Before I start talking about today’s topic I want to state that I have never done a direct mailing campaign.
Of course, I have read many business opportunity manuals which deal with direct mail and all are adamant that it is a very lucrative field to get into - providing you do it correctly.
So, if I was to take the plunge and spend several thousands of pounds sending out a mailing I would make 100% sure that everything was perfect.
Judging by the amount of direct mail I receive, I am on several big mailing lists. I get loads of business opportunity sales letters through the post every week. Most are very well packaged and written - whoever sent them took the time to make sure everything was perfect before they got the printers to start preparing their mailings.
Every so often, though, I get a sales letter which seems to have slipped through the proof-reader’s net.
It makes me wonder why somebody would take the time to prepare a mailing, spend a whole load of money to send out several thousand direct mail pieces and basically risk a load of money but neglect to check their mailing for mistakes.
Take for example a recent direct mail sales letter I got - I won’t say who sent it or what business opportunity it was trying to sell but this was from a big name in the business.
First page of the printed letter said:
“In the 5 minutes it takes to read this website…”
So, obviously this has simply been lifted from a website and printed onto A4 before being sent.
Onto page 9:
“…I have shown you [proof] and you can see the actual national press articles that have been written about me…”
Problem is that the articles and proof mentioned here is freely available on the web but not in this printed sales letter so it makes no sense and this sentence should have been removed because the reader cannot see the proof mentioned here.
There were more little slip ups in the text but the best mistake was saved for the back page, on the order form it says:
“Please rush me [name of biz opp] for an unbeatable £347″
And then a couple of lines down it says:
“I enclose a cheque/postal order(s) to the sum of £397…”
“Or, please debit my credit/debit card with the sum of £397…”
In just 4 inches of paper, the price increased by £50 and probably confused the vast majority of people who may have been ready to order.
Had this been an email campaign then it is pretty easy to rectify - you can just send a follow-up email pointing out the mistake and apologising.
However, direct mail campaigns are expensive and a follow-up here would cost the same again, doubling the cost of the campaign.
The point is - if you are going to mail out some sales packages make sure that everything is 100% correct. Read through the pack thoroughly and then get a couple of other people to do the same.
Better yet, find a proofreader to do it for you and you can avoid huge mistakes like putting the wrong price on the order form!