May 28, 2010

Digital and Direct Marketing: Elements of Promotion

"I have never tried to be original in my life." –Mozart

I believe in stealing ideas. What works in one country often works in another country too. It's much easier to use time-tested methods than to re-invent the wheel every time – especially in marketing. Inspired by Mozart here we go.

Bob Stone and Ron Jacobs, the authors of Successful Direct Marketing Methods, say there are five elements of promotion. Here they are with their weight in a direct marketing program:

      • List / Media 40%
      • Offer 20%
      • Layout / Format 15%
      • Copy 15%
      • Timing 10%

The traditional elements of a direct marketing program are list/media 40%, offer 40% and creative 20%. Because we live in a world where everything can be measured, I recommend the more detailed approach. But don't fall in love with numbers – only measure things relevant to you.

Most people make the mistake to focus on the creative side rather than finding answer that has weight in the scale. If you compare the old and new approach you will notice that creative gets only 20-30% of the weight – while picking the right media with a good offer brings 60-80% of the success of your marketing program.

By the way, I'm sorry that I haven't been writing to you as much as usually during the past three months. I will try to write more.

I'm proud to announce that lately I have been pushing
forward our new business AdEffie online advertising network in Finland. In the past weeks I have got many new clients – including Reader's Digest.

Until next time,


May 20, 2010

Ad Man's Book Club: May 2010 Choice

Writing That Works: How to Communicate Effectively in Business - Kenneth Roman and Joel Raphaelson

"It's the Strunk and White of the business world" promises the cover.

I read The Elements of Style by William Strunk and E.B. White, after Matti Apunen, editor in chief of Aamulehti (Finland's second largest newspaper) recommended it to me when I asked him how to write better.

This article should be a triumph for both books, but because we are both in a hurry, let's focus today on Writing That Works.

You may be surprised how much you write. Today emails, Twitter and Facebook force you to write much more than you would have ten years ago – and it's public. How many emails do you send daily? How people see you based on your emails?

Here is my point. You will be judged based on your writing more and your physical presence less. While people skills are probably the most important skills you will ever need in life, today, it is your writing in business that people judge before you get to meet them.

Think about what Google does. It's a master at scanning and understanding text. For Google, pictures are still secondary. If over 90 per cent of business starts from a Google search, how important is your written material?

Let's boldly assume that you are now just a little more motivated to learn how to improve your writing. Writing That Works is just the right tool for you. It's clear, easy to read and has less than 200 pages.

Writing That Works will teach you how to write:
  • Presentations that move ideas to action
  • Memos and letters that get things done
  • Plans and reports that make things happen
  • Fund-raising and sales letters that produce results
  • Resumes and letters that lead to interviews
  • Speeches that make a point

Why should you listen to these authors?
Kenneth Roman is former Chairman and CEO of Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide. Joel Raphaelson is former Executive Creative Director of the same company. After David Ogilvy finished writing Ogilvy on Advertising, he sent it to Joel with a note saying: "Please improve".

By the way, a good to way improve your writing is to read more.

You can get Writing That Works from Amazon

May 3, 2010

8 Ways How to Write Better

1. Clear headlines. 80 per cent of your readers decide based on your headline whether to read your message or not.
2. Brevity. Use short simple words. For example, pick the word Use over Utilize. Make sure that everyone understands you. Winston Churchill says, "Broadly speaking, the short words are the best, and the old words best of all."
3. Use numbered lists to tie your text together. Numbers make your message faster to read and easier to refer to.
4. Don't write when you can say it in person.
5. Does your writing sound like a real person talking? It should. Write the way you speak. I hope you don't speak the way most people write.
6. Learn your grammar. My grammar is horrible, I know. But at least I'm working on it.
7. Use sub-headings to make your long texts easier – and more interesting – to read.
8. End your message with a call to action. Make it clear exactly what you want your reader to do. I.e. "Can you comment this by the end business on Friday?"
And here's one little suggestion more for you – keep studying. The best resource I know about copywriting is here.

Popular Posts