Successful mail order dealers realize there are two distinct groups of publications in which to place advertising for maximum results.
The first group includes newspapers and magazines designed to fill the needs, wants and interests of the "general public". Theses "national" publications can be found on newsstands across the nation.
The second group is what are called "trade" publications. This consists of hundreds of mail order magazines, newspapers, ad sheets, etc. Contrary to what some publishers of these "trades" claim, very few copies get into the hands of the general public. Over 90% of the readers are mail order dealers or those thinking of entering mail order.
While an advertisement placed in one of the general public newspapers or magazines may bring astronomical results, the identical ad may fall flat when inserted in a mail order trade publication... Likewise, and ad that has sensational pulling power in one of the trades, may get little or no response when it appears in national publications... As with any other profession, most mail order dealers are interested in what's happening in their own field, plus they also read national newspapers & magazines. However, the general public reads national publication, but about 99% have very little interest in the "internal" affairs of mail order. They couldn't care less. This is very important to remember when placing ANY ads.
Readers of mail order publications are interested in two basics needs. First, how they can build-up their business and increase their income. Second, ways of saving money. Unless what you have to offer falls into either of these two categories, ads placed in any mail order trade publications are simply a waste of money.
With so many hundreds and hundreds of mail order trade publications from which to choose, the logical question is, where will an ad get the best results? There is no 100% accurate answer? It is a matter of "testing".
When selecting a publication to place an ad for the first time, there are several things to be wary of.. First, check the names of the advertisers appearing in the issue you have available. If some of the better known names in mail order are represented, you can be assured it is a good newspaper or magazine to "try". Most of these veterans know what they are doing and make certain their ad dollars are wisely spent. So, follow the leaders!
Next, check the amount of "filler" copy that appears in the publication. If more space is devoted to articles than to advertisements, it is very possible that the publication is "floundering"! Remember, it is the ads and NOT the articles that support any publication. Lack of ads means the publication does not have advertisers... Lack of advertisers generally signifies that others have tried advertising in that publication and were disappointed at the results. They would then naturally stop advertising. However, if you enjoy the articles and find them informative, it is wiser to pay a small fee for a subscription and forget about advertising.
A second warning signal of where NOT to advertise is by the amount of space a publisher devotes to his or her own offers. Let's face it. Any publisher would rather fill their publication with ads of cash-paying customers. But if dealers are reluctant to buy ad space, and generally for good reason (poor response from previous ads), the publisher has no alternative but to fill up the pages with his or her offers. Other wise many of the pages would be blank.
If you've been in mail order for more than a month...chances are you've been ripped off by one or more ad sheet printers. This report won't make you a mail-order genius but might keep you from loosing your shirt prematurely.
Regardless of what you're trying to sell, you really can't sell it without "talking" with your prospective buyer. An in attempting to sell anything by mail, the sales letter you send out is when and how you talk to your prospect.
When you have accumulated sufficient knowledge from preparing your own circulars and from co-publishing magazines and ad sheets of others, you may want to become a publisher.
The opportunities for getting free advertising for your product or services are limited only by your own imagination and energies.
Most business beginners think Direct Mail means purchasing a mailing list and mailing an advertising flyer to a bunch of folks they know absolutely nothing about. This IS NOT what Direct Mail marketing is.
What is a Big Mail? If you are a total beginner to the mail order world, you will have no idea what the term means. Before I knew better, I used to think a Big Mail was just a big envelope containing some type of free samples.
There have been entire volumes written on mail order selling. For printed information, the best way to learn HOW & WHERE to advertise is to go to your newsstand and check through all the magazines carrying large numbers of classified and space ads.
This method of getting free printing is currently being used by several different mail dealers. It works! Here's the plan: Run an ad similar to this in any mail order magazine:
Here are some interesting results of a study conducted on readerships of magazine ads. Most of the stats are from Starch INRA Hopper, Inc and other studies.
An average mailing by a small, one person mail order company is generally about a thousand pieces, and many such operators rarely mail more than a hundred pieces per week.