Sunday, June 18, 2006

Direct Mail Affiliate Marketing

An Overlooked Marketing Strategy for Home Based Business Owners
Author: Jim Guinn

Suddenly, everyone is doing it - launching their own online home based business. It is estimated that by the end of 2005, over half the adult population in the United States will be involved with a home based business of their own or a relative or friend.

Customers are hard enough to find now a days even using the popular home based business marketing strategies. And, with the ever-growing influx of new entrepreneurs, the competition for customers gets tougher and tougher as the clock ticks.

So, what is a home based business owner to do to get more customers? Why not go back to basics.

Direct Mail (Snail Mail) Marketing is one of the oldest and most profitable strategies for gaining new customers. It has been around for years. Why? Because it works!

Now, I’m sure if you are anything like me, you plow through a lot of snail mail each day, most of it unsolicited and unwanted. I use a Post Office Box in my town, and whenever I pick up my mail, I am amazed at the overflowing garbage cans in the Post Office lobby where most box owners sort through their mail.

But, what if you could snail mail advertisements to people who wanted information on home based business opportunities or wanted to buy your product or service? For the price of a lead, postcard and postage, your message would reach many interested prospects. And, since this strategy is used by so few home based business owners, it is sure to catch the eye of the reader, especially if it is something that interests them.

A Direct Mail campaign is easy and inexpensive to produce. There are companies that specialize in direct mail lists. These lists can be highly refined and most companies will parse their lists for the exact criteria you are looking for such as: gender, age, state, zip code, income, marital status, credit cards, education, occupation, interests/hobbies, buying patterns, and, yes, even home based business opportunity seeks. Here are a couple of samples of direct mail target audiences from a site selling direct mail lists:

-Responding to 100% direct mail business opportunities such as card decks these avid business opportunity buyers are interested in making money and quick! List is 95% Male.
-These entrepreneurs and opportunity seekers have purchased leads, responded to startup opportunities, and publications concerned with franchise and business opportunities.
-Ambitious business opportunity seekers took action by mailing cash to receive information packet on various How To Programs.
-Consumers who have completed and mailed questionnaires indicating that they are interested in sweepstakes and lottery.

Many companies will sell you quality direct mail lists for as little as 15 to 25 cents a lead. You can buy postcards for as little as 15 to 25 cents each – many printing companies will even do free design and layout of your ad if they do the printing. Now, put these together with a 23 cent stamp, and you are only paying about 60 to 75 cents per advertisement.

Now, you may think that is expensive, but what if I told you I get between a 9% and 13% return each and every time I do a direct mail campaign. I pay $60 to $75 per 100 advertisements, and I average 9-13 new customers each time. Each new customer spends an average of $100! I can do it for a whole lot less if I send out 250, 500, or even 1000 or more since most companies will give discounts on direct mail leads and larger print orders.

When was the last time you received a return on your investment like this using the traditional marketing strategies being employed by most home based business owners?

As I said earlier, direct mail marketing is one of the oldest and most profitable strategies for gaining new customers. It has been around for years. Why? Because it works! So, why not go back to basics in your next marketing campaign. Use direct mail.

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