Joint Ventures and Strategic Alliances:
Direct mail companies have profited from JV’s and SA’s for years. One side of the mailing piece is for one business and the other side is for another non-competing business.
Val Pak and other coupon companies have built fortunes around piggybacking off of other business mailing lists or client lists. This is not a new idea, as it has been done for decades.
The newest feature revolves around how to do it and what you are advertising along with the new medium, the internet.
Stop mailing general information ads
Each ad you mail needs to have a “Call to Action”. You need to motivate the reader to take action on the ad. Pick up the phone, complete a return form, visit a web site or provide an email or some contact information.
The best way to do that is by offering them something of great value for FREE. A book, a report, a video or a sample of the product or service you offer.
Can’t think of a FREE product, then make one. The simplest form is a e-book or report is to list your top 3 to 10 questions and answers for problems associated with your product or service. Write it out on your computer word processor. You have room to explain it as much as you want.
Format this into a simple report and give it a catchy title. FREE Report, the TOP 5 reason to…. What to do before you buy your next ….. Find something that make them want to give you their name and contact information.
Don’t just offer the same discount everyone else is doing
Be different, be outrageous. Stand out from your competitors and give them something of real value BEFORE you ask them to be your new customer or client. Prove your worth before you ask them to buy or use a coupon.
This is critical when doing a JV or SA. By providing real value before asking them to buy your product or service you do two things:
- You show you are not just another business trying to sell them another product or service.
- Your JV or SA partner appreciates you are not selling them first, you are offering them a value in return for looking at your business and doing it for FREE.
It is important that you help your new JV or SA partner do the same with your clients
You may have to help your new partner make their own version of the Top 10 questions and free report as you don’t want them selling a basics service that can be bought anywhere.
You want your partners to take the time to build value with your clients as you are doing with their clients.
Take the time upfront to help each other build a great Lead Magnets or FREE products. Use this site or your current level of business expertise to help them create a FREE offer they can use for this mailing.
By doing this with your new partner you will demonstrate a real value that they will immediately appreciate and value. You build your value proposition into the initial meeting and your chances of a successful partnership are almost guaranteed.
Just think if someone approached you with this idea and was willing to help you build a new product they you can deliver to your clients. What would you think of them? Would you be interested in doing business with them?
How can you use Direct Mail to work for your new venture?
This is the easy part. Direct mail is still a great way to advertise. It allows you the ability to narrow down who will see your message or you can mail to a general list and hope for the best.
With JV’s and SA’s your audience is already primed for your message. The clients you are mailing to are proven purchasers and have a pre-built level of trust with your new partner.
You only need to have your partner do up a simple letter that can be included in the mailing or as a testimonial on a postcard mailing.
Your client sees this letter or testimonial and immediately lowers their guard and becomes warm to your message. You now have time to introduce them to your business.
Make sure your sales message is strong
These folks still don’t know you from Adam so you still need to use a strong headline that has been tested and proven to be a winner.
You need to offer a FREE product or service that has real value. Not a discount coupon, you want them to think “I really need to have this”. This free product will introduce you to this new prospect and will give you a chance to make a future sale.
These prospects are warm to your presentation and have a certain level of trust with your new partner. This works to your advantage.
They provide you with their contact information when requesting your free information product. You now have a new prospect and possible customer.
Never screw one of your JV or SA clients
This is a golden rule. Never disappoint one of these clients. Always make they are satisfied that they have dealt with you. You never want to make them angry or felt ripped off.
If you make a mistake, own up to it fast and fix it even if it costs you money to do so. This will prove to your new partner that you can be trusted not to cheat or scam their clients. This will build a foundation of trust with your new partner and with their clients and customers.
You are not a “fly by night” company and you will honor all promises and guarantees. This is critical in building your relationship.
It is important that your new partner knows this is what you will do for him and that you expect the same treatment of your clients when he markets to them.
Always make good on your promises
I really don’t have to say this but your integrity and honor are at stake here. You need to do the best you can to ensure that your new partner and their clients are well taken care of. Enough said.
What can you send them?
Your direct mail piece can be as simple as a letter or postcard or can be a full-fledged mailing piece with a letter, brochure, order form and a reply envelope.
It depends on what you are selling. Design your direct mail piece around what you are trying to sell. If it is easy to understand make it easy to get the Free report or eBook.
Offer multiple ordering options, phone in order, mail in orders and website or fax ordering. Remember not everyone like to use the Internet. There are millions of people that simply do not understand how the internet works. They are only just beginning to trust email and marketers are constantly abusing this service.
Allowing people options on how they can access your Free product is a great tactic when sending your first mailing piece.
Design a great follow-up program well before you meet your new partner
This can be the same follow-up program you use now to your free offer. You can have a series of mail outs or emails or website links but make sure they are tested and work well.
Show your new partner your complete system to ensure they are confident that you can provide their clients with exceptional service.
Your follow-up program should provide even more Free content that has a good value to it and then should have a simple way for them to become your client. Using your pre-built system will save you money and will demonstrate to your new partner that you are very serious with your offer.
Demonstrate each step to your new partner to prove how much effort you have taken in this program before ever contacting them with your offer. This goes a long way in making this partnership work.