Transcript of Frankel's Free Clinic August 9, 1999

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:00 AM): Grrrrrrrrrreetings.

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:00 AM): Entered the room. (8/9/99 9:00 AM): Hi, Rob! Good Morning!

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:00 AM): ahhhh .. finally got tired of it, eh? *grin*

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:00 AM): Good morning Rob and Clayton!

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Good morning Rob, All! (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Yes and no. A good paying job is always good, but one that you dread is never good. (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Hi, Clayton!

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Entered the room.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Entered the room.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:01 AM): I notice that you were discussing onelist. Aren't you concerned about their harvesting your subscriber's addresses?

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:01 AM): Entered the room.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:02 AM): Good Morning/evening everyone!

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:02 AM): I don't use them for my lists .. I use egroups.. what's the scoop with onelist?

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:02 AM): Hi Everybody!

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:03 AM): I use onelist for a couple of lists... but they are more casual than they are for business (one is for a local band, and the other is a group of friends staying in touch.) (8/9/99 9:03 AM): I've never heard of any problems. Are there?

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:03 AM): The reason I ask is because every so often, people think they're getting spammed from the FrankelBiz list...and our server is locked and secure from public inspection.

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:04 AM): Just curious - any of you that have a list, do you have one of your own addresses subscribed to keep an eye on what they send out ? (8/9/99 9:04 AM): I think a lot of people are Spam-paranoid, thinking that the "one" place they subscribe to is selling them off.

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:05 AM): Absolutely I have my own address on the Onelist list, and I haven't received anything other than my own messages.

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:05 AM): most definitely. I subscribe to client lists to help them monitor as well

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:05 AM): Well.. I was being spammed from one of the geocities sponsors (8/9/99 9:05 AM): Spam is ubiquitous as junk mail... and that's a GREAT segue for a question I have this morning....!

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:06 AM): ewwww, geocities! Sorry if you are a member, but I really feel like that is the sign of an amateur or a bottom-feeder. Lots of people out there feel the same way. Not the best message to send if you want visitors.

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:07 AM): laffin .. my biz is on my own domain, Andy! I have a hobby page called Cherokee Princess at geocities

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:07 AM): The question???? (8/9/99 9:08 AM): I'm creating a direct mail piece for a "save the date" postcard. We're limited to 2 color printing, but I know about shading & halftoning, so I think I can still make it look interesting. (8/9/99 9:08 AM): They have no slogan or logo, and I came up with "save energy, save money, save the planet, save the date" (for ecologically sensible homes) (8/9/99 9:09 AM): they're doing a tour of local"eco-homes" and charging $10 per person

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:09 AM): And the question would be.......

kieran (8/9/99 9:09 AM): Entered the room. (8/9/99 9:10 AM): (fingers burning from all the typing) What are a couple of BIG points I should keep in mind when making this, so I'm not creating garbage? (8/9/99 9:10 AM): which would be contrary to the ecological principles!)

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:12 AM): Why not have them bring the card with them so that they can recycle it when they get there?

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:12 AM): Entered the room.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:13 AM): Entered the room. (8/9/99 9:13 AM): it's a mail-in survey... one idea was to have them mail in the whole 4-panel card, not just the postcard part (8/9/99 9:13 AM): postcard = 2 panels, this is a fold-over

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:15 AM): Entered the room.

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:15 AM): Hi all.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:15 AM): JoAnna, if the remainder has useful information on it, it won't get thrown away. Or you should include instructions on how to make the non-mailer "self-destruct" in a bio-friendly way.

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:15 AM): Hi Dave (8/9/99 9:16 AM): How about it not getting "ignored" if it were junk mail. Any ideas?

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:17 AM): JoAnna, even though the mailer is a survey, is the goal to get more people to come to the eco-tours?

Kieran (8/9/99 9:18 AM): JoAnna what would make you think twice before chucking it away?

Andy TeBockhorst ( (8/9/99 9:19 AM): Put yourself in the readers' shoes... what would make you want to open it? Make sure you have a clear picture in your mind of the target market. (8/9/99 9:19 AM): YES! It's a two-birds-one-stone thing. Part 1=save the date, Part 2=get on mailing list. (8/9/99 9:21 AM): Kieran/Andy, I LOVE going to these things...I'm exactly the target market...I guess the proof's in the mailing list, since a targeted audience is going to make or break the results. and that's beyond me.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:21 AM): I can tell you that the post office does what it can to limit creativity...Like charging less for square shaped pieces.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:21 AM): Direct mail hints: Don't give away the whole message on the outside. Pique their curiosity.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:22 AM): Also, if it's a time-sensitive issue, make sure they can see that first. A "missed opportunity" is very compelling.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:23 AM): Don't be afraid to have fun. The more outrageous you are, the better it works. Mail is junky and cluttered. You've got to break out of that boredom. (8/9/99 9:24 AM): Yeah, Rob, all my "good" ideas are expensive! (silver foil to imitate solar panels on a house-shaped cutout card!)

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:24 AM): Finally, if you don't have color, use large, heavy type and simple illustrations. Go for contrast. (8/9/99 9:25 AM): Does anyone like my cover slogan? " the planet, save the date"?

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:25 AM): It's good. But it's blind.

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:25 AM): The company I worked for had their most successful ad a B/W ad

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:26 AM): it doesn't tell me what you are referring to right off the bat (8/9/99 9:26 AM): Those are GREAT points to keep in mind! Esp how to deal with lack of colors.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:26 AM): I go for the more in your face stuff, like "Open this now or the planet is doomed." (8/9/99 9:28 AM): talk about fire and brimstone!

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:29 AM): the TV evangelists have been getting lots of interest with that for years, JoAnna *grin*

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:29 AM): My favorite magazine cover was a National Lampoon issue from the 1970's, featuring a St. Bernard with a gun at its head.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:29 AM): The headline was "Buy this magazine or we'll shoot this dog." (8/9/99 9:29 AM): Entered the room.

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:30 AM): egads, Rob!!

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:30 AM): The point is -- and I give this lecture to lots of clients -- that people are weary of bland, general language. You must articulate to get attention.

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:31 AM): "open this before it Bio-degrades"

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:31 AM): I use the word "articulate" a lot. When you talk in clear, meaningful language, people sit up and take notice.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:31 AM): Entered the room.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:32 AM): Think about popular taglines and headlines you see from big advertisers. Most say nothing at all.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:32 AM): How about a mission impossible theme?

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:32 AM): sort of like the old Mission Impossible's "this message will self-destruct in 5 seconds" ?

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:32 AM): Three quick ideas. use an oversized postcard, you can go to nearly 9 inches by 12 inches and still have a postcard mailing cost. if you are using a fold put part of the headline on the front, then the rest inside, or create an oddly shaped card placed in a glama envelope so it is still visible

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:32 AM): "Just do it" "rising" are taglines from huge companies that mean nothing to you and me.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:32 AM): Terri, great minds think alike!

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:33 AM): What were the 70's like?

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:33 AM): Actually, Dan, you can only go to 4" x 6" and be mailed as a postcard. Any larger puts you into first class, unless you're doing bulk rate third.

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:33 AM): *grin* (8/9/99 9:33 AM): thanks for clarifying that, Rob. That's what I thought. it'

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:34 AM): The '70's were fabulous. The only thing shorter than the skirts were our short-term memories.

Kieran (8/9/99 9:34 AM): gotta go guy's, enlightening as ever (8/9/99 9:34 AM): it's going to be a 33¢ stamp if it' a fold-over anyway... so I'm probably going to go with that idea

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:34 AM): More Guinness for me!

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:35 AM): Let me check out the size quote then. I have a client who just sent one out not too long ago and it was at a postcard rate.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:35 AM): The overall point is that direct mail has to be "right between the eyes" stuff to work. Especially if it's downsized.

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:36 AM): least that's what they told me.....

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:36 AM): Also keep in mind that successful direct mail relies on REPEATED mailings, not just a one-shot deal. (8/9/99 9:36 AM): Thanks for all the tips, everyone! Maybe when I get a prototype done, I'll upload it to my website for target practice... Ready Aim FIRE!

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:38 AM): Oh good...a public execution.....

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:39 AM): sounds like a good theme, Rob - showing public execution of the planet *grin*

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:39 AM): I have some questions about associate/affiliate programs. I am considering setting one up. Any good sites out there yall know off the top of your heads?

John Charlesworth ( (8/9/99 9:39 AM): Entered the room.

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:40 AM): Rob, What are your thoughts on them good/bad indiff? (8/9/99 9:40 AM): CUTE, Terri!

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:40 AM): I haven't employed any just yet. Have you shopped any yet?

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:41 AM): But I can tell you that Mark Welch is something of a "self-appointed" expert on them. In fact his site reviews them. (8/9/99 9:41 AM): I am familiar with FreeRide and MyPoints. Both are interesting enough that I keep going back...

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:42 AM): I don't say that derogatorily, either. Mark's a Bay Area lawyer who has dedicated lot of time to reviewing affiliate organizations....

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:42 AM): "open this before it Bio-degrades"

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:43 AM): Entered the room.

Dan Geist( (8/9/99 9:43 AM): least that's what they told me.....

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:43 AM): Let me see if I can find his site....

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:43 AM): Entered the room.

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:44 AM): Been to his site and yes I have shopped them but

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:45 AM): I guess my confusion is How to start my own for my business

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:45 AM): I'm pretty sure it's It's a good starting point.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:46 AM): Clayton, let me recommend you DON'T start by using an affiliate program. Start out offering referrals and see how that goes. That's what I still do for FrankelBiz.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:46 AM): Until you know that your concept has market acceptance, you could be wasting your time.

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:46 AM): Clayton, I was just reading some things on the pros and cons of running your own affiliate program or having someone like MyPoints administer it for you

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:47 AM): The bigger question is "what are you offering your affiliates?' What kind of program? And is there a market for it?

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:48 AM): I do have Market acceptance What I don't have is a clear cut way to reach my very narrow target market

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:48 AM): And I think they recommended the same as Rob - try out having others to put a link up for you and give them maybe 50% of every sale to see how that goes over

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:48 AM): I would be offering a percentage of each sale

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:48 AM): What makes you think an affiliate program will make that easier? You'd still have to find affiliates in that narrow market.

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:49 AM): I have an avenue to find the affiliates but they are very,very cliquish

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:50 AM): Most affiliate "programs" are little more than scripts that track activity. Don't get lulled into thinking they're turnkey sales programs.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:50 AM): If it's a clique, then I would focus my attention on breaking into the clique. Why re-invent the wheel, especially if you know where the business already is?

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:50 AM): The thinking was that the novelty of signing up may break the clique

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:51 AM): (TEN MINUTE WARNING)

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:51 AM): there are a lot of "suites" around Phoenix that are basically a storefront for small businesses that don't want an office - those tenants might be a target market for you

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:51 AM): No way, Clayton. Starting your own National Football League is a lot harder than buying in as an expansion team.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:52 AM): There must be something about the clique that you find repulsive....

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:53 AM): ...but if you can get around that, that's all the novelty you need. They always have a blind side.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:53 AM): Low prices alone won't do it. You must find out what it is that keeps the clique together. Aim directly at that and fire your best shot.

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:54 AM): ok

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:55 AM): Thanks for the help!

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:55 AM): It's a problem that's universal. We all have clients that we want to get, but feel we can't break through to. It's planning, timing and luck. But careful observation is what ties it all together.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:56 AM): Finally focus less on what you have and more on what they need. That's what has worked best for me.

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:57 AM): Anyone else before we wrap it up? (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Thanks for all the ideas and suggestions, Rob, and Everyone! I love to jump-start my week this way!

Terri ( (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Lots of great ideas today, Rob! Thanks for being here every week! See you all next week!

RobFrankel (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Okie doke, let's knock off early today....See you all online!

John Charlesworth ( (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Clayton, are people who are looking for projector rentals in Texas going to the web to find them? Or do you instead need to use some offline PR to stir the demand?

Dave ( (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Not at 9:57 (8/9/99 9:58 AM): Bye, everyone!

Clayton Turnbow( (8/9/99 9:59 AM): the seem to be going to the Web more and more

John Charlesworth ( (8/9/99 9:59 AM): Because an affiliate program will only help you if they're going to the web to find these things in the first place.

Dave ( (8/9/99 10:00 AM): Thanks, Rob. I'm glad I remembered this morning.

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