Direct Marketing Friend,
Welcome to the special Super Bowl edition of
Direct Marketing Update! Let’s get
right to it, because there are 4 very important marketing
points you should know...
1. Super Bowl XLV ads: What a
waste of advertising dollars
Imagine you had the opportunity to have a 30-second ad for
your product or service shown to over 60 million households—an
average of 111 million viewers watched Super Bowl XLV.
You would want to get the most out of it right?
Especially if that ad cost $100,000 for every second. What
would you do to make every dollar count?
Here is what I
- Have a
call to action (CTA)
- Have a
way to measure response
- Have a
prominent Toll-Free number that’s specific to the campaign
- Have a
landing page URL onscreen and keep it there long enough
for the audience to see it
- Even consider a text response
How many big-spending advertisers actually did that? Almost
Sunday’s big game set a new record for U.S.
television viewership. But every 30 seconds of commercial
time—every funny animal, special effect and talking baby—was
like watching $3 million go down the drain.
Many ads did manage to insert their company URL at the
end…for the last second…usually in unreadable white…and not
linked to a specific campaign. It seemed the advertisers
considered the URL as just “housekeeping.”
- Budweiser ads, known for
their humor, did provide a Facebook URL. But it was
virtually invisible. It wasn’t tied to a specific campaign.
And it was only on the screen for a second. Most people
- RITZ Crackers also
included a Facebook page for viewers to view RITZ game day
recipes by Chef Guy Fieri. But again the URL sped by too
fast. I doubt anyone could have seen it.
- Apparently, Coke was just too
cool to even put up a URL.
One of the biggest mistakes was made by movie companies.
Films can create an entire world that can be supported by a
website to build interest, provide free online premiums, like
ring tones, and even offer a way to order tickets early.
Yet, Transformers III, Pirates of the
Caribbean On Stranger Tides, Rango,
Rio, Limitless and Mars Needs Moms
didn’t even provide a URL in their commercials. Because there
was no call to action, they’ll see no increase in their
databases. What a waste!
Were there any winners? Yes!
LookUp316.com. Would you
believe that a commercial first rejected by FOX Sports and
then, to everyone’s suprise, only played in a couple of small
media markets was the big winner? See the commercial here.
This 30-second commercial did 2
the commercial, the actors sent a strong and clear message
for the audience to use their smart phones.
- The message created curiosity to further force
the call to action (CTA) with the URL prominently
displayed—“LookUp316.com. A message of hope.” It clearly
dominated the screen.
Even though it played in just a few small markets, the
response was overwhelming, creating problems for the
Between excellent direct response strategies and perhaps
some pre-Super Bowl buzz due to the initial rejection of
broadcast, the video experienced a viral effect. When I last
looked, the YouTube posting of LookUp316 had almost 300,000
Now here’s another winner on the opposite end of
the taste scale….
GoDaddy.com: This is a
tacky approach and certainly an inappropriate ad for a
family-themed sporting event. Still, GoDaddy’s commercials
got a few things right. In “The Contract” it looks like
Danica Patrick and Jillian Michaels are totally naked. This
commercial created a sense of curiosity, which was
punctuated at the end with a visual call to action in big
letters and a narrator saying, “See more now at
GoDaddy.com.” And the URL was displayed throughout the
And what was the result using these direct response
According to GoDaddy.com Founder and CEO Bob Parsons, their
fourth-quarter commercial spiked Internet traffic higher than
any Super Bowl ad they had ever done before. What’s more,
calls, conversion and cash were off the charts! In fewer than
15 minutes after GoDaddy.com's first Super Bowl commercial
aired, their domain registrations shot up more than 466% over
the entire previous year.
My friend, direct response strategies work, and GoDaddy.com
is using them to their advantage.
A few honorable mentions
Jack in the Box: Their
commercial showed a campaign-specific URL, which was left up
long enough for the viewer to read
Ford: The Ford Motor
Company sponsored the pregame show and included a “join the
team” challenge commercial for the rally race of their Ford
Focus. This included viewer involvement and interactivity at
their website FocusRally.com
tie-in: Chevrolet partnered with FOX’s
Glee to create a commercial that not only promoted
the new Chevy Cruze, but encouraged viewers to stick around
for a special Sunday broadcast after the Super Bowl to see
what the talented kids at McKinley High School created for
their Cruze commercial. Glee normally airs on
Tuesdays and was a way to introduce fans to the Cruze
featuring the kids from Glee.
In the end, the only big winner of the night was the
Packers. Very little was done to get advertisers to use their
$3 million beyond “brand awareness.”
Again, another year of wasted advertising
What do you think? Do you have another commercial you
liked? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you want spots that are direct response oriented, where
people take action based on the product or service you’re
selling, just email me at email@example.com or call me at
310-212-5727. My team and I would be glad to
help you maximize your ad budget by showing you how your
advertising budget can work for you!
2. The power of trust in building
a profitable relationship
This is a valuable but often overlooked component to good
marketing. If the reader does not have trust in you, the
reader will not respond to you. Build assurances. Let the
reader know that you have been in his or her shoes. Create
copy that is essentially like you putting your arm over the
reader’s shoulder and saying, “I understand.”
The biggest hurdle to overcome in achieving
response and making the sale is skepticism. Trust breaks
through skepticism. And at every level, a prospect is
So, how do you break down the skeptics?
One way is a system I developed 25 years ago called
VIVA™. It stands for for “Valuable Information,
One major study showed the top reason prospects did not
respond to an offer was because it lacked benefits showing why
they should respond. Their skepticism was too great.
But what if you give away valuable information on
topics of interest to your prospects? Response dramatically
The VIVA system uses valuable information—such as trends,
forecasts, new findings, facts and secrets—that you can just
give to your prospects to help educate them and motivate them
to order. Informational marketing is especially effective in
promoting more complex products or services that need detailed
Here are some more strategies for
- Have a strong
your product or service can use a guarantee, use a strong
one. Money-back guarantees—especially double
money-back guarantees—will open the response floodgates.
Many marketers are afraid to offer a strong guarantee
because they think customers will take advantage of it. What
they don’t understand is that the greater response from
customers who would have normally never responded will more
than pay for any losses for backing the guarantee.
- Strong customer
Provide phone numbers, feedback email access and other ways
for customers to notify you when there is a problem. Make
sure you keep your promises and have your staff treat your
customers with respect when they do call. A problem well
handled at the customer service level can either kill a
relationship or strengthen it. So, make sure your team is
- Employ social
Engage your customers in a conversation on Facebook or
Twitter so they continue to shop at your e-commerce site (or
brick-and-mortar store) and recommend it to friends and
family. Use social media to make news announcements or
provide exclusive deals to Facebook friends. Keep the
- Testimonials. Trust
is built when a prospect or customer knows other people put
their trust in your product or service. Make sure your
website, mailings and other communications include glowing
statements about you. Include a picture and a name with the
testimonials to build even more credibility.
NOTE: Call me at
310-212-5727 and I’ll show you how you can
easily get testimonials from your satisfied
Need some help with building relationships based on trust
and credibility with your prospects and customers? Drop me an
email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at
310-212-5727. My team and I would like to
discuss how we can help you start building profitable
3. Make sure Direct Marketing
Update stays out of your spam filter
Don’t let your spam filter keep valuable and profit-making
information from reaching your Inbox. If you missed last
month’s articles, who knows how much that may have cost
you…and helped your competition! Just take a moment to add email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org to your list of safe
senders. Click here for details.
Do you send out an e-newsletter? Because if you do, you’ll
want to give these same instructions to your subscribers so
they’ll “whitelist” you!
In the meantime, you don’t want to miss links to
the articles from our last issue. Just click them to review
and catch up…
4. ALERT! USPS rates are going up
again in April
The U.S. Postal Monopoly announced plans to hike postage
rates again on several different types of mail in April. The
good news? The cost of sending a Mother's Day card in May will
stay the same.
Here’s the breakdown:
- For larger envelopes,
the cost of the first ounce remains at 44 cents, but the
cost of each additional ounce will increase from 17 cents to
- Rates on postcards will
increaseby 1 penny to 29 cents.
- Letters to Canada and
Mexico will increase to 80 cents from 75 cents and
79 cents respectively.
- Letters to other international
destinations will remain unchanged at 98
- Express Mail and Priority
Mail prices will not be affected.
- A variety of price increases for
other mailing services will go into effect,
including advertising mail, periodicals and packages.
Details can be found here.
That’s it for this week’s bonus issue. Stay tuned for your
next full issue of Direct Marketing
Yours for better profits and
Craig A. Huey
President, Creative Direct
Marketing Group, Inc.
21171 S. Western Ave., Suite
Torrance, CA 90501
Nobody knows direct