Barbara Harrison

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

The idea that advertising agencies are recommending campaigns based on humor—and marketers are going along with it—is an act of desperation. At the end of this issue is an illustration from an upcoming Campbell’s Soup commercial that urges consumers to “Make some holiday magic.” It depicts the branch of an evergreen tree reaching through an open window and grabbing some green bean casserole. The viewer will think, “My isn’t that cute and clever,” and remember the gag, but not the Campbell Soup. Be well-mannered, but don’t be a clown. People don’t buy from bad-mannered salesmen, and research has shown that they don’t buy from

By Hallie Mummert I remember the first time I met Ed McLean. We were at the launch of Denny Hatch's Direct Mail Package Days, a two-day seminar devoted to nothing but direct mail and the incomparable people who breathe life into their clients' products and services. Being only 23 at the time, I was greatly intimidated by these direct mail stars—Marty Davidson, Barbara Harrison, Ted Kikoler, Herschell Gordon Lewis and, of course, McLean—and yet still didn't fully realize that I was in the presence of greatness. I would love to say that McLean put me at ease right away, but that wasn't his

By Alicia Orr Suman Profile: Harvard Health Publishing Marketing newsletters by mail requires a solid dose of promotion. But for Harvard Health Publishing, the serious subject matter of its editorial means its sales tactics have to be tempered. The challenge for Harvard Health Publishing is to sell subscriptions to its five monthly titles in a newsletter market that's full of sometimes outrageous promotional promises: miracle cures, fast money, instant wealth. It's within this environment that the publisher must continually strive to get its sales message across clearly, effectively and with just

When Paul Michaels was writing copy for Greystone Press' continuity book programs several decades ago, he found that no element in the standard direct mail package provided him with a place to talk to prospects who had decided not to respond. So he invented a short letter that would allow him to address "no" people and their reluctance. This piece was originally called the publisher's letter, explains freelance copywriter Dick Armstrong, because it was signed by the publisher, while the main letter was signed by the editor. As marketers in other fields picked up on this extra letter's response-boosting powers, it became known

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