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


Can fruitcake reveal a marketing secret?

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Bob Bly’s Direct Response Letter:
Resources, ideas, and tips for improving response
to business-to-business, high-tech, and direct

November, 2005


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And feel free to forward this issue to any peers,
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from its contents. They will thank you. So will I.


***Can a fruitcake boost your response rates?***

Semantics ? the language you use to describe your
product and offer ? can make a huge difference in
bottom-line results.

If that were not true, no car dealer would
advertise “pre-owned automobiles.” They would just
sell used cars.

Another example: Collin Street Bakery,
headquartered in Texas, was struggling to generate
sales for its fruitcake.

The cakes are delicious. But “fruitcake” has a
negative image.

One of the reasons Collin Street fruitcakes taste
so good is they are made with pecans grown on the
Texas river banks.

So Collin Street Bakery repositioned their
fruitcake, calling it a “Native Texas Pecan Cake.”

The results: response rates to direct mail selling
the cakes increased 60% … and the promotion was so
successful, the bakery sent 12 million pieces of

Source: Sandy Franks, Agora Publishing


***Attend the first Bob Bly Copywriting Boot Camp
— and save $500***

Fred Gleeck Productions is sponsoring a 3-day
event, “The World?s Best-Kept Copywriting Secrets
Boot Camp,” featuring Bob Bly, to be held February
24-26 in Las Vegas.

By enrolling online now, you save $500. For more
information and to register, click below now:


***Describe your product?s benefits at 3 levels***

In a presentation at the American Writers and
Artists Institute October Boot Camp, copywriting
legend Herschell Gordon Lewis showed how to write
more powerful copy by using first, second, and
third-level benefits:

* First-level benefit: Make a statement of
superiority to others.

Example: “Here at last is a silent dishwasher.”

* Second-level benefit: Relate that statement of
superiority to the reader.

Example: “Kitchen noise and clatter are gone

* Third-level benefit: Tell the reader how this
superiority brings an improvement to her life.

Example: “For the first time, you can have a
civilized kitchen conversation, or play quiet
music … and actually hear it.”


***Direct mail isn?t dead yet!***

* According to a study by comScore Networks, 65%
of consumers read more of the credit card offers
they get in their mail box instead of online, and
61% respond more to credit card offers they get in
the mail than online.

The study concluded that most consumers still
prefer and respond more strongly to direct mail.

* A different study, from the U.S. Postal Service,
found that 95% of all American households search
through their postal mail daily and 63% said they
enjoy getting catalogs.

* Another study found that people remember what
they read in print better than what they read on
the Web.

“Print is consistently better for recall than
screen,” concludes the study. “Individuals have a
better ability to recall after viewing materials
in print rather than on screen.”

* According to research from Vertis, direct mail
readership is on the rise: 76% of adults surveyed
read direct mail, up from 72% in 2002.

* Finally, a Direct Marketing Association study
found that sales driven by direct marketing are
projected to grow by 6.4% compounded annually
through 2009 while overall U.S. sales are
projected to grow 4.8% in the same period.

The Direct Marketing Association also reports that
direct mail expenditures have increased
approximately 76% since 1992.

In 2005, $36 billion was spent on direct mail ?
more than either print or broadcast.

Sources: DM News, 9/26/05, p. 14; Direct, 10/1/05,
p. 12; Metalworking Marketer, 10/05, p. 6; Sandy
Franks presentation, AWAI; BtoB, 10/10/05, p. 29;
Deliver, 11/05.


***Upcoming speaking engagements***

On November 9, I will be giving a talk titled ?10
Ways to Double Your Freelance Writing Income and
Earn $100,000 a Year Or Much, Much More in 2006?
to NJCreatives, a group of northern New Jersey
freelance writers, graphic artists, illustrators,
and photographers.

For more information including time and location,
click here:

On December 8, I?ll be giving my workshop “What?s
Working in E-Mail Marketing Today” at the
Newsletter and Electronic Publisher Association?s
(NEPA) Marketing Conference in Orlando, Florida.
For more information or to register, click below:


***Meet direct marketing legend Tom Collins in New

The New Jersey chapter of the Business Marketing
Association is hosting Tom Collins, the “Makeover
Maven” from Direct magazine, as he presents his
views ? sometimes controversial, but always
thought-provoking ? on what makes an effective
print ad. To register, go to:


***Recent projects (just a sampling)…***

Direct mail package for Dow Theory Forecasts ?
promotion for KCI … brochure, PR, and Web copy for
Manhole Barrier Security Systems … brochures and
Web copy for Intech … sales letter for Enterprise
Technology Solutions … white papers and Web copy
for Passlogix … promotions for AWAI and ETR …
landing page for Referrals on Demand … e-mail for
Execunet … brochure and sales letters for VNUS …
ad and insert for Agora Health Books … and more.


***60-second commercial from Fern Dickey, Project

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


Bob Bly
22 E. Quackenbush Ave.
Dumont, NJ 07628
phone 201-385-1220
fax 201-385-1138


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