Message & Media: Make Your Best Offer
• Trial: Trial offers overcome the objection, "I don't believe it—this sounds too good to be true!" How can you use a free trial, free sample, free swatch, free demo or free preview to bump response?
• Guarantee: A strong guarantee is a must when prospecting. First-time tryers look for it as reassurance. A strong guarantee also differentiates you from your competition. Keep it simple and straightforward. Here's a great example from Lands' End: "Guaranteed. Period."
• Premium/Free Gift: A free gift or premium creates involvement and adds perceived value to your offer. Just make sure it's related to your end sale. Here's what I mean: Offering five free golf balls doesn't necessarily generate qualified leads for financial service buyers, but it does identify golfers. If you're trying to generate leads for insurance or financial planning, golf balls are not the right premium to offer. More Tips: Mention the dollar value of a free gift ($9.95 retail) to maximize its impact. Add intrigue by offering a mystery or surprise free gift.
• Deadline: Deadlines create urgency. They motivate procrastinators and fence-sitters. Call attention to a deadline by giving it a name and providing an incentive, e.g., "Early Bird Deadline—Save additional 20%." Try a "Fast 50" offer that gives the first 50 to respond a special incentive.
• Free Information: While this is probably the No. 1 B-to-B lead generation offer, offering free information can be dangerous. And boring. Here's why: Does anyone really need more information? Information lacks value; it's too general. What your customers really want are tips, solutions and ideas to help solve their problems or make informed buying decisions. Consider repackaging your free information offer with a new name that promises a benefit. For more ideas, read my column entitled The Kit Factor.
• Yes/No: Marketers who use a Yes/No option often find that when they give prospects the chance to respond, "No, I'm not interested at this time, but please send me updates," they increase both overall response and "Yes" responses. And once a rental name responds yes or no by mail, email or phone, you own the name and don't have to rent it again.