“Doing business without advertising is like trying to fly without wings!”
—Walter Burch

Imagine discovering a proven way to sell or market your product or service that consistently provides the opportunity to analyze the return on your advertising investment.  Imagine harnessing the power of a marketing method that generates immediate results, that is cost efficient and that is always accountable.  Imagine a dynamic venue in the advertising industry that is so popular and growing so fast that virtually any product that is being sold today can benefit from this unique form of advertising and marketing.  It’s called Direct Marketing!

Why is it growing so fast?  Because it has so many facets and applications.  It’s maximum marketing.  It’s cost efficient.  It supports and is supported by all other types of advertising.   It is a form of advertising that has many criteria:  It asks for the order, usually in the form of a toll-free 800 telephone number, website or address.  It is direct response advertising, which includes advertising on television, radio, the internet or in the print media.  It is mail-order advertising which includes catalogs and credit card syndication.  It is also network marketing, direct mail, catalog sales, home shopping via television, the internet and much more.

“If you have a great product or service and a strong message and compelling offer for your target audience – why would you want to limit yourself to one direct marketing channel and a single revenue stream when you can take advantage of all the marketing channels of the Electronic Goldmine?  It’s all about maximizing profits and minimizing risk.”

By the year 2010, it is estimated that as high as 70% of all the products advertised, in one form or another, will have some direct marketing application and over $500 billion will be generated from the powerful and proven methods of Direct Marketing.

“The potential of Direct Marketing is truly mind-boggling – especially when you factor in the incredible growth and acceptance of the Internet – and online sales and merchandising.”

Not to be overlooked is the phenomenal success of the home shopping channels on various cable outlets such as Home Shopping Network and QVC, which are generating several billion dollars in sales revenues every year -- confirming the fact that today’s consumers are much more willing to purchase products from their kitchen table, their living room, or from their computer than ever before.  This trend, when put into graphic form, looks like the trajectory of the space shuttle. 

“Direct Marketing, for most companies that need advertising to promote their product or service, represents the most cost-efficient method of marketing and the only way to get immediate measurable results!”

There are some consumers who will not buy a product from television, but they will respond to the same offer in a magazine ad or a direct mail piece.  They may have seen the Infomercial or DRTV spot, which planted a seed, but they didn’t take action until the product offer appeared in a medium they’re more comfortable with (trust).  In order to maximize results of the television campaign, I always recommend direct response print ads in a variety of national magazines and newspapers that reach a demographic audience which is compatible with my client’s target consumer.

Direct Mail also includes the “J” word—junk mail (catalogs and direct mail pieces).  In 200, an estimated $65 billion was spent on catalog purchases alone.  People do read catalogs and direct mail pieces,  and obviously respond quite favorably.  As I’ve pointed out, not all people trust television offers, yet some of them will buy the very same offer from a direct mail piece or mail order catalog.  Again, they may have seen the DRTV campaign, which planted a seed.  Through mail order, that seed is harvested. 

Credit card syndication is another excellent direct mail opportunity.  This opportunity involves creating a product offer insert which becomes part of the package that is mailed to the consumer along with a credit card bill. This is BIG business for direct response marketers.  There are an estimated 230 million credit card statements mailed monthly.  Studies have shown that “stand-alone” insert sales average a profitable $125 per thousand inserts.  However, when an insert is supported by integrated marketing (Infomercial, short-form television spots, radio, internet, print media, mail order, catalogs, etc.) that number climbs to $500 per thousand inserts.

Finally, Direct (DVD) Videos could possibly represent the best overall marketing strategy for an advertiser that utilizes the powerful sales presentation created from an Infomercial.  Essentially, the Direct Video is a re-edited version of the Infomercial, which keeps production costs to a minimum.  Direct Videos also offer a prospective buyer a very non-threatening sales presentation.

All the advertiser needs to do is to make this compelling video presentation available on DVD for free to anyone who requests more information about a product or service.   Since more than 80% of the people who own a television set also have a DVD player, the potential for this type of marketing strategy is phenomenal.  Sometimes it may require additional follow-up marketing strategies, however, and even the Direct Video will have its own toll-free number so one can accurately monitor all results.  Some direct marketers believe the Direct Video represents the only “safety net” for a direct marketing campaign because they are inexpensive and produce results.

 “Segments from the direct video or infomercial can also be included on a company’s website, through flash or streaming video.  On-line video presentations have helped many companies grow exponentially  – both in new customers and overall revenues.”

Direct Marketing based on permission-based email marketing is also generating response rates that are shocking even the most optimistic direct marketers.  Up to 14% response rates have been tracked by some companies based on emails that were sent to consumers who “opted in” or gave “permission” to the marketer to send information and offers via email.  Certainly, response rates will vary depending upon the product and the offer, but just imagine achieving a response rate of close to 10% percent when a typical direct response benchmark for paid mail is closer to 1-2%!

The Electronic Direct Marketing strategies do not account for sales from Direct Mail or Catalogs.  According to the Electronic Retailing Association (ERA), ”Direct response, which includes long form infomercials, short form direct commercials, live shopping, radio marketing and online retailing, burgeoned into a $256 billion industry in 2003, a 10 percent increase over the previous year. In a study recently conducted by ERA, over 73 percent of respondents were satisfied with their direct response experience and approximately 70 percent of consumers will utilize direct response again to make a direct purchase. The sheer growth and confidence in this industry continues to increase as more and more companies, consumers and business professionals realize the power of direst response retailing.”

Direct Marketing, in all of its varied and valuable forms, can provide an integrated multi-channel marketing system that delivers measurable, accountable and immediate results.  A comprehensive Direct Marketing campaign, integrated with traditional advertising enables one to cross-promote and support all other forms of advertising and marketing, and provides the ultimate return on your advertising investment. Simply put, Direct Marketing is all about maximizing your return on investment through achieving immediate, measurable results – and sales!

“Call Now 1-800 -  How to Profit from Direct Response Television Advertising”  Copyright 2006  Rodney H. Buchser

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