Episode #75

The one about postcards, from the car. – #75


Dean: I’m Dean Jackson, he’s Joe Polish, and this is the I Love Marketing podcast. Hi everyone, it’s Dean Jackson. Joe: And Joe Polish.

Dean: And look at us. We’re back in the car.

Joe: This is a second car episode we’ve done.

Dean: This is the second carcast. That was one of the favorite episodes. We did the carcast on naming things.

Joe: Yes. So what are we going to do today? Postcards.

Dean: Yeah, let’s talk about postcards, because that’s been coming up a lot lately, and I don’t think we’ve ever really talked about it.

Joe: You know, the beauty of direct mail and the beauty of offline advertising… You need to quit coughing while we’re doing this carcast. Okay?

Dean: I’m sorry.

Joe: I told you not to smoke cigars while we do this, Dean. Anyway, he’s not smoking cigars, just in case, anyone would possibly think that. Well, here’s the thing. I was talking to Brendon Burchard the other day, and I’ve been running some offline advertising, and the July issue of Success magazine has 3 different ads for me.

Dean: Right. That’s essentially a giant postcard that you’ve got inside the insert. It’s essentially a jumbo postcard.

Joe: Right, right. Anyway, the reason I bring that up, is that I’ve been talking to a lot of my very smart marketing colleagues, that many are just brilliant online advertisers, and know stuff that I don’t even know.

Dean: Yeah, but they don’t do a thing offline.

Joe: They know nothing about postcards or sales letters, or even like advertising.

Dean: Right.

Joe: And it’s amazing to me how much people don’t look at this gigantic opportunity that is available to everyone, and they don’t add it to their mix of sequencing and other methods. So, do you want to start? Where’s the jumping off point here?

Dean: Well, you know, I think that there are so many different ways to use postcards, but let’s talk about the before unit, because there are a lot of great things we can do in the after unit with postcards, too. But let’s talk about the before unit. I really look at it as one of the lowest-cost, highest-yield lead generating things that you can do. For years, in real estate especially, we’ve used postcards to get people to raise their hands, and then take them online and do the rest of the follow-up sequence online.

Joe: Well, we’re going to pause that for a moment, because there’s a call coming in from, oh, my god, the President.

Dean: Okay, we’ll be right back.

Joe: Alright, we are back, and that was actually Dean’s wife. It wasn’t really the President.

Dean: It was the President.

Joe: But it’s sort of the President.

Dean: The President of the company.

Joe: Alright, so there we go.

Dean: From a lead generation standpoint, doing things that get people to identify themselves is really the most powerful thing you can do on a postcard. And one of the mistakes that I see people make with postcards is trying to do too much on the postcard. They try and make the sale on the postcard. I think that there’s something really powerful when you can just use the postcard to compel people to identify themselves, and then use the next profit activator to educate and motivate them to want to meet you. So, it really lends itself to making all-cheese offers. You know how we talk about more cheese, less whiskers. A lot of times, people want to kind of use the postcard to set people up for the sale, like it feels like they want to get people primed that they’re going to the site to buy something, rather than just focus 100% on their selfish desire, on the cheese for them, offering them something in exchange for them going to identify themselves, to raise their hands.

Joe: Yep.

Dean: The best example, the one we use most frequently, there are probably 100,000 or more of these postcards going out every single month, from people all over the country, offering homeowners the current month report on Winter Haven house prices. We go narrow, even, into lakefront house prices. So, we send a postcard every month, offering people the free June 2012 report on Winter Haven lakefront house prices. And that doesn’t say anything about “list your house with Julie Matthews,” or “call Julie Matthews and start packing,” it’s all about getting into the conversation that already going on in their mind, about, “How much is my house worth?” because that’s the thing that people really want to know when they start the process of selling their house. And for every single business, for every single category, there’s some trigger thought that is prominent in the mind of your prospect, that if you can tap into that or make an offer to them that’s going to make it easy for them to get that information, while at the same time identifying themselves to you, so that now you can educate them, give them all the information that they need, and motivate them to take the next step by offering them the cookies that we talk about, the next step offers. You know?

Joe: Have you ever tried just sending out a postcard that says, “It’s Julie Matthews, start packing”?

Dean: You see these all the time. It’s like they say, “Thinking of selling? Call Julie Matthews and start packing.” Or there’s other ones I’ve seen, with a picture of the Realtor up on top of the roof of the house, or it’s got a picture and, “Thinking of selling your house? Call Julie Matthews and she’ll get right on it.” The play on words, “she’ll get right on it,” and she’s up on top of the roof of the house, the focus that these people have it to try and make themselves famous, instead of making themselves rich. And making yourself rich is putting your own selfish desires aside and focusing only on the desires of the people that you want to reach.

Joe: Now, you know what I’m half-tempted to do here, Dean? What are we driving through right now, this area in Toronto? Where are we?

Dean: So we are in Halton Hills, and it is beautiful and green, and rolling hills.

Joe: I almost want to videotape this while I’m holding the recorder, while you drive. This is like crazy. Let me see if I can do this for everybody.

Dean: Okay.

Joe: Let’s see, I’ll put me in here. I’m going to reverse this. Now I look super-white because of the sun, so the lighting is really weird here.

Dean: You really do look white. You look like a vampire.

Joe: Well, I mean, it’s like a bright, shining sunlight on me. Okay, here we go. Alright, we’re going to include this video during the I Love Marketing episode. Here’s Dean, over here.

Dean: Here we go.

Joe: There’s me. Here’s a little mini recorder that I’m holding in my hand, and we have a guest in the backseat, but we’ll keep her hidden for now.

Dean: Okay.

Joe: She’s famous. Now, we’ve passed like what I thought were the beautiful areas, this is still cool and everything but we had like a stretch that was pretty awesome. But we’re doing the ILoveMarketing.com podcast, carcast, actually, and that’s it. I just wanted to capture this beautiful moment, right here.

Dean: That’s called the multitasking, right there. Now, we’ve got 2 pieces of content from one thing.

Joe: Yeah, I think it’s kind of useful to let people peek into how we do these things and what’s going on. Alright, and we’re driving in this little BMW MX5, or whatever.

Dean: Yeah, this is a fancy, 5 liter, X5. It’s cool.

Joe: I don’t know. I’m not that impressed with it.

Dean: Yeah, there you go.

Joe: I like my Land Rover better.

Dean: I know you do.

Joe: Alright, so anyway, back to the postcards.

Dean: Yes.

Joe: Here’s one thing I want to…

Dean: You’ve been writing notes, as I’ve been taking.

Joe: Yeah, I’ve actually been reminded of things. I remember the very first full day consultation I ever did with one of my carpet-cleaning clients. This must have been within the first year of me selling marketing information. And right out of the gate, I did really well. And back then, there was no Internet. I was running space ads that would drive people to 24-hour, free, recorded message. But, then I would get lists of carpet cleaners, and I would send postcards and sales letters to them, driving them to the 24-hour, free recorded message to request a free report, not trying to sell them my program, not even mentioning my program. Just like you went through the whole example of getting people to identify themselves, entering a conversation that’s in their mind, what is prominent in their mind.

Dean: You were offering them something of value.

Joe: Yeah, totally. A free report of how to double their business in 6 months or less. Let’s what I was offering. Basically, one of my clients who really immediately, as soon as she had bought my kit, her and her husband started implementing stuff, they had like immediately run a phone book ad, and it was driving people to a free, recorded message. This must have been 1995, 1996. I mean I really can’t remember. It was very early on, though, probably within a year, maybe 18 months of me having first started offering my marketing packages. Basically, they had a successful ad that was literally bringing in 5:1. It was time to do another ad in another Yellow Pages, and they were already killing it with this one phone book ad, and they thought they could improve it even more. And one of the things that we had been testing was if you’re ever going to run a space ad in the newspaper or Yellow Pages, or…

Dean: Test it as a postcard.

Joe: Test it as a postcard, because you can cross-test. Try this ad as a postcard. Try this ad as a postcard. If you’re going to go to a list of 1,000 people, 500 get this one, 500 get that one. Whatever gets you the most response, that’s obviously the best one, assuming you’re going to a very similar, same type of list sort of thing. So, they had tested their new version of the ad they wanted to run in the Yellow Pages, compared against the ad they were currently running as a postcard. They never thought of this before. And what they found was that the one they were currently running…

Dean: Was better.

Joe: Was twice as good…

Dean: Yeah, there you go.

Joe: As the one they took. But they were able to figure that out with a postcard, instead of obligating themselves to a year’s worth of advertising that you can’t change after you place a phone book ad, until that phone book comes out a year later. You know what’s funny, too? I remember $1,500 is what I charged them for the day of consulting. Now, obviously, that’s a third of my hourly rate.

Dean: Half an hour.

Joe: But basically, that was really freaking cool to see them do that. And then, I started teaching that to all of the different cleaning clients that I had, and showing them, “Here’s how you can actually test it.” But it’s weird. You go to today, 2012, and how many people not only wouldn’t even think to do stuff like that, they don’t even think to use postcards.

Dean: Right.

Joe: We’ve said this on many episodes in the past. There’s less noise in people’s mailboxes today, than there obviously was 5 years ago, 10 years ago, 15 years ago. There’s a huge advantage. And the question is, “What are you going to do about it, after you hear us talking about it?” So, our goal here is to kind of clarify some of the how-tos and the reasons and the psychology behind it. But, my hope is that, this week, you’ll put together a postcard, you’ll figure out, like what you said, Dean, the prominent thought and concern in your prospect’s mind, and you will send something out to get them to self-identify themselves and raise their hand and say, “I’m interested.”

Dean: Yes.

Joe: You know, that’s the whole thing, too. People really focus on prospects, and I’m sorry, they focus on – I shouldn’t say prospects – buyers and non-buyers, and they’ll try to sell something just to get someone to immediately be a buyer, versus there are people that will raise their hand halfway. They’ll say like, “I’m sort of interested, but I’m not fully interested enough to make a buying decision. But, if you can get me a free report, if you can get me information about home listings…”

Dean: Yeah, that’s the thing. That was a big distinction that I had, was really understanding that it’s going to be okay if you don’t try to sell them on the postcard, that it’s going to be okay. You have to think like a chess master. You have to think 3 or 4 moves ahead, and know what’s actually going to happen, and know that you can let go of your selfish desire first, just to get somebody to raise their hand. And then, you know that you’re going to have subsequent communications that are going to lead them to the next step and the next step, and ultimately lead them into a relationship with you.

Joe: Yeah. And can I say something like that, too? For one, you’re absolutely right. And secondly, what people need to really be aware of is that – how do I best say this – you will lose if you just try to go straight to the sale, in most cases. So, it’s not even just being patient and thinking like a chess master, that’s the only way that you can make this stuff work, most of the time, is you have to do this. The reason many people don’t do advertising or don’t do postcards, or don’t do marketing campaigns, or I would always hear, “Yellow Pages doesn’t work,” even to this day.

Dean: Right.

Joe: I’ll hear people say, “They’re obsolete.” We have people running Yellow Pages, in 2012, kicking ass and taking names. And we have people doing direct mail, and all these methodologies, online and offline, that people will swear don’t work. And it’s not that they don’t work, it’s the approach they’re using that doesn’t work.

Dean: That’s exactly right.

Joe: It’s like kind of saying, “Getting a date doesn’t work.”

Dean: Dating doesn’t work.

Joe: Yeah, dating doesn’t work. It’s like, well, it depends, are you asking the right person? Are you a message-to-market match? Think of it this way. I’m a member of a gym called Lifetime Fitness, and they’ve got a giant pool, indoors and outdoors, in this gym. And on weekends, families are there with all their kids. They show up, but there will be like a little kid sort of event that will take place at a certain time, and a bunch of kids will get in, and then they’ll take them through a swimming class, and playing around in the pool. And I’ve never watched, like when it’s time from them to say, “Okay, kids, come in the pool,” all the kids, like all of them, all at once, just immediately jump in the pool, and so do the adults. Even though it’s probably the fastest way to deal with, “Oh, it’s going to be cold for a few seconds,” most people still step in.

Dean: Oh, yeah.

Joe: They walk in slowly, and they deal with, “Oh!” They don’t just say, “Oh, time to get in the pool. Let’s all jump in.” I’ve never witnessed that all at once, except those guys and gals that jump in the freezing water. What do they call them?

Dean: Yeah. The polar bear club.

Joe: Exactly. People don’t operate that way in swimming pools, and they don’t operate that way in responding to marketing campaigns. A lot of times, you have to multi-step it. You have to get their toe in the water, and then you put their foot in the water. It’s just a process. Selling is not an event; it is a process, if you do it with postcards, if you do it with anything. So, the best usage of maximum response, with postcards and everything else, is certainly not even trying to sell them.

Dean: Really, to make the difference, the easiest way to describe it, is to make sure that the postcard is giving and not taking. There’s a difference, and people can tell the difference. Our minds are conditioned to avoid and ignore advertising. Clearly, we try and avoid advertising messages. There’s actually a part of your brain, called Broca’s area, which is this little part of your brain that’s whole job is to filter out the unimportant things, and to bring to your attention the things that are important. We’re driving right now. And if we had to give every single thing in our sight 100% attention, if we had to give it all equal weight, we wouldn’t be able to function because you’re so overwhelmed with all of the input that you have. But your mind develops…

Joe: Look a squirrel! A squirrel! I’m kidding.

Dean: Yeah, exactly. But your mind develops shortcuts to know which things are valuable; that’s why you can drive up and down this street, and you can see all of these advertising messages, and not pay any attention to them. But when you see a Stop sign, Broca knows that that’s important, and it’s going to bring it to your attention. So, when you look at the way that works, you have to imagine Broca as like the guardian, the doorman into the actual part of your brain that processes information.

Joe: Right.

Dean: And when you send out an ad, a postcard, that looks like an ad that’s got your logo and your name, and you’re the star of the postcard, then it’s really indicating to Broca, “Hey, this is an advertisement. You don’t need to pay attention to this.”

Joe: Right. Right.

Dean: But when you send out something that looks like a newspaper article, looks like valuable information, and it’s starting off with the words “Free,” and it’s offering you something, Broca’s like, “Oh, this must be something good. Let’s let that in,” and you can make that decision based on that.

Joe: What you just said, we’ve talked about this before and everything, what you just said just made me realize the value of guys like me and you, because our Broca is like all screwed up. I notice advertisements and promotions, and I numb out on things that are probably really important in my life.

Dean: Yeah, it’s funny.

Joe: I’m sort of curt, I’m opinionated, that sort of thing. I’m more pleasant than you, although I’m a little more sarcastic and stuff. I mean I think you were to add it all up…

Dean: If you had a poll?

Joe: Yeah.

Dean: That people would say you’re more pleasant than me?

Joe: No, but in all seriousness, think about that. Me and you are constantly noticing advertising promotions. When we’re not recording here and stuff, and we’re driving along, how many times have I said, “Look at that billboard”?

Dean: I know. We talk about this all the time. That’s why it doesn’t make sense to not record the conversations that we have when we’re driving for an hour.

Joe: We’re going to have to do a videocast, at one point in time, so people can actually see like the mail truck in front of us.

Dean: We’ll wear like helmet cams and go through the day, so people can see what we’re seeing.

Joe: We could go through the shopping mall, and we could have something rigged up. Eventually, the technology’s going to allow us to just literally, live, we’ll stream it. I can see I Love Marketing, several years from now, it will be streaming.

Dean: Holograms. We’ll be streaming holograms.

Joe: It’ll be ridiculous. Okay.

Dean: Me and you and Tupac.

Joe: Yeah. And if people don’t know what he’s talking about, you’ll have to just do a YouTube search for when they…

Dean: Tupac hologram. Yeah.

Joe: Yeah. They brought him back for a live concert, which was…

Dean: Brilliant.

Joe: Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely. Okay. So, you’ve talked about, a little, of the psychology of getting it, delivering the message in a way that gets people to raise their hand and self-identity themselves. What about selection of the list?

Dean: That’s perfect. There are so many different ways. And you know, people say, “Well, nobody reads their mail.” “Nobody gets their mail.” And I think that’s absolute rubbish.

Joe: Is that an English term or a Canadian term, or what is it?

Dean: It’s a nice way of saying bullshit, yeah.

Joe: Well, let’s tell them the Gary Halbert famous A pile, versus B pile. We’ve discussed it.

Dean: Perfect. See that’s a great example. And I’ll give you an example of the birthday card, as an example.

Joe: Well, explain the A pile/B pile, so people know what it is.

Dean: So our friend, Gary Halbert, he would say, and this is really kind of profound when you really get it, because it’s absolutely true, that people sort their mail over the garbage can. They get the mail, they got the garbage can, and they’re sorting their mail into the A pile and the B pile. And the A pile are all the things that are important or personal, the things that they’re going to open first.

Joe: Or appear personal.

Dean: Appear personal. And the B pile are things that are clearly junk mail that can be thrown away.

Joe: And even if it’s not junk mail, if it looks like junk mail, they’re going to throw it away.

Dean: Right. Exactly.

Joe: Or it’s not going to get the attention that the other stuff’s going to get.

Dean: Yes. Exactly right. So whenever I talk about postcards, I always think about the birthday postcard that we did in Florida. The guys who do all the postcard printing for me, and I do a ton of postcard stuff, they have a division of their company that does birthday prospecting. And they would go to restaurants and spas, and local businesses, and they have the direct feed of all the Experian and Axiom databases, so they know everything about everybody by geography. You can make a list of people who are a certain age, with a certain income, that own homes, that own pets, that live within a certain zip code, and you can tell when their birthdays are. So, they would put together these lists, and send birthday cards, birthday postcards to people who are celebrating a birthday that month. And it’s a very good strategy for local businesses, to get people within a radius of their business. And most of the time, those cards would get a 5%, or 6%, or 7 % response rate, which is really good for direct mail. But we did a card that got over 30% response rate; 32% of the people that got this card went to a personalized URL to find out what it was all about. The difference that we did was focusing it 100% on cheese, on looking like a personal thing that was celebrating their birthday. So, rather than sending them a postcard, the most successful card they had was the Hooter’s card. It had some Hooter’s girls on it, and it would say, “Joe, come party with us on your birthday,” and you could go to BirthdayatHooters.com/Joe Polish, and download a gift card.” And that card would get 7% to 8% response every time they’d mail it. So, we did a card that didn’t have any kind of commercial intention on the front of the card, but it looked like a birthday card. I had their designer draw a picture, an illustration of what looked like an office party. A bunch of people standing around a table with a birthday cake, with a banner that said, “Happy birthday, Joe.” Because with all the new advances now, in digital printing, you can use digital variable printing and you can make it look like a completely customized card. So, it would say, “Happy birthday, Joe” on a big banner, on the front of the card.

Joe: And that’s the key. And you said personalized URL. Explain what that means.

Dean: A personalized URL is that when you use a URL, and add an extension, you know, Joe.Polish, where know you can go and that’s carried on. So that website is only for you.

Joe: Yeah, meaning…

Dean: It’s a personalized URL. Is what PURL stands for.

Joe: And people could actually do that with their website, if they set if up, obviously, with a database, like ILoveMarketing.com/John Smith.

Dean: Exactly. And there are different people who do all that. It’s pretty easy to set up. There are people who do that whole turnkey for you, postcard printers that can do that same thing, like the guys that I work with in Sarasota.

Joe: Well, let me mention something, too. I want to point this out, as you’re still going through this, because this is great. See, the reason you get a 32% response when you first did that mailing, was because of the multi-steps here.

Dean: Yes.

Joe: That’s what I want people to understand. Is that if you get that marketing is a multistep process in many cases, not that you want to just add steps just to add steps. Frankly, all of us, you know, me and Dean included, would love to have the least amount of steps to get to where we want. The least amount of steps. Marketing is the quickest path to the sale. However, sometimes, if you don’t have multiple steps, you’re never going to make a sale.

Dean: Right.

Joe: So, what I want people to understand is that if you’re willing to learn and understand, and do these things, this gives you such a huge advantage, not only to have your marketing and your advertising be successful, but your competitors never figure this stuff out.

Dean: Right.

Joe: They don’t know that, “Oh, you should get people to raise their hand and self-identify, not just try to sell something direct.” That was the big shift of how I transformed the cleaning industry. And we’re talking a small percentage, because even to this day, with the most successful campaigns in the world for selling carpet and upholstery cleaning services that I pretty much invented most of them, 20 years ago.

Dean: Right.

Joe: The vast majority of the carpet industry…

Dean: They still don’t use them.

Joe: …still don’t use them, because they’re unwilling to actually learn. They may hear about it, but they don’t test it. They’re like, “Oh, let’s really see if sending out a request for a consumer awareness guide, or driving someone to a free recorded message, or go watch a consumer awareness video on YouTube that’s linked to this website.” I mean, they don’t do stuff like that. So, the point is everything here is not just write a postcard and pick a good list. That’s part of it.

Dean: But then, think through what’s going on in their minds. And I think that the reason that that postcard worked so well is because it is around somebody’s birthday. People start to get more sort of hyper-vigilant about what’s happening in the mail, that they’re expecting that birthday card from Aunt Doris with the $10 in it, or they’re expecting to see who’s going to remember their birthday. And even if they’re not ultimately the person that gets the mail, because only one person in a household usually goes and gets the mail, but when they come home, the mail is laid out. Right?

Joe: Right.

Dean: In our house, Courtney gets the mail, but she lays it out. It’s got my pile, and Sony’s pile, and then the catalogs. She does the sorting into the A pile and the B pile kind of thing.

Joe: Right.

Dean: So, if I came home and it was my birthday, on the top of my A pile would be this postcard, “Happy Birthday, Dean.” Right? So now, there’s no indication that this is any kind of commercial message. It’s just “Happy Birthday Dean,” then you turn the card over, and there’s one of the guys, their face there with a dialogue box. I’ll put this up on I Love Marketing. But there’s a little dialogue box in Courier font. I wanted this to look like something that the office would have gotten together and done for you, on your birthday. So, the little message says, “Happy Birthday, Dean. We all got together and got you something super-terrific. J.” That’s all it said. And then the PURL, you’d go to BigBirthdaySurprise.com/Dean.Jackson, and it would be a personalized website. Now, the only thing on that card, our only intention, and the question that they asked me was, “How can we get more people to go to that PURL? How can we get more people to go there?” So, the only thing that we focused on was getting them to go to that website. And I’m honestly shocked that they are 68% of the people who got that postcard who did not go to that PURL. It’s kind of like they had a little pool at the postcard place. They had a little pool on what kind of response it would get, and the highest on the thing was like 12%. But, I had bet 25%, what I had on the pool.

Joe: Was there money exchanged?

Dean: Yeah. Oh, yeah.

Joe: Illegal gambling?

Dean: Yeah. No, no there was no illegal gambling. It was just for pride. Bragging rights.

Joe: Oh, I see. Are you saying that because this is being recorded?

Dean: Just in case this is being recorded. Yeah.

Joe: Really, I don’t want to be doing a free podcast with a criminal.

Dean: I gotcha. So, anyway, when it got to over 30%, and it did it consistently over 30%, the only purpose of it was to get people to go to the PURL. Now, when they got there, one of the ones that we did was for Cafe Latte.

Joe: You just hit the recorder…

Dean: Sorry.

Joe: So if you actually hear a big boom, that was Dean getting so excited.

Dean: I do get excited.

Joe: He smashed his fist into my mini recorder.

Dean: I do get excited about it.

Joe: You need to kind of calm down here a little. We’re just talk about postcards.

Dean: So, when they went there, we had that image, the graphics and stuff that looked just like the other, just like the postcard, but it was a Happy Birthday message from Cafe Latte, telling them how, “We’re celebrating your birthday all month at Cafe Latte, and you can get free coffee everyday for your birthday month. Just bring in this best birthday ever free coffee card for Cafe Latte.” And that was like a really easy next step. Because you’ve got to remember, all you’re doing is engineering the sequence. You’ve got to think about it like a 3-act play, almost. You’re not going to reveal, in act one, what the big finale is in act 3. But you just talk about all they need to know to get to the next level. When you’re sending a postcard, the only objective you have is to get somebody to go to the website. And when they get to the website, the only objective is to get them to leave their contact information or to download the gift card, or to do whatever the next logical step is.

Joe: Yes. I totally hear you.

Dean: So, it’s kind of an exciting thing to see, even when people say, “Well, nobody pays attention to mail anymore.” Yet, we got 32% of everybody that we sent that card to, to actually log on and go to a website. And that’s pretty spectacular, when you think these are people you have no idea who they are, randomly. Just because they had a birthday that month, you got them to take some action.

Joe: You know what’s funny, though, about this, when people say, “This won’t work,” or “my business is different,” or “my clients are different,” “no one pays attention to this,” or “long copy doesn’t work”? We’ve heard that a million times. Most marketers are always having to address that sort of stuff. And I’m just thinking out loud here to myself, that when someone says something so idiotic, I often wonder if they could ever be turned around, because you know you do hear that a lot. We do address it.

Dean: “I tried direct mail; that doesn’t work.”

Joe: Yeah, yeah. When someone really says that, it’s almost like if you’re listening to this podcast, which if you weren’t you wouldn’t hear what I just said, would they? That wouldn’t make any sense, right?

Dean: So, ignore that.

Joe: If you’re listening to this and if you have people that have maybe suggested you listen to this, and you happen to have the mindset that this doesn’t work or direct mail doesn’t work, I would really encourage you to not only eradicate that nonsense from your head, but really go overboard in trying to remove that delusional sort of belief system from your mind, because it is one of the biggest inhibitors for success with marketing. It because a self-fulfilling prophecy. When someone believes something what won’t work, they will literally take actions to figure out how to make sure they do things in a way to where it does not work. Or they’ll test something once, and they’ll have a failure with it, they’ll be like “This just doesn’t work,” and they don’t go back and analyze what happened and why. And that’s the thing that’s really important to share, too. We share all of these strategies and methods and thoughts. You rarely are going to mail a postcard once and all of the sudden you’re going to get a 32 % response. Now, with the advice that you given, Dean, and putting the postcard up at I Love Marketing, this is something that you didn’t just think through in one day.

Dean: No, this is the kind of thing.

Joe: It’s takes years of thinking.

Dean: Yeah, absolutely. Now, I can do it much faster, because I’m able to channel the minds of whom it is that we’re going to. And there are so many different ways to use postcards, like this, and use data. There are so many great lists available now.

Joe: They’re cheaper…

Dean: They’re so cheap.

Joe: …than they used to. This business is really struggling.

Dean: Oh, yeah.

Joe: Because all of this interest and direction and focus, which used to be in offline advertising, is now in the online world. And people don’t just make individual stupid decisions to quit taking advantage of things. Entire companies’ and organizations’ departments that oversaw the generation of money and leads into organizations, all of a sudden got sold on the fact that, “Oh, this doesn’t work anymore. You’ve got to be online.” I will just say this: if people were to take 1/10 of the focus that they put in social media, and try to figure out how to make social media work, and directed 10% of that energy into like a postcard campaign…

Dean: Oh, it’s so scalable too.

Joe: …or direct mail, what they would do would probably 10X what it is they’re doing with their social media campaigns…

Dean: I agree.

Joe: …if they scaled it, of course.

Dean: I agree 100%.

Joe: So anyway. Alright. Are we going to do a full episode here, or are we going to do a short one?

Dean: We are. I’ve got so many things I want to talk about, still.

Joe: Oh, my god, Dean. You’re going to hate me. You know, when we were doing the thing, I never put it back on…

Dean: Record?

Joe: On record, the whole time.

Dean: Yes you did.

Joe: Yeah, I trying to punk you a line.

Dean: Oh, that’s so funny.

Joe: It is at that. For a minute, though, you started looking out this way.

Dean: I looked at the thing.

Joe: I wish I would have had a camera.

Dean: That’s funny.

Joe: Your eyes were getting all bugged out, and you’re like, “Oh, my god, we just lost an I Love Marketing episode!”

Dean: That’s so funny. So, birthdays are a great thing. So, I think if you own a local business, that’s a win, especially if you own things that could be wrapped around like celebratory things like going to a spa or going to a restaurant, or something like that, it’s fantastic. A great opportunity.

Joe: Well, no, no, no. So when you say celebratory things, like if you literally go online, and just type out all of the holidays for the year, and just print that out and put it up on your wall next too. Hopefully you have some sort of visual marketing calendar on the wall, that you see, a real one that you actually write on, not one online, not one that everyone can share, but whoever is the rainmaker/decision-maker in your world, that brings in business, you need a real visual calendar. And next to that, put holidays, or every type of event related to your industry.

Dean: Anything that’s kind of going on, that there’s some momentum that you can tie into what you do, that’s an incredible thing. Now, another opportunity that is really great for postcards, are new movers, people who move into a neighborhood. I know you must have done stuff like that with carpet cleaners.

Joe: Oh, we have, all the time. I have carpet cleaners that are buying lists of new homeowners, and they’re mailing consistently, every 12 to 18 months. First off, they’ll do a “Congratulations for moving into your home. If you ever need anything, blah, blah, blah,” put people on their newsletter list. But then, they have the campaigns that, “It’s been 12 months since you’ve been in your home. Now is the time to get the carpet cleaned,” 18 months, and that’s consistently done.

Dean: Yes.

Joe: And people are like “Wow!” because it’s personalized, and it gives a specific reason, not just get your carpets cleaned. See, the mere act of saying, “Get your carpets cleaned because it’s been 12 months,” is different than “Hire a carpet cleaner.”

Dean: Right. It’s like somebody paid attention.

Joe: Right.

Dean: And they start thinking, “Yeah, wow, it is 12 months,” or whatever.

Joe: Yeah, yeah.

Dean: So you can get list’s of new movers, people who have just moved into a new home, you can divide it up by income, you can do whatever, and offer something that’s going to get them to raise their hand. It’s pretty high-probability stuff, when somebody’s moving into a new area, they’ve got a lot of relationships that they need to reestablish – certainly a carpet cleaner, certainly any healthcare professionals. I’ve got a friend who owns a veterinarian hospital. Actually, Julie Matthews’ husband owns a vet clinic, and they were talking about just doing some new mover postcards. So, I got all the information for them. Let’s talk about maybe what he could do, so we can give some ideas for him there. If I were looking at that, I know that certainly some of the people, I forget what the percentage is, but more then half of people have some kind of a pet in their home. Do you know the numbers are?

Joe: Actually, you know what, I really don’t know.

Dean: It’s pretty high, though. Either cats or dogs, right?

Joe: What about rats, gerbils, amphibians, snakes…

Dean: Snakes, all that kind of stuff.

Joe: Yeah, ferrets, potbelly pigs.

Dean: So, if I were doing that…

Joe: Have you ever thought about getting a potbelly pig?

Dean: I’ve thought about it a lot, actually; more than you would think that a guy like me would think about that.

Joe: Right.

Dean: Yeah. But I’ve decided against it.

Joe: Okay.

Dean: So…

Joe: And begin.

Dean: So, what would you do? You own a veterinary hospital, and you get a list of new movers.

Joe: Yep.

Dean: And you want to mail a postcard to them. Typically, what we do with new movers is mail at least 3 postcards, once every 30 days, for the first 3 months, to get them to raise their hand.

Joe: First off, I would create… Well, there are several things. But one that just pops into my mind, and I’m not saying this is the best strategy in any particular order, because it’s like rattling off things.

Dean: Yeah. That’s what I mean; I want people to hear how we brainstorm.

Joe: A new homeowner’s guide to choosing a veterinarian.

Dean: Okay. So what did you call it? The new…?

Joe: The new homeowner’s guide to choosing…

Dean: To choosing a veterinarian.

Joe: A veterinarian.

Dean: So, you’d use some kind of consumer awareness guide.

Joe: Yeah. Or, “Free recorded message reveals how to choose the best veterinarian, when you’re brand new in an area,” something like that. You drive them to a free, recorded message, or you drive them online. You test it. You test it with a real, toll-free number, free, recorded message. People ask, “Well, where do you get these free recorded messages?” Well, there are a lot of different services. You can do a search.

Dean: You go to ILoveMarketing.com. Right on the right side of the website, there’s a link to free recorded hotlines, the service that Joe and I use.

Joe: Yeah. We use this ourselves and we recommend them. They’re very inexpensive, and they understand this sort of marketing. So, obviously, there’s wisdom there. I would do a combination. I would do both, really.

Dean: Okay.

Joe: You have a free, recorded message, and I would test them, so you know which one. And I would also drive them to your website, or send an email, “In order to have this sent to you.”

Dean: And that’s the thing. It’s very interesting. We talk about response mechanisms. I think people downplay or underestimate the value of just saying, “Send an email to…” If you can get a Gmail account set up, and use that as a URL, use the thing. I do that all the time.

Joe: Well, let me mention that, too, and here’s why. People come up with every kind of bullshit excuse in the world as to why they can’t do marketing, because they don’t have a website set up or they don’t have a landing page. And frankly, if you don’t know how to set up websites, I don’t know how to set up websites, I pay people to do this stuff, but it’s like…

Dean: You’ve got people for that.

Joe: Yes, there are individuals in the world that they do that.

Dean: That do that.

Joe: And they paint the roads, and all that. See that, that little elevator company? We’re driving through the city now. And there’s like a construction thing. Anyway, people do stuff. But the thing is people will come up with reasons as to why they don’t do marketing. And Dan Kennedy would always have this funny saying: “Don’t let logistics dictate marketing.” He would get so pissed when he would go to companies, and they’re like, “Oh, we can’t. We don’t have the resources.” “Well, set a freaking free Gmail.”

Dean: They’re making decisions based on logistics and not logic.

Joe: Right.

Dean: They use that all the time.

Joe: Right, right. And so basically, yeah, I would do that. Even with all the other things that we’ll talk about, that is a just a given. Create some sort of consumer information. I always default to that. The reason being is when someone has to sit and teach someone how to make an informed, intelligent decision, the strategic byproducts of sitting down and writing that consumer awareness guide or that free report, or recording that message, or recording a video that’s going to teach a new homeowner how to do it, what you are doing is creating copy and repurposeable content that can be used in all of the other formats, be it surveys or whatever else it is that you do. Another thing, “New to the area? Here are the 5 biggest frustrations people have when trying to find the right veterinarian.” It’s like who’s putting that out? Is that from a veterinarian? Is that from a survey company?

Dean: Right.

Joe: So you can do a combination of something to really play off of that.

Dean: I thought, immediately, about the consumer awareness guide, or some kind of a guide like that. It’d be interesting to test these approaches, to come up with something here. But my approach might be to send something to the pet. So, make the postcard come from a pet spokesman from the vet clinic.

Joe: Alright, wait. We’re going to do another video here, and Dean’s going to explain something. Okay, here we are, we’re doing a video, and there’s bright light on us. But see all these companies, Dean, over here, and grass?

Dean: Yeah, those are plants.

Joe: Do they pay for that? What is going on here?

Dean: Yeah, yeah. Those are like billboards, but they’re like on the side of the hill, they’re in flowers. Like there’s a Deloitte one, there’s a United Way one…

Joe: And we just passed them all. There were a whole slew of them back there. And we’re recording an I Love Marketing live episode.

Dean: They’re like postcards. I mean they’re like billboards.

Joe: They’re like postcards.

Dean: They’re like billboards.

Joe: What do you think they pay for those things?

Dean: Probably about $5,000 to $10,000 a month, I would bet.

Joe: Okay. I wonder if they’re doing postcard campaigns like we’re talking about on this episode?

Dean: I don’t know. They should be.

Joe: Yeah. What episode is this, by the way, Dean?

Dean: This is our diamond jubilee episode – 75 episodes together.

Joe: This is our 75 anniversary of I Love Marketing, and we’re talking about postcards.

Dean: Yeah, for the first time.

Joe: For the first time.

Dean: In depth.

Joe: And you’re going to put up on the website, which I think is really an amazing thing for people, you’re going to put up the birthday promotion and campaign, so people can actually get a model. I’m still looking at this video, thinking how bright I look. Almost angelic, because the sun is so bright on me, right now. So, anyway, if you’re watching this video and you haven’t listened to episode #75, go there now and do that. You’re going to hear mostly Dean, because when he’s driving, he loves to talk.

Dean: I love to talk.

Joe: Okay, I’m going to turn this off now. Go to ILoveMarketing.com. Now, I wanted to point out, to our listeners, because they’re thinking we’re just interrupting this broadcast in order for me to do a commercial, but we are. Think about it, the actual interruption of the broadcast is a commercial, and it’s part of the episode, too. How often do you actually see commercials being part? It does happen, here.

Dean: Product placement.

Joe: Yeah. So continue on, Dean.

Dean: So, okay, here’s the thing. I had this idea about choosing like a pet spokesperson for the vet clinic, and having a dog and a cat, because you don’t know for sure what they have. But you have a dog and a cat spokesperson. You send the postcard in language that’s speaking to the pet, so it’s not speaking to the owner of the pet. You’re speaking to the pet, and you’re offering them the Pets Guide to Lake Wales. And you have almost the cover of a magazine, or the cover of a guide, that has all the best places for pets in Lake Wales, where you talk about the best places to go and run, the best places to go and meet other pets, and maybe invite them to join the Pet Society of Lake Wales, or something like that. Like they’re the representatives of all the pets, and they want you, now that you’re a new pet in the area, they want to kind of welcome you to the neighborhood.

Joe: That is funny.

Dean: I think that might be a pretty cool thing. And when they went to the website, you could even have a video that’s dubbed where it’s the dog and the cat talking to the actual pet, welcoming them to Lake Wales, “We hope to see you at the dog park” kind of thing.

Joe: We should have carpet cleaners like have dust mites talking to each other in the carpet.

Dean: Absolutely. Well, there’s some kind of fun stuff like that.

Joe: Well, no, so let me…

Dean: I think that’s a pretty fun idea.

Joe: No, no, it is. Here’s what I want to say to that. For one, I’d love to have any of the people that are listening actually test this out and be creative.

Dean: Let’s get Mike to test it out, because I know they want to do something. I’ll tell Julie to tell Mike to listen to this episode. See what he says.

Joe: Who’s Mike? Who are you talking about?

Dean: Mike Matthews. I was telling you Julie’s husband is a veterinarian.

Joe: Okay. I’m not paying attention.

Dean: You really aren’t.

Joe: You’re just driving. I’m just holding this mic. I pipe in once in a while…

Dean: It’s disrespectful.

Joe: …and try to sound like I know what I’m talking about. Okay, here’s what I’m saying. You know how people can take things like this, and they can get so cutesy that it’s not going to work at all. This is not about being funny.

Dean: Absolutely.

Joe: I want to make that distinction, though, because people can go down a completely wrong path and say, “Oh, you know…”

Dean: Yeah. But you’ve got to have the purpose for it. And the purpose is to get somebody to go and download, or to go to that website to get this. And I think there’s probably something to that, about speaking to the pet and assuming, because you’re not going to know, with new movers, for sure, whether they actually have a pet, although you can get lists. I had those postcard guys run a list, like within 5 miles of the vet hospital. There are 3,000-something confirmed pet owners. So, you can mail to that list, specifically. But you’d mail something different when you know, for sure, that there’s a pet there. But when you’re mailing a new mover’s, you don’t know. But you should always assume that there is. Like if you’re going to somebody, and this applies to any business, you only speak to the 5-star prospects. Don’t even allude to the fact that “if you own a pet, or if you have a pet.”

Joe: You just assume that they do.

Dean: Just assume that they do, and speak directly to those people, because that’s the only one that matters.

Joe: Well, you know, there’s also a point, because I don’t want to forget to say this on this episode, is that with postcards, because of the ease and quickness that you can get them out, the lower postage rate, it’s actually a great way to clean your list also. And what I mean by cleaning your list is actually finding out who’s responsive, who’s not, who’s moved, who hasn’t moved, that sort of thing. So, before someone spends a lot of money dumping an expensive direct mail campaign on their list, they may want to make sure they’ve got the cleanest list, change of address, all the things to do.

Dean: Yeah, because you send a postcard, and you’re going to get back the nixes, you’re going to get back the undeliverables or change of address, or whatever, and it costs you 50¢ or less to do that.

Joe: I’m just thinking out loud here. We can add this to the list of future episodes, where we actually do an episode either just on the power of a list and how to go deeper with selecting the list, but maybe we can get one of our buddies, who’s a list expert online and offline, and just talk with him about doing that.

Dean: I could get these postcard guys on, because they do so many different things like this.

Joe: Yeah, maybe we should, because I think a lot of people here are definitely, at least the smart ones, are definitely excited about this, and we’ve opened up a lot of potential opportunities for them. But now it’s like, okay, what do we do and how do we do it, if there was a service? Like a lot of people have thanked us for making the free, recorded message thing. But it’s really doing more of a recommended thing. And, Dean actually is pulling out. I’m going to tell everyone where we’re at. We’re at a parking space. We’re going to Strategic Coach, to meet with Dan Sullivan and the whole marketing team, and I’m going to do some recordings with Dan for a new podcast that we’re doing called 10X Talk, and that’s going to be on Genius Network. So, we’re going to be brainstorming with them for a little bit, and so we just pulled over here, and Dean is handing our mysterious guest, who’s just stepped out to pay for this, and he’s got a Hello Kitty wallet.

Dean: Yeah, of course, I do.

Joe: And another video that we can share, Dean, I know this is a lot of videos, maybe not all on this episode, but where I actually gave you the Hello Kitty blanket at a recent platinum meetings, as a birthday gift. Right?

Dean: Yeah, yeah, you did. It was very sweet of you.

Joe: Okay, we’ve only got a few minutes left, so I want to kind of leave everyone with sort of the best place to go and what to do. And one thing I do want to mention, is that I heard this years ago, and I’ve always found this to be great, useful, powerful advice. Send 10 letters or postcards a day, personalized. Actually, think of who your sphere of influence is, and literally handwrite them, and give people an opportunity to hear from you – people that are not just business, but personal relationships. Stay in touch with people. So many people do not do this anymore. And, the power! If you say to someone, “I love you! I love you!” 10 times a day, it doesn’t seem to have the impact that if you…

Dean: Put it in writing.

Joe: Well, not just put it in writing. Well, that helps, too. But it’s like people hardly say anything anymore in print. People don’t mail postcards or stuff to people. So, basically, what my recommendation is, is that you get your sphere of influence, the most important vendors, joint venture partners, people along those lines. See, our mysterious guest is slamming the door here.

Dean: She’s probably getting another credit card. They don’t I’ll take American Express.

Joe: Oh. See, it’s your fault then.

Dean: It is.

Joe: Okay.

Dean: You bring a point, because one of the things that is valuable, if you’re going to do a new mover campaign or a birthday campaign, or something like that, is syndicating it. For instance, what we were doing with the birthday people is getting a collection of people together, to put up 4 or 5 gift cards for people. So, it said, “We all got together and got you something,” and you’re splitting the cost of that mailing. And when they come to the site, they get to download 4 or 5 different gift cards.

Joe: Right.

Dean: And maybe the same thing with the vet clinic. If you did the pet’s guide to Lake Wales, maybe there are other businesses that would be complementary but noncompetitive. Somebody who does pet grooming or pet boarding. Maybe they do all those things together, at the clinic, too. But pet food, all those different kind of things, pet sitting, somebody all get together and include that in the consumer awareness guide. You know?

Joe: Yep. Yep. So, this is awesome. So don’t we wrap up and tell people about the business breakthrough? Okay?

Dean: Yeah, absolutely. Okay. Here we go.

Joe: We’ve only got a few minutes left here, and people have been given some great advice here. What I’d recommend this week, if you really could just take 5 days out of the next 7 days, and mail 10 postcards a day to important people, just saying, “Hey, hello, thank you.” It might be a client that you just want to say, “Thanks for the referrals.” It might be someone that you have an opportunity you want to present to them. It might be a family member that you want to just say, “I love you, and I think you’re awesome.” Just get yourself in the habit of mailing out some postcards. And also, Dean, you may want to drive up to Strategic Coach headquarters, so we can drop off our luggage and not have to lug it down the street and then come back here. See, I’m having to like basically tell you what to do.

Dean: A logistical, and that is brilliant.

Joe: While we are driving through a parking lot, and we’ve got luggage in the back.

Dean: That is brilliant.

Joe: Because, I don’t live here.

Dean: No, I understand.

Joe: I live in Arizona, and I’ve got my luggage in the back.

Dean: That is brilliant.

Joe: And I’m staying with Dan and Babs tonight. They have a couple of homes, and they’re awesome. So anyway…

Dean: Okay. That’s a good idea. I’ll do that.

Joe: Alright, so… Business breakthrough.

Dean: Okay, so. We’re doing, now, starting on July 15, our Breakthrough DNA Blueprint Program.

Joe: And if heard this episode after July 15, that doesn’t mean that you can’t do this.

Dean: Right. Exactly. We’re just starting. We’re launching on July 15, leading up to the I Love Marketing conference in October.

Joe: October 3, 4, 5, which you need to mark that on your calendars, the most important 3 days of the entire year.

Dean: Absolutely. In Phoenix. Beautiful Phoenix.

Joe: It’s actually nice during that period of time.

Dean: Oh, yeah. It’s nice.

Joe: It really is.

Dean: So, here’s what we want to do. We want to use this opportunity. We’ve got 10 weeks, starting on July 15, to go through a 10-week Breakthrough Blueprint Program, and go really deep in the 8 profit activators, and create some breakthroughs, some case studies that we can brag about at the conference in October. So, what we’re going to do, because we just want to work with a handful of people leading up to that, that we can give some personal attention to doing some Q&A calls with Joe and I, there’s a whole curriculum that you’ll be going through with some exercises and homework, we’ll be working on your samples and actually creating marketing pieces there. And we’re going to do this program. The Breakthrough Blueprint Program is free, when you register to attend the conference in October. We’re not charging any more to go through the Breakthrough Blueprint Program. It’s $997, is the early bird price to come to the I Love Marketing conference, and you get to go through this Breakthrough Blueprint Program with us starting on July 15, for the whole 10 weeks. So, we’re very excited about that. We’ve been shooting some videos over the last couple of days, and getting all ready for that. And I think we’re going to have some incredible breakthroughs between now and when the conference actually starts.

Joe: And it will be so incredible that at the conference. We’re going to have Lou Ferrigno as one of our special guests, the Incredible Hulk.

Dean: Very exciting.

Joe: There’s going to a lot of business breakthroughs. It’s going to be awesome. So, watch the videos at ILoveMarketing.com. We’ll also post a couple of these other nonsensical videos that I recorded while we were driving around.

Dean: Yeah, and some postcard samples. This is a big week over at ILoveMarketing.com. If you normally just listen on iTunes, this is the week to go over and check out ILoveMarketing.com, because you’re going to see all of the samples that we’ve been talking about, and see these videos.

Joe: Yeah, exactly. So, on behalf of myself and Dean… Look, Dean, you just passed the hour mark. We are right there. This is perfect, if we have to do any crazy editing, which I doubt we will. So, thank you for listening to I Love Marketing. And if you are someone that has listened to every single episode of I Love Marketing, all 75 episodes, please comment on ILoveMarketing.com, underneath this episode, and let us know. And I know we’ve got a lot of loyal fans. I know we’ve got a lot of people that running Meetup groups all over the world, for I Love Marketing, and we just really appreciate how this has grown into a movement, and tens of thousands of people all over the world are benefiting from this. So, thank you very much. We hope you found this valuable, and we’ll talk to you on the next episode.

Dean: Awesome.  

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