If you'll just spend 30-60 minutes a day tightly focused on your direct mail efforts, you can generate huge success. I know this for a fact, because it works for me – and if it can work for an everyday joe like me, it can work for you, too.
So many business owners spend so much time working in their businesses that they never actually work on them. You might get to the end of the day and know you were busy all day long, but when you look back, you can not pinpoint anything productive. There are a lot of things that go into making your business run, like working on payroll, paying taxes, trying to balance your books, operating your cash register, ordering supplies and products, fixing equipment, and dealing with crises. If you spend all your time and energy on these things, you may wonder where all that time went and why you're accomplishing little more than a holding action.
You make money by selling more to existing customers and bringing in new customers, so find a little time in the day when you focus on nothing but that – especially in terms of building your business through direct mail. It adds up, and you'll see the results in increased activity, increased sales, and an increase in customers coming into your store – all of which will result in increased revenue for your business.
So take some time, sit down, and start documenting some ideas on how to improve your business and develop better offers.
If you're most comfortable in the paper and ink world, you might start with a yellow legal pad and pen. If you prefer the digital world, type into MS Word or a similar word progressing program. Make sure you have plenty of your favorite beverage on hand. If you focus early in morning, as I do, that might be coffee; If you're a night person, diet soda or herbal tea might work better. No matter when you spend your time on your business, just spend that time. All it takes is 30-60 minutes, focused specifically on writing sales copy or on coming up with ideas for ads, sales letters, fliers, brochures or anything else you're doing via direct response marketing. Concentrate and develop specific sales copy and techniques you can use for your business.
Remember: it's important at this point in the game not to feel that you have to spend that productive time producing a whole sales letter or order form. This could be time sent jotting down headlines, sales ideas, or simply offers you want to make. Whatever the case, it's focused on putting copy on paper that you can use in one way or another. If you'll do that for an hour a day, that's 365 hours of nothing but thinking and creatively dreaming per year. If you spend just 30 minutes a day, it's half of that – but it's still almost 200 hours over the course of a year.
Maybe you started out not doing anything like this; maybe sales copy is a new concept for you, or you've only dumbled in it a little. But if you commit an hour a day to writing sales copy, you'll learn vastly more about marketing, you'll learn more about selling by mail, and you'll become a better copywriter all around, assuming you're using the right principles and strategies. You'll end up with more sales copy going out to your marketplace, because you'll be turning some of these ideas and thoughts into offers. That will increase your activity, potentially increasing your sales and profits. Ultimately, that focus on sales copy and ideas will be productive for you.
This is crucial, especially in a small business where the owner wears all the hats. This all-in-one role limits your focus on things that actually result in increased business. So make time for this strategy. All of those other things will still be there, but you'll find yourself energized and excited about your new ideas and daily productivity. Looking at it right now, it might seem like a daunting challenge; but when you look back six months or a year from now, you'll see the fruits of that labor. This will not take anything away from what you're already doing; quite the contrary. It adds something that will have a measurable impact on your bottom line. There's no question about it.
We all know that focus is the important thing – and most of us know we do not focus like we should. But it's necessary to spend time looking at the potential and problems in our businesses, and then to strive for the right solutions. The most successful entrepreneurs and business people are those who spend time focusing on improvement. Just being in the business becomes a morass of phone calls, problems to be resolved, meetings, distractions, and all the other things that are really just parts of the machinery of business and day-to-day consumption. When you get outside the business, in your mind's eye at least, you can focus on what's important.
I advise everyone to consider doing this. I get up about 5 AM every morning and focus on business. I especially like thinking about direct mail math. Suppose you test a postcard for $ 500 per thousand, and these postcards give away an absolutely free book. Suppose you're opening the funnel as wide as you can, getting as many prospective buyers as possible to call a toll-free number and listen to a one- or two two-minute message. You're making it easy for people to say yes, and very hard for them to say no.
If you mail 1,000 postcards for $ 500 and get a 5% response, that means 95 out of every 100 people wrap the card in the trashcan – but five want the free book. That's 50 leads per thousand, or $ 10 a lead. See how easy it is? Of course, there are some fulfillment costs, and I'm excluding those. The point is, if you pay $ 10 a lead, what do you have to do to get that money back right away? How many initial sales do you have to make? You can spend hour after hour just running it all through in your head.
This can boost your confidence. You just have to know what it costs, what percentage of response you require to get a certain number of leads, and then the amount you need to make on an initial sale to be able to spend a certain amount of money. So I encourage you to dream, scheme, plan, plot, and think about all the different ways you can make money with direct mail during a specific slot in your schedule.
It all starts in your head; money is born as ideas. It's the quality and quantity of thinking you do as you're working on it, rather than in it, that really matters.