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“Cheap Tactics” to test your marketing

I found a new technique based on an old marketing trick I read about a few years back in Response magazine.

The magazine article suggested testing a few different marketing messages with radio ads. Each ad should have a toll-free number, a website, or some other way that people could resonse. The response for each ad needs to be different, so you can compare the response from each of your radio spots.

Once you’ve found a clear winner, you can use it to unroll a more comprehensive (and expensive) marketing campaign.

The take-away from all of this is to test your copy and your marketing ideas with cheap media. This keeps your expenses down. Then you can raise the stakes once you have marketing copy that has already been proven.

But even a simple radio ad will cost your company thousands of dollars. So here’s an even easier way to test your copy, your offer, and possibly generate some leads in the process.

Start with a sales letter. This is the canon of all marketing, and I’ve mentioned it before. If you don’t have the resources to print and mail a sales letter, you can adapt the copy into a web page and draw traffic through AdWords, classified ads, cold calling, or many other tactics.

The reason I start with this model is because it’s the most inexpensive way to present and test a “hook” that will get the attention of your best prospects, address the pain that they’re feeling, provide a solution and break down your offering into a solution to their problem.

When you’ve tested a few different sales letters, you’ll have a clear picture of the best offer, the best hook, the most profitable markets for a project and a viable strategy for bringing it all together.

Testing a sales letter is the best way to tweak and test your message. Copy is the foundation of every effort. So once you’ve got it right, then you can re-apply it–with amplified results.

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