The Secret Strategy Of Classified Ads That Pull In Millions Upon Millions of Dollars-And It's So Easy to Do!

By Ken Varga

I was asked to touch on two subjects this week that I feel all of you reading this are interested in. Whether your online or off line, these two ideas can create more new customers for you.

The first has to do with Classified ads but with a different twist.

We're all familiar with standard Classified Ads, but I'm going to give you a secret strategy of Classified Ads that pull in million upon millions of dollars. This strategy consists of three components: Classified ads, electronic mailboxes and C.O.D. orders.

1. Classified Ads - Believe it or not, classified ads are pound for pound, penny for penny and dollar for dollar, the best advertising by you that you can make. They not only bring in orders, but I have found that they are the best and cheapest way to test.

If you've read my book, and you should have, I mention over and over again to test, test, and test. With classifieds, you can test virtually anything from a Headline to a product.

2. Electronic Mailboxes - Most of the newspapers will not allow you to ask for money from Classifieds. But that's OK. That's where the electronic mailbox comes in. Your ad simply refers the prospect to your electronic mailbox.

For example:

Free Recorded Message Reveals How To Eliminate Computer Viruses. Call xxx-xxxx

At the end of the recording they hear a message and all you have to do is to ask for the order. The mailbox will record their name and address, plus the other important information you need to gather. Like credit card information.

Or, you can do a two step approach. You can now mail them a marketing letter, like a Direct Mail piece, to get them to order your product. How about putting together a Report that reveals something, then use it as a sale pitch to get them to complete the order form enclosed?

But before you make that recording, pay attention to the next third part of this strategy.

3. C.O.D. Orders - These people don't know you from Adam. But by accepting COD orders means you have every intention of sending the goods. The buyer doesn't have to send any money or give his credit card number until he has the goods in hand.

You're probably saying right now..."Has Ken gone off his rocker? People normally reject COD's."

You're right, but if you send a card or letter telling them to watch for it and how much money they need to have ready and how they are going to benefit with something extra that they didn't order, but you've included in the package at no additional cost, you'll see your COD's drop to zero. Try this strategy if you have a product you can COD.

Now onto the next idea: How can you turn refunds and complaints into sales?

You've all heard the statement," The customer is always right."

It might sound like a clichÃ, but in sales and marketing it is vital that you adapt this attitude. Certainly some customers are rude jerks. But there are many more who, while upset with you right now for one reason or another, might be great customers in the future.

Here are some ideas:

1. When a customer comes to you with a return or a complaint, service them promptly and satisfactorily. Make it easy on them. Even if that particular customer isn't worth it, your reputation will quickly spread (look how Nordstrom's are quickly leaving the competition in the dust).

If your customer is angry, hear them out. Don't interrupt. Don't argue. Don't make excuses. Just listen. And the let them know you understand (even if you don't). Admit the mistake was your. Humbling perhaps, but profitable in the long run.

In short, make it your goal to develop a solid reputation for service. Bend over backwards to please your customers.

2. Ask if there is any way you can make up for the error or problem. Offer them a free gift for their inconvenience. Ask them to give you a second chance with a special discount.

Here's an example: A grocery store refused to cash a check for a regular customer, because they couldn't locate her check cashiing privileges in their store files. When the women's husband heard about it he wrote a letter to the management questioning this bad treatment and vowing to frequent the competition in the future.

Rather than making excuses or debating the customer, the store manager presented the man and his wife with two free steaks, a plant, and special check cashing privileges. The small expense was more than paid for by future shopping trips to this store from these now satisfied customers.

If you do the same, you can turn every complaint into a success story. Sure some complaints are garbage. But it's your reputation that's important. Word does get around. And if you treat your customers right when their unhappy, they will probably come back and give you another chance, plus spread the word about how great you are, and this is what is the most important.

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