Newsletter Archives An archived collection of Bob Bly’s Direct Marketing Newsletter



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Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter:

Resources, ideas, and tips for improving response to

business-to-business, high-tech, industrial, Internet,

and direct marketing.

March 17, 2003


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A colleague recently said to me, “No one has found

the winning formula for successful online direct

marketing yet.”

I disagree. A number of companies know exactly what

works and are making small fortunes with it.

The primary concept is that online marketing works

best when you e-mail to people who already know you.

Therefore, successful online marketers build their

“house file” or “e-list” (lists of prospects and

their e-mail addresses) using the process

outlined below, and then sell to those people

via e-mail marketing:

1. Build a Web site that positions you or your

organization as an expert, guru, or leader in your

field or industry. This is the “base of operations”

for your online marketing campaign.

2. This Web site should include a home page, an

“About the Company” page, and a page with brief

descriptions of your products and services

(each product or service description can link

to a longer document on the individual item).

3. You should also have an “Articles Page”

where you post articles your company has published

on your industry or area of specialty, and where

visitors can read and download these articles for free

(e.g., a home improvement contractor would have tips

for small do-it-yourself home improvement projects).

4. Write a short special report or white paper

relating to the problem your product or service

addresses, and make this available to people who

visit your site. They can download it for free, but

in exchange, they have to register and give you

their e-mail address (and any other information you

want to capture).

5. Consider also offering a monthly online newsletter,

or “e-zine.” People who visit your site can subscribe

free if they register and give you their e-mail address.

You may want to give the visitor the option of checking

a box that reads: “I give you and other companies you

select permission to send me e-mail about products, services,

news, and offers that may be of interest to me.”

6. The more “content” (useful information) on your site,

the better. More people will be attracted to your site,

and they will spend more time on it. They will also tell

others about your site.

7. The model is to drive traffic to your site where you

get them to sign up for either your free report or

free e-zine. Once they register, you have their e-mail

address and can now market to them via e-mail as often

as you like at no extra cost.

8. The bulk of your online leads, sales, and profits will

come from repeat e-mail marketing to this “house”

e-list of prospects. Therefore your goal is to build a large

e-list of qualified prospects as quickly and inexpensively

as you can.

9. There are a number of online marketing options, which

can drive traffic to your site, that I can help you with —

or refer you to an expert I know and trust to help you with.

These include: free publicity; e-mail marketing; banner

advertising; co-registrations; affiliate marketing; search

engine optimization; direct mail; and e-zine advertising.

A good source of web marketing resources is:


10. The key to success is to try a lot of different tactics

in small and inexpensive tests, throw out the ones that

don’t work, and do more of the ones that are effective.



Online marketing guru Cory Rudl advises marketers to avoid

these common Web site mistakes that drive visitors away:

* Overwhelming graphics.

* Too many links going to too many different places.

* Flashy banners.

* Lengthy, pointless flash presentations.

* An entire home page devoted to your corporate mission

statement or something else without a reader benefit.

* Lack of relevant information.

Source: Opportunity World, April 2003, p. 67



I have seen enough tests to know that you can increase

click-through rates on e-mail marketing messages up to

50% and sometimes as much as 100% just by changing

the subject line. Now I am looking for 3 clients

to help me prove this.

If you are one of the first 3 people to respond to this

offer, I will write an e-mail marketing message for

you at 33% off my regular rate AND give you two subject

lines to split test. All I ask in return is that you share

the results with me.

To find out more about this offer, call Fern Dickey

at 201-797-8105 or e-mail her at



* Purchase the most effective domain name

(e.g., if you are

a divorce lawyer).

* If you select a new URL, make sure previous

users are linked to the new site from any other

sites your company has.

* Make sure your site uses tags for its title

and description. Search engines use these tags

to classify your site.

* Search engines cannot find flash or frame

pages. Use HTML.

Source:, 3/10/03, p. 19



If business is slow, and the weak economy has you worried,

sign up for my April 8 teleseminar, “Marketing Your Services.”

You’ll get practical, easy-to-implement strategies that can

help you generate more leads and close more sales, even in

today’s marketplace. To register for this live, hour-long

session, click on the link below:




Bob is available on a limited basis for copywriting

of direct mail packages, sales letters, brochures, white papers,

data sheets, 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


Bob Bly

Copywriter/ Consultant

22 E. Quackenbush Ave.

Dumont, NJ 07628

phone 201-385-1220

fax 201-385-1138

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