention to the consultation and the sales conversions languished in the single digits.

        The solution? Predicate your offers on some sort of a give-get! Make your rebates applicable after some sort of a purchase or you’ll get a flood of well-meaning people who want free things but who were never going to buy to begin with.

        Ready to get some ROI on your responses?

        Responses, as you can see, are not everything. They’re an indicator, a mile marker that lets you know that you’re on the right track. What really matters however is new customers and your ROI, which needs to factor in not only what it cost to acquire those customers, but what it cost to maintain them.

        And there you have it, all of the warning you’ll need to make ROI your primary focus! Get out there and fire off your postcard campaigns with confidence today knowing that you properly targeted your audiences.

        Need a little help getting the right people to buy?

        Sometimes it’s great to run your plan by someone, and that’s why Opportunity Knocks is here. They’re experts in more than direct mail – they’ll consult you on your entire marketing strategy and then run it for you! Give them a call at 1 (866) 319-7109 to see what you can accomplish together.

          The power of repetition

          Have you ever met a super fit person who only visited the gym once?

          Have you ever met a great chef who’s only cooked one meal?

          What about a superb golfer who’s only shot one round?

          Yeah, us neither.

          So why the heck do businesses out there think that their marketing would be successful after only one or two postcard campaigns? Beats us.

          Like all things, practice and repetition make perfect.

          While practicing will help you get these 3 things right:

          • Audience
          • Offer
          • Design

          Repetition will help you conquer the fact that all of your customers are busy professionals, in or out of work. They’re husbands picking up their kids from lacrosse practice, they’re wives working long hours to advance their careers, and they’re neighbors trying to build thriving communities. Their attention is spread preciously thin, and you have to help them out by repeating your message.

          This is called the principle of effective frequency which states that:

          People need to be exposed to your brand message 5-7 times before purchasing. 

          What does that mean for those businesses who quit marketing after only 1 postcard campaign? after 2? after 4? They net only a fraction of the sales that they could have had. For those who stick with it however, it yields incredible results. Just ask some of the biggest brands on planet Earth who have found what works and stuck to it, repeating their messages millions of times until they became household names: (list courtesy of The Financial Brand)

          • Breakfast of Champions, in use for 89 years
          • Got Milk?, in use for 23 years
          • Just do it, in use for 29 years
          • What happens here, stays here, in use for 12 years
          • 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance, in use for 7 years

          This should be your aim as well: repeat your message until it really sinks in.

          What does this mean for your direct mail marketing?

          Actually, it means be less creative. That’s right, we said it: Stop changing your coloring, your branding, your images, and your font so much. Each time you make a major change, you start the shot-clock over again. Your customer has to remember a new you for the first time, and instead of 5-7 repetitions, you’re back to 1 or 2.

          Instead, tweak and edit your most effective campaigns to make them better: resize the tagline, bold the phone number, and change the stock photo, but leave the majority intact.

          Some of the most effective postcard marketing campaigns of all time were the same postcard sent over and over.

          Here are some rules of thumb for maximum effectiveness:

          1. Plan to send 5-7 postcards, and design and schedule them all at once
            (optional: have us design, stamp, and send it all for you)
          2. Target them at the same group of people
          3. Design them to be consistent with your branding and message
          4. Change them only slightly – maintain the overall logo, color scheme, and tagline
          5. Hit send, sit back and track the results

          Tracking the results is absolutely critical here because this is how you’re going to see the difference between the one-off “I got lucky” postcard campaigns and the sheer effectiveness of leveraging the effective frequency principle. Repeat it enough, they’ll hear it, and they’ll respond.

          Ready to start? Here’s the web-to-print platform. Go forth, repeat yourself, and set yourself apart as a truly great marketer!

          Need a helping hand?

          Opportunity Knocks can combine this principle with hundreds of others to create a series of killer marketing campaigns that drive home results! Call us at 1 (866) 319-7109 today!

            Doesn’t it seem like holiday marketing creeps forward every single year? We sure think it does.

            I mean, who isn’t at least a little bit offended when turkeys start appearing in July and Santa Claus starts making appearances in November?

            And yet, it’s a sort of cheer-filled arms race that you can’t afford not to be playing. Most businesses do almost one third of their annual sales during the holiday season alone. Customer attention overload also climaxes in late November and continues on into the new year and if you want to break through and make your sales numbers this year, you need to start generating some brand awareness pretty much right now!

            To that effect, we want to make it easy on you!

            Here are our holiday marketing tips for closing more sales in the busiest time of year:

            1. Gift reminders

            Does your product or service make a great gift? Remind people! One in three shoppers wait until the week of Christmas to do their shopping. You’ve probably been there, we all have: you don’t know what to get or you don’t have the time and before you know it, they’ve run out of stock.

            Do your customers a huge favor and help them lock their gifts in now, early, (perhaps for a discount) so that they can avoid the last minute buying madness! The best way to do this is to focus on the pain that this typical entails, like so:




            2. Holiday decorating tips

            If there’s anywhere that consumers can use help this season, it’s in making sure things run smoothly. With all of the family coming over and the need to coordinate plane tickets, spare bedrooms, meals, and more, your marketing can do them a big favor. Find a way to work your products or services into simplifying or streamlining the holiday bustle and they’ll love you for it. We’re talking about things like recipes, gift wrapping ideas, books for the plane ride, games for the family, music to play, house repair, and landscaping.

            3. Offer holiday related services

            A smart marketer realizes that they can turn just about anything into a compelling event, and the holidays are no exception. With so many people either using their home to gather the whole family or leaving it vacant to go back to someone else’s, there’s a lot that you can remind them not to forget. If you’re a landscaper, make sure that their house is safe and clear from widow-makers while they’re gone. If you’re a dentist, make sure that the kids’ teeth are galvanized against the onslaught of sugary goodies that are coming. If you’re a contractor, make sure that the house is ready to withstand the flood of slushy boots! There’s something for every business in here.




            4. Sweeten the deal with holiday offerings

            Help people get into the holiday spirit by giving your products or services a holiday twist – gift wrap purchases, hand out candy canes, give away toothbrushes, and color things in Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, or Christmas colors.

            5. Holiday count-down marketing

            If you’re really looking to stay top of mind, start a countdown. In some cases, this makes a lot of sense for sales that can’t happen early, like food, flowers, decorations, and travel. Use marketing postcards simply to lay the foundation for later sales!

            That season is just around the corner!

            Just like your shopping, don’t put off your holiday marketing until it’s too late. Pick up the phone and give us a jingle at 1 (877) 222-6010 and let’s get you set up for end of year success!

            If you really want a hands free holiday marketing plan, call up the experts at Opportunity Knocks, the sister company to ProspectsPLUS that will set all of your campaigns up for you!

              Bigger is different and different is better

              First off, do not read this article. Unless of course you want to learn some psychology that’s going to help you bring in new customers, that is. Today’s lesson is all about a powerful psychology lesson and the direct-mail service that helps you take advantage of it.

              Let’s pause for just a second before we start though – why did we start this article the way we did, with a warning not to read it?

              That’s what’s called a pattern interrupt and it’s designed to derail readers from their routine. You probably expected something like, “What you have to know about marketing is…” and when it was the opposite, you got curious. You paid attention.

              Pattern interrupts work because we as humans like to follow patterns. We get coffee at the same cafes, commute along the same routes, and respond to all marketing messages with a “no thanks” before we even know what they offer. We tune out most of what is happening and if you’re a business trying to break through, you have to break the cycle.

              You have to interrupt.

              In direct mail, there’s a service that offers precisely this: the Market Dominator.

              This isn’t just your regular old jumbo postcard. It’s a grand, glossy, place mat-sized mailing (12” x 15”) that positively begs the question: who sent this monstrosity?

              Here’s what it can look like:


              Or this:



              Here’s What The Market Dominator Produces:

              “The second Dominator mailing triggered the call. They had looked at several designers.  They visited our website and were pleased to see that we weren’t tied to any single style or design.

              The couple had moved often, but this was the place they wanted to settle and call home and they wanted it done right, irrespective of budget. They weren’t going to be happy unless they got exactly what they wanted.  

              This appt. resulted in a $165,000 sale!”

              The Mitschelen’s – Decorating Den Interiors, Miami, FL

              When people receive a Market Dominator card, their usual mail-sorting pattern is completely interrupted. This mailing doesn’t even fit in their hand, no matter how they arrange it all; there’s simply no avoiding looking at it. Add onto this a massive and stunning stock photo and you have yourself a guaranteed positive impression.

              It’s also big enough for these other added benefits:

              • You can both include a large visual AND fully explain what you do
              • You can include tear-out coupons for other services so that you kill two birds with one stone
              • You can include a map of other customers around them who have purchased recently

              It’s a lot of real-estate to work with and its novelty is its key to success:

              It interrupts patterns and gets recipients to consider you. 

              Of course it’s more expensive than your standard postcard, but it’s also vastly most effective. Do you know if it’s effective for you? There’s really only one way to find out, and that’s to ask the customer success team who sees them go out every day.

              Call them at 1 (877) 222-6010 or hop on over to our website and send a sample!

              Or, if you’re busy and want us to do it for you, call Opportunity Knocks. They’re a white-glove marketing service that turns your ideas into customers like magic. Call them at 1 (866) 319-7109!

                What’s the biggest danger to your sales? Is it the competition? The economy? Sharks?

                None of the above!

                The answer lies within your own office: it’s inconsistent marketing. Not sticking to a marketing plan is at the heart of every great marketing failure, from the miniature to the massive. This is because marketing messages and campaigns compound upon each other and when you give it a rest, leads that were close to calling go cold.

                Think about it. When you give up after a few campaigns because you’re not seeing success, it’s like giving up on heating water because it never came to a boil. The next time you return to it, it will be cold, and you’ll be starting over from scratch. You’ll have dropped from your prospective customers’ radar and have lost warm leads to the competition.

                “Don’t let this happen” is much easier said than done, we know, so here’s our 7 step foolproof consistency strategy for you to try out!

                The 7 step steady-seller marketing plan:

                1. Keep it simple: Over complicated marketing plans are easily abandoned when the going gets rough. Cut your plan down to the minimum-viable necessary campaigns and channels. If you can’t measure the results of something, cut it.
                2. Keep it visible: Print out your simple marketing plan and post it somewhere visible in a public and highly trafficked area in your office. This keeps it top of mind and keeps you motivated to be consistent with the public plan.
                3. Create things in batches: Somewhat like shifting gears on the freeway, starting and stopping your marketing writing and creation causes a lot of friction. When you hop to something else, you start over in first gear. Instead, set aside blocks of several hours and channel all of that genius at once. Write all of your emails, blog posts, and postcard copy in contiguous sessions.
                4. Automate everything: You want to make the process as streamlined and effortless as possible, and much of the technology is completely free. Use your calendar to set reminders to create content, use your email system to schedule emails ahead of time, and set your postcard campaigns up with multiple sends so that you can get it all done at once and then sit back for the remainder of the month. You can go even further and trigger postcards off of events like birthdays, purchase anniversaries, and new homeowner arrivals.
                5. Re-purpose good content: This is where laziness and genius start to converge: you can actually start to accomplish more by doing less through re-using successful taglines and images. It gives your marketing consistency and it becomes more memorable through repetition.
                6. Measure your results: Nothing will train you to keep up your marketing like seeing the positive impact of your efforts. By asking every customer how they found you and tracing online and postcard leads back to their origins you can make the connection between effort and payoff tangible and the process more fun.
                7. Stick to your plan! The best way to create accountability around your marketing plan is get someone’s help in keeping you honest. Find a business partner, spouse, or friend and give them some amount of money to donate to a charity that you dislike if you fail to keep it up.

                What do consistent people get to see? The water boiling over with leads of course! It doesn’t take very long to get excited and realize that a continuous marketing effort is the surest way to generate the consistent sales that you need.

                Take 15 minutes to get your quick win out of the way for today and fire off a 3-touch postcard marketing campaign; Even borrow our images to get it done!

                Want a coach to keep you honest?

                The ultimate form of consistent marketing is letting someone do it all for you. Call Opportunity Knocks today at 1 (866) 319-7109 to set up your free evaluation and calculate the ROI total freedom!

                  The key difference between marketing and advertising

                  What’s the difference between marketing and advertising? Quite simply, marketing is about compelling immediate action and advertising is about generating positive impressions. Marketing drives people to pick up the phone while advertising helps them remember jingles. Ads typically are best in glossy magazine pages and on billboards whereas marketing is most effective on postcards and in emails.

                  Both of them have their place, and as a small business owner looking to drive more sales, you should certainly be doing both.

                  But when should you be doing which?

                  When it comes to direct mail marketing, you actually don’t have to choose. You can use Jumbo-sized mailings to obtain enough real estate to comfortably do both, and kill two birds with one stone. Make your mailings beautiful, memorable, and catchy, while simultaneously driving an immediate buying response. Here’s an example of a postcard that does this well:


                  With this Jumbo postcard 3:2 ratio layout, we achieve a clear advertisement on the left side with a marketing message on the right.

                  For the ad portion, they used the company’s color scheme, an emotionally evocative picture of a delighted customer, and the theme of unveiling beautiful, nearly magical jewelry. It exudes starry-eyed excitement and conveys the emotions that we want associated with the product.

                  On the marketing side, they get right to the point with a compelling message. They used a rhetorical question, “How will you show your devotion?” to engage their readers in active thinking, they repeated the company name more than once, and of course they made sure that the call to action (CTA) was abundantly clear and involved a sense of urgency. Will time really run out to schedule an appointment? Only you, the business owner, knows for sure, but that doubt inspires readers to immediate action.

                  Together they make an ideal one-two punch for your postcards! The ad is memorable and thematic and the marketing is compelling and actionable.

                  More reasons to love Jumbo postcards

                  Another benefit to Jumbo postcards is that their unusual size makes them additionally impactful: they’re higher visibility, the pictures are larger, there’s more room to work with, and they exude a novelty factor that increases the time that recipients spend with them by 15-20%.

                  Plus, you don’t need anything to get started with our free templates and carefully selected stock photos!

                  Ready to create your own?

                  Here’s our 30-second guide on things you can include:

                  • Limit the total amount of text to 75 words or less
                  • Beautiful or striking advertising image
                  • A color scheme consistent with your brand
                  • A theme that ties it all together
                  • A tagline, like “Make the night unforgettable”
                  • A rhetorical question to get people thinking
                  • A clear CTA with a phone number
                  • Urgency – tell them why the offer won’t last
                  • Your business name and or logo

                  Hop into our web-to-print platform or call 1 (877) 222-6010 and get yours rolling off the presses today!

                  Need a little help from the experts?

                  Opportunity Knocks is only a click or a quick phone call away at 1 (866) 319-7109! They specialize in bespoke marketing and advertising campaigns that are guaranteed to help you land new customers.

                    Who wants to be more like a car dealer?

                    We sure do!

                    You probably hesitated to respond just now, and we can understand that. Very likely, the image that your brain conjured up was one of a red-faced used car salesman in a checkered suit trying to sweet talk you into a deal. That’s the old-school car dealer however. The new ones have been forced to adapt and change with the times and they look very different. They’ve become less salesy and more tech savvy.

                    Despite popular belief, car dealers are selling on slimmer margins than ever before and often times sell cars at a loss because of fierce competition. Those that have survived have had to maximize their use of digital and relationship marketing to continue to find more and more sales, and today we’ll share everything that you as a small business owner can learn from them!

                    5 Lessons we can all learn from car dealers:

                    1. Adapt to what’s new: When your industry gets turned on its head by an economic collapse, you have to adapt to new models and new markets. You have to take time to understand all of the ways that people find you and adopt those channels. This is how dealerships have shifted away from radio ads and TV spots to a digital-first approach via e-commerce stores, eBay and Craigslist listings, online review sites, and digital ads.

                    You’ll know that you’re in danger of falling behind if you catch yourself saying, “I don’t believe in this (insert new technology here) thing.” The internet was also once just a flash-in-the-pan trend, but look at it now!

                    1. Use your Google business listing: Local advertising is all of the rage because when consumers look for local services, they type in a keyword like “plumbing, roofing, or painting” along with the name of their city. Google now responds to those queries with a map and a list of local businesses as the top result. As 91.5% of people never look beyond the first page of results, you should create your Google page to be listed there! Car dealers know this and spend plenty of time on their Google Business profiles.














                    1. Manage your reviews: Car dealers know that today, word of mouth means something different than it did twenty years ago. We’ve moved beyond simply asking for recommendations from close friends and family members and 88% of consumers trust social recommendations from mere acquaintances. Car dealers thus know that the best way to build trust (and that’s been plenty lacking the public perception of car dealerships) is to deliver great service and actively ask happy customers for great reviews! The Better Business Bureau (BBB) will even let you respond to and resolve complaints to clean up
                      your history!

                    Here are a few of the top ones to pay attention to: 

                    • BBB
                    • Yelp
                    • TripAdvisor
                    1. Direct Mail Reminders: Top car salesman know that it’s still all about the relationship and the most lucrative deals are from repeat customers. A young couple buying a car isn’t a one-time win: it’s the potential to also sell a minivan and then several used sedans when the kids are old enough to get behind the wheel. Savvy car salesman also know that they can fully automate this process of keeping in touch so that they can focus on prospecting, which is why they rely heavily on digital direct mail which sends automatic postcards on people’s birthdays or the “birthday” of the car. It keeps you top of mind for little additional effort.
                    1. Go for the referrals: Even in this day and age, car dealers still focus on referral business. They know that the quality of any given lead varies dramatically depending on its source and the highest quality ones are still direct recommendations. Good car dealerships do more than just provide a business card: They close out their transactions (whether you buy or not) by asking if you know three people looking to buy car and ask for an introduction. If they provided great service and can offer a deal, that’s something you can pass along to a friend to help them save money. It’s a winning cycle of value, and you should be doing this with all of your customers. Always ask for three referrals!

                    Learning to deal like a dealership

                    The car dealers that are thriving are leveraging more than just one of these tactics: they’re using all of them! They are listening carefully to how customers are finding them so that they can optimize their online profiles, they’re curating their reviews, and they’re asking for referrals to maximize the value of each customer interaction. All of these are equally potent for your business and they’re great reminders of what you should be doing to get the word out and attract more sales!

                    Ready to begin on the easiest and quickest wins?

                    Go to Google to open your business listing, log into the BBB’s website to register your business and see your reviews, and set up automatic postcard reminders for your client’s birthdays and holidays to keep in touch and leverage the long-term relationship!

                    Need help getting up to speed?

                    Nobody can get you from 0 to 60 faster than Opportunity Knocks – they’re a top-caliber agency that’s like adding turbo-fuel to your marketing mix. Just tell them how many new customers you want and watch
                    them work!

                      When quality makes a difference

                      Have you ever heard the phrase, “potato quality?”

                      It’s a joke popularized by YouTube commenters about the quality of videos taken. Whereas excellent, high-resolution videos or photos typically receive questions like, “Very nice, was this taken with a Canon DSLR?” Jokesters ask the same question but replace the camera with something inanimate and, well, not very good at taking photos, such as socks, blenders, or of course, a potato.

                      As in, “Great photo, was this taken with a potato?”

                      For example, a classic potato-quality photo that we’re all familiar with:


                      It can be very funny, but all the humor drains out of it immediately when that photo is part of one of your marketing campaigns. We see tens of thousands of photos headed for the direct mail presses that are blurry, out of focus, off-topic, have a grainy resolution, and look like they were taken with a potato, and we can’t halt them all, but we certainly try.

                      It’s a fact that a great deal of your marketing success is dependent upon your visual elements. Xerox estimates that customers are 80% more likely to engage if the photo is high quality. Photos should tell a story that compliments your marketing and provides a visual metaphor that compels people to take action. Terrible photos do just the opposite – they reflect poorly upon the sender and tank your ROI!

                      We’ve thus written up this 3-minute guide so that you know how to achieve the greatest success with your postcard marketing!

                      The 5-step process to taking great photos:

                      1. Camera: To take a great marketing photo, you’re going to need a camera that can’t be chopped up and served as fries. Ten years ago it was necessary to purchase an expensive, bulky DSLR camera to achieve top quality but most smartphones can produce high enough quality and resolution to do the job!
                      2. Subject: Next you’ll need your subject. Of everything on this list, the subject takes the most consideration because you have so many options. Do you photograph your storefront? Do you snap a shot of employees at work? Very likely, the best thing you can do is to photograph your finished product. People will buy from you because they’re trying to solve a problem, whether that’s needing food for dinner or having a well-repaired roof. Show them exactly what they can expect, including, if possible, a happy customer! Here are some examples.


                      1. Composition: Capturing your subject in the best possible light (no pun intended) also takes a little consideration.  High noon is typically the worst time because it casts harsh shadows whereas dusk is ideal because it shines with softer light. For indoors, proper lights should be numerous but indirect, so as not to cast shadows.

                      When lining up the shot, think about the rule of threes (see below), where you divide the screen up into thirds and place the subject at one of the four intersecting points. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but it works a lot of the time. If you’re thinking of taking the photo from an angle, try to go for more extreme ones, as they’ll be more interesting.

                      The rule of threes: By dividing the photo into thirds each direction, we get four points on which to line up the subject.


                      1. File Size: Once you have the right image, make sure that it’s the right size for uploading, and at the very least, 5.75” by 4.5” (just larger than a standard printed photo). In terms of pixels on your computer, that translates to at least 740 by 580. Larger is always better, but there’s no reason for it to exceed three times that size.
                      2. Final Edit: Test what you’ve come up with on a few friends or co-workers. Does it grab them? Do they understand what you’re trying to get across without any explanation? If not, it’s not the right image! You have one chance to hook people’s attention with your marketing, and you’ll see the highest ROI with better images. If you can’t seem to come up with what you’re looking for, there’s no shame in using a stock image account.

                      Choosing the finalist

                      Follow these 5 steps and you’re well on your way to better marketing pictures! Better pictures mean more responses and more responses mean more sales! Channeling your inner photographer can have benefits on your bottom line, and practice with these makes perfect.

                      Want to see how your images look on a postcard?

                      Log into our web-to-print platform and upload your own to try them out! If you need help, our customer success team is dying to help out at 1 (877) 222-6010!

                      Need help from someone who’s reviewed 10,000 photos?

                      Opportunity Knocks marketing is a sister company to ProspectsPLUS that specializes in white-glove campaigns where they’ll select the best photos for the highest impact! Give them a call at 1 (866) 319-7109 and talk to them today!