An unfortunate number of businesses lose potential clients or customers because they do not perform the necessary follow-up once a lead has been generated.
This is a terrible loss. The time and expense of lead generation is simply wasted effort without proper follow-through.
The loss of just one client can be significant down the road. Multiply that by dozens or even hundreds of potential clients and you’re losing out on tremendous amounts of income.
The good news is, this kind of waste can be avoided with a very important direct marketing tool:  The conversion series.
Conversion series work.
And they work independent of any telesales. One client attracted over $1 billion in sales from a conversion series created for him.
Conversion Series Components
A conversion series is a string of email, direct mail, Facebook and banner ad retargeting [see video brief on retargeting here].
Messages sent out at critical stages enable you to stay in touch with your prospect. For example, after contact is made, you might send a follow-up kit.  After that, you send out an email message confirming you sent a package by mail. In it, you could have a link to a microsite or landing page to further draw in your prospect.
And you take your leads, email, and identify their Facebook page.
Staying in Touch
The goal of the conversion series is to stay in touch with your prospects and make them clients or buyers. If you’re out of sight, you’re out of mind…and out of luck.
In a conversion series, you’re reminding them who you are and how you can make their life better—all the while using the opportunities to stress your credibility, your knowledge and your attention to customer service.
Here is an example of a conversion series I created for a recent client:
 
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As you can see, an automatic series of steps and correspondence has been set up based on where your prospect comes into the series.
For example, once you’ve sent the prospect a follow-up kit, the next contact is an email a week later and a direct mail piece one month later. This is followed by email piece one week after that, and so on.
At the same time, the prospect can see Facebook ads on their newsfeed and banner ads following them across the Internet.
It’s easy to track, and highly efficient.
9 steps to successful conversion
A conversion series can be one of the most effective ways to convert leads into clients or buyers. Let’s take a look at the 9 steps to any successful conversion series:

  1. Use direct response copy

Your copy must follow all the rules of great direct response copywriting. This means you-oriented copy (“10 reasons you cannot afford to miss this opportunity”), copy that touts benefits instead of features (“…results that will help you sleep at night”), as well as using long, conversational copy to draw in your prospect. Don’t be afraid of writing long copy…only be afraid of writing boring copy.

  1. Establish your theme

Each email and postal letter must have a clear and distinct theme. You want a focused central point, not randomness.  Each piece should have a theme that addresses and counters issues that could hinder your prospect to respond.
For example, the thrust of one letter might be the high value of your product or service. Another letter might be about your years of high customer service. Still another might address your commitment to quality.

  1. Give your series personality

The letters and emails in your series must come from a personality.  If your correspondence comes from a nameless, faceless organization, the piece will be quickly tossed or deleted.
If the piece comes directly from an individual in your organization—a CEO or a committed product development executive— with a photograph and a signature, you’ll maximize your credibility, and your potential client or buyer will be able to relate to you much more. Put a face on your conversion series. It makes a difference.

  1. Get your prospect to act now

The point of the conversion series is to always move your prospects to act. The moment they hold your sales piece has to be the moment that drives them to act. For this reason, there must be a strong call to action.
In your copy, stress the need for them to contact you immediately. Use a premium or an offer deadline to get them to pick up the phone or visit your website. Once they put down your sales piece or click to the next email, your window of opportunity is gone.

  1. Your offer must be on the table

Along with step 4, if you want your prospect to act now, there should be an offer. When you’re devising your offer, consider the theme of the piece. They should dovetail.
Your offer could include one premium through the whole series, or it could utilize multiple premiums based on prospect interest.

  1. Personalization is key

In any business, attention to service is a key selling point. For this reason, you should always personalize your postal and email letters. No one wants to read “Dear Friend” when their hard earned money is at stake.
In addition to your personalized letter, you should also have a preprinted insert such as a lift note to further maximize your personalization.

  1. Don’t mix telesales and your conversion series

Your conversion series should work independently of any telesales you may use.
There are a variety of reasons why telemarketing and your conversion series shouldn’t mix. Sometimes you’re not able to get a hold of the prospect. Or the telemarketer is not efficient.
Telemarketing, in and of itself, falls short. It’s one of the reasons the conversion series is necessary.

  1. Tie your conversion series to a direct response or landing page

Sometimes prospects will want more information than you can provide in a single email or postal letter. For this reason, you should always have a direct marketing landing page specifically geared toward the conversion series.
On the site, you can use direct response copy to further draw your prospect in, or answer any additional questions they might have. You can also use an email or a postal letter to “tease” your prospect into visiting your website.
And remember to use a direct response or landing page, not a corporate website. You want your site to be a focused extension of your theme, not a confusing, non-marketing corporate site.
Do you have questions or want any tips about copy and direct marketing? Call me at (310) 212-5727 or email me at craig@cdmginc.com

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