The Next Big Thing

I just spent two days with fifteen of the most successful entrepreneurial marketers in the country. By that description, I mean that they each have their own business as opposed to working for a big company with an unlimited marketing budget. They are successful marketers, several of them wildly successful, because they have to be. Every day, customers vote on their marketing with real dollars to attest to how good these marketing campaigns are. When they say something, I listen.

They said a lot during two full days, and I will explore further ideas and thoughts in coming issues of this report. Now, I want to let you in on what I considered one of their biggest ideas. Old is new again. Here’s the scoop.

All of these guys are big on the internet, and they are all direct response marketers. If they can’t track the ROI (return on investment) for a marketing campaign, they won’t even start the campaign, because the money is wasted if they can’t get accurate data that can be used to improve, correct, and redeliver it. Naturally, that is a lesson in and of itself.

The big lesson from these tech-savvy marketers is that there is one step that has to be added to almost every campaign to make the numbers really sing. Want to know what it was? Use the telephone.

That’s right; nearly every person in the room was adding telemarketing to follow up their direct mail and e-mail campaigns to help them close a higher percentage of leads. E-mail and direct mail alone were not enough to get the returns that they wanted despite the current economic slowdown. However, by following up by phone, they were converting the many people who were sitting on the fence – not necessarily because the offer wasn’t good, but because many people are more cautious today about their economic situation and think longer about purchases.

Ok, so maybe this wasn’t a revolutionary idea, but it is a powerful one. The phone is working again today, because many marketers have moved away from it. It has become a scarce tactic. Why? Here are a couple reasons: the so-called “low cost” of email and because picking up the phone and using it is more work than sending out an email blast. But, whatever the reason, the phone makes the difference on bottom-line profits. What I encourage you to do, no matter what your product, is to add this communication method to all of your offers. You will be glad you did.