Yes, We Do That

The Allied Group is New England's leading provider of Printing, Kitting, Mailing and Fulfillment services. Our blog authors have backgrounds in Sales, Marketing, IT, Production and Operations and post useful tips, trends, news and opinions in our industry and beyond. We know you'll find something you enjoy. Most of all, be sure to jump into the conversation!

The 10 Most Persuasive Words in Copywriting

b2ap3_thumbnail_BusinessDevelopment.jpgWeb design and graphic design is the style while copywriting is the substance. The words you use are the most important factor in persuading your customers to buy from you. Here are 10 proven persuasive words in direct marketing:

1. FREE
No one likes paying for stuff. Everyone likes getting things for free. My mom regularly walks two miles into town armed with a coupon she cut out of the daily newspaper.

2. YOU
While humanity in general has the capacity for amazing acts of selfless generosity people are self-interested when it comes to reading ads. If you're not talking about them directly then they'll find something else to do.

3. GUARANTEED
If you can guarantee something then this immediately eradicates the risk for the reader. Less risk means more willingness to buy.

Continue reading
0 Comments

Looking at the "Social" in Social Media

b2ap3_thumbnail_bandwagon.jpgI'm just as guilty as anyone. I've jumped on the bandwagon and embraced all the tactics...blogging, tweeting, posting, inviting, connecting...certainly more to do, but you get the idea. So I guess you could say the "media" part of social media. And I guess that makes sense. As a contributor in a marketing communications company, it would seem logical that I would be active in all these areas.

But as a top direct marketing agency looking to embrace and incorporate social media as one of our primary lead generation methods, you could say that I'm missing 50% of the equation. What about the "social" part?

 

Easily overlooked, it's the most fundamental aspect of business development in general. It's probably not a coincidence then that the overall business climate and atmosphere has gotten more personal. It used to be that there was a separation between who you were as a professional and who you were as an individual. The two didn't necessarily have to be bipolar, but you wore your wing tips at work, and your slippers at home. And you didn't ever mix them up.

Continue reading
0 Comments

The U.S. Women’s Gymnastic Team’s Lessons for American Business

The U.S. Women’s Gymnastic Team’s Lessons for American Business

In one of the greatest victories in the history of gymnastics, the U.S. women’s gymnastics team won its first team goal medal since 1996. It was only the second time in history that a U.S. women’s gymnastics team had won the gold.

There was plenty of drama. That started with world champion Jordyn Weiber’s tears after her heartbreaking exclusion from the all-around final. Then came NBC’s story on the tremendous sacrifices Gabby Douglas’ single mother (see video) made to send her teenage daughter hundreds of miles away to train with a world-class coach, hoping to make her Olympic dream come true. Finally, there was McKayla Maroney’s broken big toe, which she had determined would not prevent her from competing.

Of course, you know what happened. After Weiber’s depressing letdown, “She had about five minutes of disappointment, and she let it cry out,” related personal coach John Geddert. “And then she immediately responded with, ‘We’ve got work to do on Tuesday.’ ” Weiber’s work paid off, as she led off Team USA’s first rotation with high marks on a very difficult vault. “When she went out there and nailed that vault, it was contagious,” said Douglas, who came next and got even higher marks. Finally came the injured Maroney, whose vault seemed to soar to the rafters and nearly reached perfection. Before the night was over, the U.S. team had won by an astounding 5.066 points.

Continue reading
0 Comments

5 Secrets to Success with Direct Mail

5 Secrets to Success with Direct Mail

1. Realistic Expectations
I'm beginning to sound like a broken record with this one. There are no magic solutions. Direct Mail and other lead generation methods as stand-alone tactics in a vacuum are basically useless. Direct mail, whether personalized direct mail or one to one communication, is a great component of a complete direct marketing program. Stick to the basics...tell your prospect why your product/service is unique, why they should buy from you and why they should buy from you now. And then remember, unless you catch lightning in a bottle or miraculous timing (which can happen) people don't typically make a buying decision right on the spot. They need time to further educate themselves and let it "stew" a bit before they take any action.

Continue reading
0 Comments

4 Ways Marketing Can Help you Get Paid Faster

b2ap3_thumbnail_marketing20communications20company.jpgWhen we think of marketing and developing a successful integrated marketing communications program what tends to come to mind first are the 4 P's, new business development, direct marketing postcards and maybe how marketing and sales support each other, or could be better aligned. But what about applying marketing concepts to your business process? For this post, let's look at how we can use marketing to get paid faster:

1. Profile and Segment. You most likely already do this. You just don't apply the criteria for business process purposes. You put a lot of thought into profiling an "ideal client"...well part of what makes a client ideal is how they pay. You don't need to judge who's better or worse, but include that criteria to segment your prospects and maintain that information as they become a client. You'll then know which clients will pay best, and which ones you may have to apply tips 3-4 on...

Continue reading
0 Comments

A Psychology Lesson at Penn State

This week, Penn State received severe penalties from the NCAA, worse than the  “death  penalty,” once the most stringent discipline meted out to athletic programs that break NCAA rules. This punishment is well-deserved. For unlike previous perpetrators who showed callous disregard for the rules of collegiate sports, officials at Penn State displayed total disregard for the welfare of children.

The men at the helm of this otherwise distinguished educational institution, in the words of investigator and former FBI Director Louis Freeh, “failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect the children who Sandusky victimized."  University officials, including legendary Head Coach Joe Paterno, “never demonstrated through actions or word any concern for the safety and wellbeing of Sandusky’s victims until after Sandusky’s arrest.” In fact, this damning report went on to say, “Although concern to treat the child abuser humanely was expressly stated, no such sentiments were ever expressed by them to Sandusky’s victims.”

 How could it happen?

 The first allegation at Penn State in 1998 was investigated by the campus police.  A NY Times report on that query stated: “Sandusky admitted showering naked with Victim 6, admitted to hugging Victim 6 while in the shower and admitted that it was wrong,” said the report issued last weekend by the Pennsylvania attorney general. “Detective Schreffler advised Sandusky not to shower with any child again and Sandusky said that he would not.”

Somehow Paterno, Sandusky’s boss, figured that the matter had been put to rest.  Yet when his former quarterback, now grad assistant Mike McQueary reported seeing the Defensive Coordinator molesting a child in the shower, Freeh states that Paterno told him, “You did what you had to do.  It is now my job to figure out what we want to do.” He did nothing.  With children’s welfare at stake, how could a father and grandfather take no action?  It’s easy to note that they weren’t his grandsons, and Sandusky was a valued colleague. But there’s a psychological component as well.

...
Continue reading
0 Comments

Spray and Pray...Yeah, That's What I Say!

Well, kind of. If you talked to any lead generation agencies or strategic marketing consultancy firms now, or going back a couple of years... the term "spray and pray" would certainly have to be followed by the prerequisite chuckle or at least a smirk. But why would such a popular tactic maybe 5 years ago or longer now be a virtual curse word or insult? Cuz people don't get it.

We're talking about the top of the funnel here folks! I know I'm going down a slippery credibility slope now, but at this stage in the process I want as many people as my funnel can muster. In general, I want you, your friends, your grandma and your podiatrist to know who I am, what I do and how to get in touch with me if you need to. I want to be top of mind.

Of course this "approach" began to lose it's appeal in the world of corporate marketing communications when the only tools in your tool belt were direct marketing postcards and data to print. It simply costs too much to reach out to a large group of unqualified people via print (and many other media) and then fold your hands neatly together and kneel in front of your phone.

But that's a different argument. It simply means you probably shouldn't use print as a cold local lead generation method! To me, as marketing technology has advanced, I've got my CRM, Marketing Automation, and social media to help me manage and track my leads, develop appropriate nurture campaigns and fantastic forums to push my content out. Maybe it's just a matter of changing "spray and pray" to another old adage, "the more the merrier!"

0 Comments

Top Ten Tips to Total Traffic Triumph!

Top Ten Tips to Total Traffic Triumph!

Do you want to build the top of your funnel? Well, here's my top ten and I'm even going to stick with the "T" theme:

 

10: TEST. Tests don't have to be complicated. As a matter of fact, the more complicated you make them, the more suspect the results. A good old A/B split is enough. Do it with every campaign.

 

9: TRY. Don't be afraid! Most people don't bite. If you've used direct marketing postcards in the past, regardless of the results, you have to keep it fresh and try new things. Don't necessarily abandon what has worked in the past, but realize that sooner or later, it won't work as well as it did.

...
Continue reading
0 Comments

Lessons from Flo and the Gecko – Part One

b2ap3_thumbnail_GEICO20gecko.jpgIt seems they’re everywhere – the GEICO Gecko and Flo, the Progressive sales lady. And while some find them irritating, even aggravating, there’s no denying their impact. CNN Money reports that GEICO added 700,000 new policies last year; the insurer’s website reports that its policy base reached a total of 11 million this spring. As the U.S. economy slowly adds insurable risks, the gecko is doing his job winning consumers.

Flo the Progressive lady is earning her share of business as well. After sales dipped in 2008, Progressive used Flo to aggressively promote its direct sales website to television viewers. It’s now one of the Internet’s most popular insurance sites. Company sales grew by 3% in 2009 and 2010, expanding by 3.6% in 2011.

Why Flo and the Gecko Sell Insurance

The challenge with selling automobile insurance is that state-regulated policies are a commodity.  There are not a lot of coverage distinctions to highlight. Therefore, key differentiators include company strength, service and price. Carriers like Amica (as The Allied Group’s marketing and design staff well knows) can accentuate all three. GEICO and Progressive have chosen to focus on price, a winning strategy in a struggling economy.

Continue reading
0 Comments

Reducing “No Shows” at Admissions Events – Part Two

Ah, summer at last! Unfortunately, for many enrollment officers, easy summers disappeared with the crest of the high school population wave. All their marketing communication strategies, effective yield programs and one to one communication may have produced a promising incoming class. But these days, numbers that look good in May could easily melt away by September.

 

Now institutions have events planned to keep the newly deposited freshman class fully engaged so that no competitor can snatch them away before classes begin. Getting interested prospects to admissions events is important, but making sure that accepted students and deposited freshmen attend events designed for them could be crucial.

 

 

Part One showed how social psychology’s Commitment/Consistency Principle can help. It outlined an experiment in which a restaurant reduced no-shows by 66% just by asking those making reservations to agree that they would call if they needed to cancel. Getting people’s agreement to live up to the arrangements they’ve made is very helpful. But to really assure that people will fulfill their end of the bargain – get it in writing.

Continue reading
0 Comments

25 Amflex Drive | Cranston, RI 02921 | p: 401-946-6100

Back to top