Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter: Resources, ideas,
and tips for improving response to business-to-business,
high-tech, industrial, Internet, and direct marketing.
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its contents. They will thank you. So will I.
** Upcoming Speaking Engagements **
On Tuesday, January 11, 2005, I’ll be presenting:
“What’s Working in Direct Mail” and “What’s Working
in E-mail Marketing” for the Louisville Direct Marketing
Association. To register, click on
http://www.ldma.org/signup.php or call (502) 899-7100.
My 60-minute audioconference on “Marketing with
E-newsletters: Killer Tips and Tricks to Drive
More Revenues” will be hosted by Progressive Business
Conference on Wednesday, January 19. For more
information, go to
On January 21, I will be part of an AMA blogging
panel where I will prove to my arch nemesis,
Rick Bruner, that blogging is not the communications
revolution he thinks it is. Meanwhile, Rick Bruner,
Toby Bloomberg, and the real blogging experts will
give you practical guidelines on how to effectively
use this relatively new communications vehicle to
achieve your marketing goals. For more information,
And on Tuesday, January 25, I’ll be presenting
“What’s Working in E-mail Marketing Today” and
“A Formula for Creating Successful E-Zines”
for the local Newsletter & Electronic Publishers
Association (NEPA) in New York City. For more
information, e-mail Jim Bell at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
** Will That Be One Web Page or Two? **
If you are planning a long-copy microsite or landing
page to sell a single product, make it one long
continuous page that the reader can read by scrolling
Don’t break it into multiple pages, each ending with a
“cliff hanger” and a “next” button the reader can
click on to read the next page.
Reason: according to online marketing wizard Yanik
Silver, when he broke his long-copy Web page into
multiple linked pages, response rates declined by 40%.
Why this happens: whenever you give the reader a
choice between doing something (i.e., clicking “Next”)
and doing nothing (i.e., leaving), a percentage of
them will opt not to take the action you desire.
Therefore, the more steps in your online sales
process, the greater the “abandon rate” – the
percentage of people who leave without completing the
** Laughing Over the Death of Madison Avenue **
Madison Avenue’s unchecked waste of billions of
dollars on feel-good warm fuzzies like “getting out
the message” and “building up the brand” may soon come
crashing to the miserable end it deserves.
The reason, according to an article in BusinessWeek,
is that “marketers want to know the actual return on
investment (ROI) of each dollar [and] they want to
know it often.” And branding can’t give them that.
As a result, Fortune 500 corporations are funneling
advertising dollars away from TV commercials and
glossy ads, and toward the only type of marketing
proven to generate a positive ROI: online and direct
marketing, where “response rates are easily measured.”
Source: BusinessWeek, 12/13/04, p. 112.
** How to Make Money With a Subscription Web Site **
Whether you’re an author, consultant, subject matter
expert, entrepreneur, or simply someone with a passion
for a niche topic, you can learn to earn a sizable,
ever-growing income from easy-to-create products and
Join Fred Gleeck, Don Nicholas, Paul Hartunian, Kirt
Christensen, Rick Raddatz, Phil Huff, Alexandria Brown
and Paige Stover Hague at the Second Annual SWEPA
Membership Website and Information Products
Development Seminar, January 29-30, 2005 in Orlando,
Florida. Details at:
** Yes, It Sucks to be Me **
The other day a box of books arrived at my home. My
youngest son Stephen asked why we had gotten 10 copies
of the same book.
“These are the free author’s copies of my new book,” I
“How many books have you written, Dad?”
“This is my 60th book, son.”
“How did you have time to write so many books, Dad?”
“You know I love to write, so I do it 12 hours a day,”
“Wow,” said Steve in wide-eyed amazement. “It must
SUCK to be you!”
** The Secret to Writing Successful Fundraising
Letters ** …
.. is revealed in a new home-study course from the
folks at AWAI, “Secrets of Writing for the
The program includes:
* The first rule to producing great fundraising copy.
* The ABC’s of structuring letters that motivate
people to give.
* How to create a Donation Form that makes giving easy.
* Front and back-end premiums that work best
for raising money.
You get all this in a humongous three-ring binder …
more than half a dozen CDs … bonus reports. There’s
even a spec assignment for a real nonprofit!
This is one of the best fundraising copywriting
programs I’ve ever read! For more information,
click below now:
** E-zine of the Month **
Meryl Evans’ intelligently written “eNewsletter
Journal” shows you how to boost your business — and
build relationships with clients and prospects — by
publishing your own free online newsletter or
When you sign up for Meryl’s free e-zine, you also get
a free copy of A Marketer’s Guide to e-Newsletter
Publishing (list price: $24.95). For more information,
** Quotation of the Month **
“The degree of sympathy we feel regarding another’s
fiasco is directly proportional to how easy or
difficult it is for us to imagine ourselves, under
like circumstances, making a similar mistake.”
–Alain de Botton, “Status Anxiety”
(Pantheon Books, 2004)
** 60-Second Commercial from Fern Dickey,
Project Manager **
Bob is available on a limited basis for copywriting of
direct mail packages, sales letters, brochures, white
papers, ads, e-mail marketing campaigns, PR materials,
and Web pages. We recommend you call for a FREE copy
of our updated Copywriting Information Kit. Just let
us know your industry and the type of copy you’re
interested in seeing (ads, mailings, etc.), and if Bob
is available to take your assignment, we’ll tailor a
package of recent samples to fit your requirements.
Call Fern Dickey at 201-797-8105 or e-mail
22 E. Quackenbush Ave.
Dumont, NJ 07628