Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Double Your Ad's Response By Appealing to Both Types of Buyers

Most advertisers are losing half their buyers immediately by being guilty of one of the most common advertising sins committed by the majority of marketers today. If you will fix this one common blunder in your own advertising projects you will certainly double your ad's response!

There are two types of buyers: Analytical and Impulsive. Studies have shown that consumers are evenly split between these two types; therefore you must prepare your ads and sales letters to appeal to BOTH these consumer types if you want to reach everybody.

Let’s look at these two types of buyers:

ANALYTICAL BUYER: The analytical buyer will only buy after being presented with lots of information. He must have all the details in order to make a buying decision. To reach this kind of buyer YOU MUST GIVE HIM LOTS OF COPY TO READ!

IMPULSIVE BUYER: The impulsive buyer will read only the headlines, subheads and bullets. He’s in a hurry and is not willing to read all the “boring details.” He gets excited easily and wants to get quickly to the bottom line. You must make your advertisment a fast easy read for him. To reach his type, make sure your offer is understood quickly and completely by simply reading the BULLETS, HEADLINES AND SUBHEADS.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


A few weeks ago I told you that the biggest mistake made by most self-advertisers is when they place the name of their company or logo at the top of their ad, rather than to use that valuable space for a powerful, eye-popping, response-pulling, headline. Here are 17 things you can do:

1. Target the right prospect. Attention: Collision Shop Owners on a tight budget”

2. Make a big promise. “We Will Guarantee Your Installations Costs!!”

3. Offer a big benefit. “Save 50% or more off list”

4. Solve a problem. “Losing money because your bids are too high? We have the perfect solution!”

7. Use the word “FREE”. “Free delivery”, “Free Technical Support”, “Free Mug”.

8. Use Passion. “We won’t be undersold!!”, “I Guarantee it!”, “You have my word!”.

9. Push emotional buttons. Fear, Greed, Lust, Hate, Love, Compassion, Revenge.

10. Compel the reader to read the rest of the story. “Bill Whitson saved $46,597.00 on used parts last year, here’s how.”

10. Stop the prospect and make them act now.

“2 Free Packers Tickets to The first 50 who call”

11. Ask a question. “Got Milk?”

12. Use the power of curiosity. “Why are these people smiling?”

13. Offer a reward. “$50 Finder Fee paid for wrecked cars.”

14. Use attention-getting words. “Secrets”, “Easy”, “How to”, “Warning”, Public Notice”.

15. Make a shocking statement. “If the parts are late, they’re free!”

16. News like quality: “Innovative auto parts recycler announces new revolutionary parts delivery system”

17. Use Apples to Oranges comparisons:

“Like a Rock”

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Have you ever noticed how many times the number seven shows up in advertising? Well, it’s not by accident. Studies have shown that the number seven has a powerful pulling power with people. If you were to ask an audience to pick a number between one and ten, odds are good that a large number in the group would choose the number seven.

You can use the number seven advantage in your company and create helpful lists to include in your ads. An ad for the yellow pages might read, “7 Things you MUST know before buying used parts.” Or, you could print helpful installation tips to give with certain purchases such as, “7 Tips on Installing Your New Engine.”

Always be thinking of ways to provide information to your customers and prospects. It’s an easy way to increase their perceived value of your company, products and services.

A few weeks ago I told you that the biggest mistake made by most self-advertisers is when they place the name of their company or logo at the top of their ad, rather than to use that valuable space for a powerful, eye-popping, response-pulling, headline. Next tip, I’ll tell you 17 easy things you can do to create “headline magic.”

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


At right is an idea for co-op advertising. I got the inspiration for it from a display ad I saw in an airline magazine while returning from a recycler’s conference.

The headline at the top of the original ad said,“The Greatest Steakhouses of North America.” Below the headline was a list of steakhouses along with their addresses. At the bottom of the ad was a smaller headline that said, “The last of the great independents! The owner/operators, who not only give fine beef, but their hearts as well.” At the bottom was a seal with a blurb “The independent cattleman’s association.”

The steakhouse ad looked like an independent recommendation, but actually it’s nothing more than a clever co-op ad, each participant pays a share (sharing with others can save you a bundle!). This is an implied endorsement ad. This idea could work for any industry and could even work for automotive recycler’s across the county or for co-ops within the same state or district. Or, it could even work for different types of businesses who want to work together. The possibilities are endless. To use this idea for parts recyclers, see the mock-up using the same concept at top right. The headline is now changed to: “Superior Used Auto Parts Providers of North America”. Members are listed below the headline, and the smaller headline at the bottom is changed to read, “The Great Independents: Top auto & truck parts providers who give the best quality, service & value. “ The association's name and seal are at the bottom. All the basic ad dynamics used in the original steakhouses ad have been used to create an entirely new ad for automotive recyclers.

Have you ever noticed that certain numbers show up repeatedly in advertising? Well, it’s not by accident. Next tip, I’ll tell you how to use one such number to add powerful pulling power to any advertising campaign.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


With all the new competition coming into the used parts arena, I have gotten calls from clients concerned about how to keep up with the competition’s coupon offers. If you’re concerned about this, you can do what most major grocery stores, electronic stores, and a few other shrewd business owners are doing, and that is to accept the competitors’ coupons. This puts all their advertising to work for you. And if you are really gutsy, and can afford to do it, DOUBLE the value of competitors’ coupons that you redeem! This will stop them dead in their tracks.

Next tip, I will tell you how to create an “Implied Endorsement” ad. This little secret can save you a bundle

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Probably the biggest mistake made by do-it-yourself advertisers is that they use the name of their company as a big headline. The truth of the matter is, unless you’ve already spent tons of money on brand recognition (like Coca Cola did), your company name sells nothing. The best ads use a great big customer benefit as the main headline. It should always answer the question, “what’s in it for me” from the customer standpoint.

Here are some examples of small ads I’ve seen recently using a great headline instead of a big company name. The company name was at the bottom of each ad along with important contact information: “Headsets Half Price!” - “Business Class Lowest Fares on the Planet!” - “Windshields At Your Home Or Work, $125 Cash Back” - “Lowest Hotel Rates!” and “Managers/Professionals $30,000 to $300,000.”

Next tip, I will tell you how to turn your competitor’s coupon campaign around to become your own strategic advantage -- it will drive them crazy!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Another ad making formula you see used often is called “Before and After Comparison.” There are lots of examples of ads using this formula. You see this type of advertising used often by the weight loss industry. In most cases the “after” picture looks dramatically better than the “before” picture. It’s interesting that the people rarely smile in the “before” pictures. It’s part of the “make-them-look-better-in-the-after-picture” plan.

This type of advertising is very powerful and can be used effectively in many different types of industries. It can even be used to sell used parts. A parts provider might use this formula by showing a car repaired with one of his front clips. The pictures on the ad could show the wrecked car on the left and the repaired car on the right. The headline with the ad might say: This car was repaired with recycled original factory parts from E & Z’s Used Auto Parts! Can you spot the difference? The difference is only in the price paid for parts!

Next tip, I will tell you what is probably the biggest mistake made by do-it-yourself advertisers. You must avoid this killer mistake.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


The last few marketing tips have been on the subject of using the above tried and proven marketing formula to design advertising for your company. Here is how an auto parts provider might use this formula to create an ad.

Let’s say a common problem for your customers (I’m making this up) might be that they can’t get repair jobs turned around fast enough because of slow parts delivery, and this is causing them to lose business daily. Furthermore, let’s say that they are facing continuous down times while waiting for their replacement parts to arrive. These constant down times are causing them to pay employees for standing around waiting for parts.

So, simply put, the big problem: Slow parts delivery is causing big problems, much pain and worry. Next, you create an ad to point out the problem, agitate the problem and then solve it using your products and services. Here’s how:

You create an ad (could be a direct mail piece) showing a man with a worried look on his face and a big headline above him that boldly proclaims the problem: ARE YOU LOSING MONEY & CUSTOMERS BECAUSE YOU CAN’T GET PARTS DELIVERED TO YOU FAST?

Then you agitate the problem: You could be in great danger of going out of business if you can’t get replacement parts IMMEDIATELY when you need them! You could go broke paying your employees for standing around waiting for the parts you need!

Then you give the solution (which is your products and services): Stop losing customers and hard earned profits! ANNOUNCING!! In Stock Parts Delivered to Your Door in 30 Minutes or Less, or They’re FREE! No more down time! No more lost customers! Call for parts, NOW! (555) 555-5555

Next week, I’ll explain another ad making formula you see used often by marketing gurus. You can use it to, and should!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010



Now, here’s how you can use this formula in designing your own ads. The first step is to identify a common problem your customers are very concerned (even worried sick) about. Don’t guess about this; actually go to the trouble to find out. How do you do this? Ask them! You want to find out what keeps them awake at night with their eyes wide open, staring up at the ceiling in a cold sweat. Next, discover (or create) a way for your products and services to solve their big problem. Remember the big selling secret: you are selling solutions to problems.

Next marketing tip I’ll give an example of this formula being used to sell auto parts.

Monday, October 25, 2010



You see this formula used often. A good example is The TV ad for nail-fungus medication. The ad begins by pointing out the problem and then agitates it by showing an embarrassed victim burying his ugly infected toes in the sand. Finally, they give the solution, which is, of course, their medicine and what it can do. The “victim” now fully recovered, is playing on the beach, smiling, happy, proud, free of the ugly embarrassment.

Next marketing tip I’ll explain how to create your own ad with this formula.

Monday, October 18, 2010


Marketing (selling) is more than guesswork it is science. There are some tried and proven marketing formulas that will consistently work. What this means is that if you do exactly the same presentation x-number of times you can predictably produce y-number of results. When you go into a selling (persuasion situation) of any kind, it is just plain crazy to resort to guessing. If you are serious about getting results from your advertising efforts, you must study and learn selling fundamentals and selling formulas.

There are lots of selling formulas. Here are two common ones:

(1) “Problem - Agitate the Problem - Solution,”

(2) “Before and After Persuasion.”

I will discuss each of them in the next two marketing tips

Monday, October 11, 2010



There are lots of different ways to design coupon offers. You can offer money off such as, “$25 off any Transmission.” Or you can offer a percentage off such as, “10% off any Engine.”

You can offer something for free with a purchase, such as, “Get a FREE T-Shirt with any purchase,” or, “Get a FREE Dinner & Movie with the purchase of any front clip.” You get the idea.

Then there are a multitude of combinations: “Buy one and get one free.” Or the same deal only stated differently, “Get two for the price of one.” Or, “Buy two and get one free,” or even “Buy three and get the fourth one free,” etc., etc.”

Then there are other “apples/oranges” combinations, which means, if they buy one thing they get a different item at a discount, such as, “Buy Any Front Clip and receive 50% off any pair of doors” (or whatever).

Did you know there are proven ad building formulas that will consistently work every time you use them? Next week I’ll tell you about two of them.

Monday, October 4, 2010


Remember, a big part of having your coupon on the outside of your mailer is to be seen easily by those sorting their mail over the trash. A way to get around this problem, if you must locate your coupon inside, is to announce the coupon with some teaser copy or a “flash” on the outside that says something like, “See Money Saving Coupons Inside!”

Next tip, I’ll tell you how to design coupon offers.

Monday, September 27, 2010



Track your response and capture the names of coupon users by placing the coupon on the verso (backing) page from the mailing label. If you do this, every coupon returned will have the name and address of those who turned them in. This works well for postcard type mailers but is not always best for multi-page mailers where the coupon would end up inside the publication and out of sight to the receiver.

Next tip, I’ll tell you what to do if you find that you MUST locate your coupons on the inside of your mailer. You can still make them work for you!

Monday, September 20, 2010


Discount coupons can dramatically improve your advertising project response rate, but only if they are designed correctly. Here are some tips on how to make them work for you:

1. Make coupons look like coupons. Put a thick dashed-line around them (or around the entire ad), so there is no confusion. Avoid fancy borders and certificate type borders.

2. Make the offer the main focus. If the offer is “$25 Off” make sure the “$25 Off” is the biggest thing they see. Don’t make it hard to see the good deal by making your offer obscure.

3. Make it obvious that the coupon should be clipped. Place an icon of scissors near the top left-hand corner of the border.

4. Include a graphic (or picture) of the item being offered

Next ad tip, I’ll give you a coupon placement hint that will dramatically improve your ability to track response.

Monday, September 13, 2010


Seasoned marketers know that only three percent of those who clip coupons actually remember to redeem them at the point of purchase. For this reason, some business owners actually count on their coupons not being used, and include coupons only for the purpose of making their ads “keepers.”

That’s not the best thinking from a marketing standpoint, however, because coupon redeemers represent rewarded, satisfied, happy customers that will come back and buy repeatedly. Don’t forget, too, that each coupon represents an actual sale made, and the more of them the better!

Smart business owners want their coupons to be used and see the cost of them as part of their customer acquisition program. It’s a part of the much bigger picture of growing a healthy business. Therefore, they design coupons with great offers to get used. They use them to “buy” new customers, make them happy, give them a pleasant buying experience, and then entice (reward) them to come back and buy again and again and again and again ...” (you get the picture).

Discount coupons can dramatically improve your advertising project response rate, but only if they are designed correctly. Next tip, I’ll give you some simple methods you can use to make them work for you.

Monday, August 30, 2010


You see coupons everywhere, in every type of business. Consumers clip and use them, and they must be a part of your advertising, too. But, here’s the BIG secret about coupons . . . (Shhhhhhh) . . . most people forget to use them at the time of purchase. For proof of this look at your refrigerator, if you’re like most consumers, you’ve got a pizza ad there with the coupons still attached at the bottom, but you’ve ordered pizza several times!

So why use coupons if people forget to redeem them? First, people sort their mail over the trashcan and attractive coupons with valuable offers keep your mailers from going there. Second, coupons used as a part of magazine & newspaper-display-ads do attract attention and get clipped. Basically, coupons make your ads “keepers.” People really do intend to use them, and some will pick up the phone and call you to place an order. But, at the point of purchase most simply forget to redeem the coupon. Incidentally, the national average of coupon redemption is a meager 3%.

So, what should YOUR thinking be about designing coupons that will actually get used? Next tip, I’ll tell you how smart business owners think.

Monday, August 23, 2010


Do you know the value of your customers? You MUST! Most are busy trying to get NEW customers without understanding that it is less expensive and more rewarding to keep a customer than to get a new one.

To start, you will need to know the average sale per customer, the average number of times per year they purchase, and how many years an average relationship lasts. You may not know the exact amount of the acquisition and maintenance costs, but I recommend estimating on the high side. The number of referrals will vary over the life of a customer based on the industry.


- Average Sale: $100

- One sale per month for a year: $1,200.00

- 10 years average relationship: $12,000.00

- Acquisition cost: less $100 = $11,900.00 remaining

- Maintenance cost: less $100 = $11,800.00 remaining

- 5 referrals and their value - $59,000.00

Those who really understand the Lifetime Value of their existing customers will work the hardest on customer retention, customer service programs and they will do a lot to stay in touch and reward their existing customers. Do YOU?

You see coupons everywhere, in every type of business. Consumers clip and use them, and they must be a part of your advertising, too. But, there’s a BIG secret about coupons that you don’t know. Next tip, I’ll tell you the secret!

Monday, August 16, 2010


Direct response marketing guru, Dan Kennedy, points out what your thinking should be regarding your advertising objectives. Objectives should be:

1. To attract immediate, measurable response (affordably).

2. To sell or directly, measurably lead to the sale of products and services (profitably).

3 To clearly and memorably communicate a marketing message engineered only to facilitate #1 and/or #2.

4. Possibly to “set up” additional, future response from follow-up advertising or marketing (as a secondary dividend).

5. Possibly to ad to name/brand identity (as a third dividend.)

Do you know the value of your customers? You MUST! Most are busy trying to get NEW customers without understanding that it is less expensive and more rewarding to keep a customer than to get a new one. Next tip, I’ll give you a formula that will determine a customer’s true lifetime value. You are going to be SHOCKED!!

Monday, August 9, 2010


Your employee photos are sending subliminal messages! This is known as body language and it is sending a message all by itself that most people will subconsciously pick up on -- it could affect their buying decision.

Here’s the rule to remember: When a subject is leaning toward the viewer, he appears more dynamic, more assertive, more positive, and appears to have a leadership quality. On the other hand, if he is leaning away he appears just the opposite, and if his head is cocked to the right he appears insincere, unsure of himself, less intelligent, and even unprofessional -- all this because of poor cropping. Most don’t know this secret however; so don’t feel bad if you’ve missed it until now.

Next tip, what your thinking should be regarding your advertising objectives.

Monday, August 2, 2010


Remember the rules for designing a direct response ad that is more than a tax deduction (in other words, it works!):

1. You MUST STOP your prospects with a compelling self-interest headline.

2. You MUST Hold their interest through the entire copy.

3. You MUST create desire by offering them as many benefits as possible.

4. You Must prove that your offer is filled with value.

5. You MUST make it easy for your prospects to act.

6. You MUST give your prospect a reason to act immediately!

7. You MUST eliminate your buyers fear by giving them a strong guarantee!

Your employee photos are sending subliminal messages! Most people will subconsciously pick up on these messages -- it could affect their buying decision. Next tip, I’ll tell you how to spot them and what you must do.

Monday, July 26, 2010


If so, you can change one simple thing and make more money. According to two studies by Incomm Center for Trade Show Research, Chicago, Ilinois:

- 65% of visitors to booths during the last half hour of shows are the best prospects, versus 12%-20% during peak traffic times.

- 68% of 250 salespeople interviewed said they met a good prospect during the final half hour of the exhibit day. And 21% made a sale from a lead they got in the last half hour.

- 93% of attendees said no salespeople were on duty at one or more booths they visited during the last half hour of the show.

So, it’s simple! Don’t tear down or leave early. Instead, pay special attention to booth visitors during the last half hour of the show.

Next tip, I’ll give you seven rules your must fullow, for designing a direct response ad, if you want your ad to be more than a tax deduction (in other words, it works!)

Monday, July 19, 2010


According to a study at the Food & Brand Lab at the University of Illinois at Champaign, shoppers will buy more of a product if you put a number on the sign next to it. The study looked at 43 different kinds of signs in four locations around the country. Researchers found that signs with high purchase limits - “Limit 12 per customer” - boosted buying. Suggestive signs- “Buy 12 for the weekend” - and those with multiple-unit prices - “Buy 3 for $3” - also increased sales.

Do you have a trade show booth? If so, you can change one simple thing to make more money. Next tip, I’ll explain.

Monday, July 12, 2010


Do you know where you stand in the mind of your market place? Here’s how to find out.

McDonalds has let it be known that its hamburger stands have sold twelve times as many hamburgers as the world has people. (WOW!).

By the way, an on-the-street-survey asking folks rapid fire direct response questions: “When I give a word, you tell me the first thing that pops into your head . . . “Up” (common answer, down) . . . “Black” (common answer, white) . . . “Hamburger” (common answer, McDonalds!!). That’s what’s known as great positioning. Try the same test in your market area and throw in the words “Auto Parts” and see if your name pops up. If it doesn’t, you may have a positioning problem in your marketing area. The right kind of marketing will fix it!

In a study done by the University of Illinois, it was discovered that you could do something very simple to increase the buying power of those reading your signs. Next tip, I’ll explain.

Monday, July 5, 2010


According to medical scholars, these five things worry people most: Their work, health, conflicts, children and finances (not necessarily in this order). One of the big secrets in direct response marketing is a formula called “E-factors Multiplied Equals Response”. The “E” in “E-factors” stands for Emotions. What this means is simply this, the more emotions you can involve in your advertising, the greater the response. Boring advertising with no emotional triggers is one of the common reasons advertising fails. An exercise worth mentioning is this. Find out what keeps your customers awake at night. Address this “problem” in your advertising, with your products and services as the solution. Example Headline: Stop worrying about money! With the 50% or more you save on our recycled auto parts, you can pay off those bills, pay off that mortgage, buy that new boat and go on that dream vacation!

Constantly be looking for ways to solve your customer’s emotional problems with your ads.

Did you know that McDonald’s has a little “on the street” test that they do to find out where they stand in the mind of their marketplace? Next tip I’ll tell you how to use the same method for your company.