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


Increase email open rates; help from Yelp; write killer headlines

Filed under: Newsletter Archive — site admin @ 3:43 pm


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

August 3, 2017


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***Words to use and avoid in subject lines***

A recent British research report tells copywriters which words in
subject lines increase or reduce open rates compared with email

–Emails with the word “alert” in their subject lines have 38%
higher open rates.
–The keywords “free delivery” have a 50% higher open rate.
–The keyword “bulletin” has a 16% higher open rate.
–On the other hand “report” has a 24% lower open rate.
–And the keyword “learn” has a 35% lower open rate

Source: The Levison Letter
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***Don’t put off your ambitions and dreams***

Let nothing, absolutely nothing, interfere with immediate action.
A change for the better justifies no delay. Don’t watch others
make money which you can make. Be up and doing now. Some other
time may be too late. Take the action now. That means more money
next week, independence next year.

Source: Drayton Bird e-newsletter, 6/20/17.


***To write a great headline, write LOTS of headlines***

Always have more than one headline ready. Even if the client says
he’s only giving you one test panel — make sure to have several
alternative headlines.

Says superstar copywriter Carline Anglade-Cole, “It never fails
that the ONE headline I LOVE the most — is the one that performs
the worst! And the headline I’m not thrilled about — becomes the
kick-butt winner!”

According to Carline, your job is not to come up with the winning
headline. It’s to give your clients options — so they choose
which one to buy. She adds, “It doesn’t matter which headline
works best — you’re still the winner, because the royalty checks
come to YOU.”

Action step: Make it a habit to provide 2… 3… 5… or more headlines
for every project. It’s what Carline does. Me too.

Source: Copy Star, 6/16/17.


***Marketing help from Yelp***

A new Nielsen study released on 5/17 says Yelp does a better job
than Google or Facebook in driving conversion: 92% of people who
use online review sites say they made a purchase after visiting
Yelp. Action step: register your business on Yelp now.

Source: Today@TargetMarketing, 6/14/17.


***Selling to farmers: ’tis the season***

Direct mail guru Craig Simpson shares this useful guide:
Based on his extensive direct mail testing, the worst time to
send direct mail to farmers is during harvest season, because
they have no time to read it.

Conversely, Craig gets his best results mailing aggressively to
farmers in the off-season, when they are highly responsive.
Lesson: timing is everything. So is there logic that dictates
timing for your market — for instance, tax season for accountants,
holiday season for gift catalogs, or offers affected by students
going back to school?

Source: Talon Newsletter, June 2017, p. 1.


**Strategic timing for email distribution***

As with direct mail (see above section), consider the
intersection of timing and subject matter when scheduling email
distributions. For instance, say you’re sending an email about
coffee consumption. Might it resonate best if sent in the
morning, when someone is more likely to be drinking coffee?

Action step: Your email service provider (ESP) may be able to
provide details about the best time to send emails based on your
industry and unique company data. Ask them!

Source: PR Daily News Feed, 6/14/17.


***Boost direct mail response rates with quizzes***

A time-tested but now under-used tactic for boosting direct mail
engagement, readership, and response is to use a quiz at the top
of page one of the sales letter above the salutation, on the
outer envelope, or both.

It works on two levels. First, people like taking quizzes. So
it’s an involvement device.

Second, the quiz asks qualifying questions that help the prospect
self-identify as someone in need of what you are offering.

Source: Today@TargetMarketing, 6/9/17.


***3 tips for getting new clients through networking***

#1: Start conversations — Go out of your way to get into
conversations with anyone and everyone you can, in person, on the
phone, or via email.

#2: Ask questions — Find out what they’re working on. Also, tell
them what you’re working on. Anything can come out of a simple
conversation: ideas, alliances, connections, referrals, new
business, and new opportunities.

#3: Arrive early — If you wait until most of the attendees have
arrived at the meeting or event, many of them will already be in
conversations and it won’t be as easy to break in.

Source: AWAI Golden Thread, 6/12/17.


***Which has better ROI: email marketing or social media?***

According to a ClickZ article (6/14/17), email continues to have
the highest ROI of any marketing channel. So when some smartass
tells you email marketing is on its way out, and that you should
be doing SnapChat, don’t you believe them: Email — not social or
SEO — is still the “killer marketing app” on the internet.


***Investing tip for 6-figure marketers***

The ability to have funds to buy a property on the front end is
critical, but money can also many times be the exit strategy on
the back end.

For instance if you are doing a rental property that may need to
be renovated and then have a tenant to put inside is a perfect example
of needing money on the front end and a long term mortgage on the
back end.

Make sure you get qualified for these two loans ahead of time.
They are two different loans and must be qualified for

Source: Peter Vekselman,, 404-915-9685


***Quotation of the month***

“It is better to be a young June-bug than an old bird of
–Mark Twain


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