Testing, Testing, Testing

You want to always test all of your marketing methods.

In the case of newspaper ads, try a smaller ad. When it works, move it up to a bigger ad. If they work, and only if they work, then you get bigger. You can keep getting bigger and bigger if it works.

A rule of thumb in display ads, for instance, is that if an ad works, the bigger size will work even better.

There’s been a lot of small businesses that lose money and sometimes their business because they don’t follow this rule of testing. They throw money at advertising reps for advertising that doesn’t work. The next thing they know, they’re out of money and they have no customers.

No matter how great you think your idea is, you need to test it small. Let your response tell you if it’s going to work or not.

One guy went out and bought thousands of names from a mailing list broker. He mailed all of the 5,000 names and got a great response. Unbelievable. But he made a big mistake. He decided to mail the rest of the list (125,000) and spent $12,000 to buy the list. Spent $40,000 on postage (on a $.32 stamp). Guess what his sales were? A little over $2,000.

When you buy a mailing list from a broker, they usually give you the best part of the list and the most responsive buyers. Then, when you buy the whole list, they give you everybody. This guy lost over $55,000.

It’s a common mistake made by many people. One gentleman found out a large segment of his list resided inside a prison.

You have to test, test, test. Test small and then get bigger slowly.

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