MGI Tipster Volume 1, Issue 4

Do you know…the basics of direct marketing success?

Sometimes it’s smart to get back to basics.This month we offer a quick review of some direct marketing fundamentals and how they work to build successful membership and product growth. Why direct marketing? Because…

  • The economics are precise: you know what it costs and you know what it earns. You have broad reach, yet you can pinpoint specific markets.It enables testing to learn what works…and what doesn’t.
  • It makes possible personalized


Research pays off. If you don’t already know, it should tell you important information such as:

  • Who are–and who are not–potential members and customers. Where you can find them and how you can reach them.What they want, what they need, and how you can deliver it.Who your competitors are, and what and how they are doing.
  • What the market trends are and what your share of the market is.

Tip: These answers help you set realistic growth and revenue goals and frame your action plan.


There are three fundamentals for direct marketing success:

  • The List: who is being targeted and how they can best be reached.The Offer: what you are proposing that they do or buy, and why they should.
  • The Creative: what is your message and how do you tell it.

Tip: Experts say the List contributes 40% to your success, the Offer 40%, and Creative just 20%. It’s not how pretty it looks but what you propose and to whom you propose it.


  • Best Lists: Your own – past members, current buyers,attendees, inquirers.Good Lists: Others’ responders – members, subscribers,attendees,buyers.Okay Lists: Semi-response – controlled circulation for unpaid subscribers.
  • Fair Lists: Compiled – directories, white pages, and government records.

Tip: Always be on the lookout for prospects and update your lists to keep them fresh.


  • Engage your prospect and answer their question: what’s in it for me?Meet an emotional need: satisfy a desire or relieve anger or pain.Give proof that the offer really works.
  • Give a reason to act–right away.

Tip: Test different offers to find out which ones your market responds to best.


  • You have less than five seconds to grab–and keep–attention. Describe benefits, not features–what does the offer do for your prospect? Put the offer up front and repeat it on your reply device.
  • Be sure to ask for the order.

Tip: Keep to the point and don’t be wordy. Let your prospects know exactly what to do.

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