Ivan Levison —
Direct Mail, E-mail and Advertising Copywriting

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Action Ideas For Better Direct Mail,
E-mail, Web Sites & Advertising

Published by
Ivan Levison, Direct Response Copywriting

Mid-November, 2008
Volume: 23 Number: 11.5

How to make money in a tough economy

When times are great, you’re too BUSY to spend time on marketing.

When times are tough, you’re too DEPRESSED to spend time on marketing.

That’s why I always tell my clients that a consistent marketing effort, month-in, month-out,
is so vitally important. An ongoing n marketing program keeps your business moving ahead
through good and bad times.

But these aren’t merely “bad” times. They are, in Dickens words, “the worst of times.”
Which is why it’s so important to stop
hunkering down and get out there in front of prospects with a strong marketing effort.

Here are five thoughts on how you can use direct response marketing to make money
whether the sun is shining or not.

*** 1. Create innovative offers that appeal to cash-strapped prospects.

Any offer that can help your prospective clients save money these days, is a guaranteed winner.

Can you bundle several products or services together and offer them at a reduced price? Do it!

Can you come up with a killer limited-time offer? Do it!

Any time that you spend thinking about creating a fresh and compelling offer is time well spent.
As Bob Stone, the dean of the direct response business put it, "The propositions you make to
customers can mean the difference between success or failure.

Depending on the offer, differences in response of 25, 50, 100 percent and more are commonplace."

*** 2. Think about using postal mail in your communications mix.

Yes. Email is cheaper than postal mail but that doesn’t mean email always pays off at the
back end. Here are three reasons to consider using direct mail as part of your marketing program:

PRO: Direct mail gives you the space you need to tell your whole story. If you write a
compelling letter, readers will stay with you. They will NOT stick with you in an e-mail.

PRO: In direct mail, you can use emotion. In your letter or flyer you can inspire, frighten, cajole,
convince, make cogent arguments, and motivate. Readers just don't want that in an e-mail. They
want you to tell them the facts and get out. Which, for a copywriter like me, can
be limiting.

PRO: In direct mail you can include different pieces that you can hold in your hand. I'm talking
about a colorful flyer, a testimonial sheet filled with raves, objective product reviews, you name it.
You never know what's going to capture a reader's interest or attention.

With an email you get pixels on the screen and nothing more.

*** 3. Try using “dimensional offers” that cut through the clutter.

In the jargon of direct mail copywriters, a dimensional mailing is a package that actually has
something stuffed inside it (i.e. it has three dimensions). Often, by adding an attention-getter,
you can be sure your package will get opened.

EXAMPLE: A while ago, I wrote a "get-an-appointment" letter for a graphic designer.
The letter was sent to tech companies in Sunnyvale (in the heart of Silicon Valley) where the
designer had his home studio. A small rock was stuffed into the envelope along with the letter.
At the top of the letter, I put the headline:

"Profit-building art direction and design are just a stone's throw away."

A bit corny? Guilty as charged. Effective? Extraordinarily. The letters got opened and the designer
received literally dozens of appointments. If you'd like to see the complete letter, which has a nice,
breezy tone, you’ll find it at:


Check it out!

*** 4. Now is the perfect time to build market share.

Right now, many of your competitors are cutting budgets and climbing into their bomb shelters.
Which means if YOU can find the money to keep marketing, or even INCREASE your marketing budget,
you may be able to take business from your competitors.

And keep it.

They say that when the stock market crashes and “blood is in the streets,” that is the time to buy.
Well, when your competitors are asleep at the switch, that’s the perfect time to start marketing!

*** 5. Don’t “do it yourself.”

When it comes to copywriters, you’ll find that it pays to work with the best. Sure, it will cost you
less to write your materials yourself or work with a junior freelancer, but you’ll wind up losing in
the end. And maybe BIG time.

The simple fact is, top professionals can pay for themselves many times over and MAKE
you money, not COST you money.

Ahhh. And what a perfect lead-in to a final pitch for my copywriting services. (Can you blame me?)
The truth is, when you have me writing your lead-generation letters, emails, Web pages, collateral, etc.,
I can pay for my modest fees many times over . . .

and I can prove it! Take a look at:


and check out the kind of results I get for my clients, day-in, day-out.

Believe me, with the economy in the tank and your marketing budget tighter than ever, you never
needed me more.

Call me right now at (415) 461-0672 and let’s go to work!

How To Get In Touch

Ivan Levison
Direct Response Copywriting
14 Los Cerros Drive
Greenbrae, CA 94904

Phone: (415) 461-0672
Fax: (415) 461-7738
E-mail: ivan@levison.com
Web Site: http://www.levison.com

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Copyright 2008, by Ivan Levison, All Rights Reserved.

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Ivan Levison. Direct Mail, Email & Advertising Copywriting
14 Los Cerros Drive, Greenbrae, CA 94904
Phone (415) 461-0672      Fax: (415) 461-7738
E-mail: ivan@levison.com

© 2013, Ivan Levison & Associates. All rights reserved.

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