a blog by Chris Barrow

Direct marketing

I was taken to task on my previous post about mailers, adverts, gimmicks being a waste of time.

Offended dentists and marketing consultants complaining that their mailer worked – so what the hell do I know?

Everything works. Exploding cigars work. There is simply a conversion rate…

  1. 1 in 3 people you ask for referrals will refer

  2. 1 in 6 people who visit your web site will call for an appointment

  3. 1 in 20 people who see your signage will drop in

  4. 1 in 100 people who see your stand at a wedding show will ask for details

  5. 1 in 1000 people who hear your radio advert will visit your website

  6. 1 in 1500 people who see a post on Facebook will ask for more information

  7. 1 in 4000 people who get your direct mailer will respond (and in direct marketing 0.25% is a good response rate – that’s 3999 mailers in the recycling and 1 on a desk)

Everything works to some degree or other. What’s important is to measure the ROI.


What did you pay and what did you get?

and then to PRIORITISE your marketing activity.

In our urban village of Hale, Cheshire (very affluent – footballers, corporate finance, big business) we have a bakery – Hills (see photo above).

This year they celebrate their 100th anniversary and in the shop window are photos of the founders, in World War 1 military uniform – and a history of the family.

They make the best pain aux chocolat I have ever tasted – and people queue to buy them – even though Sainsbury’s across the road, Tesco next door and the busiest Costa in Europe a few yards away, sell the same.

Do they taste THAT MUCH different?

Probably not.

Sainsbury, Tesco and Costa are really wholesalers of their products.