The Marketing Guy.
By: Craig Valine
For July 1998


Don’t you hate cold calling? I know I do. Making phone calls or just "popping by" and having them say, "we’re not interested" is just a "pain in the you know where!" But, getting new customers doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt. Most salespeople use tradition cold-calling techniques to get customers and, in the process learn to hate it very quickly and develop that ever-so-popular "call reluctance."

It’s tough, I know! I’ve been in sales for a long time. There have been times I’ve walked right by a possible prospect. It’s easier that way, isn’t it? But, if all salespeople did that where would the profession be? I mean, people need what we’re selling, right? Well, there is an easier way to acquire new customers and it’s not a "pain in the you know where." It’s called lead-generation (or two-step) advertising and it does all the things you need to acquire a qualified prospect.

Lead generation advertising is most common in mail order where people see an ad for something they want, call in or write for a free informational report, give their name, phone number and address (all the things you need!), and then you send them the report giving them useful information, PLUS selling them on your services

A typical lead generation ad for a burglar alarm company might go like this:

"Find Out Seven Ways You Can Prevent Burglary And Keep Your Home As Tight As A Bank Vault. For a free educational brochure, please call or write…"

The key is to place the ad in a publication where your target clientele is most likely to see it. When you write the ad, you should use 15pt type and place it in the display section.

Your "educational brochure" (or Free Report) should be informational, yet should attempt to sell the prospect in the process. However, if you don’t offer information they can use, they won’t buy from you at all. They key is to inform them like you would a friend. The premise should be: "here are some free tips you can use right now to make your home secure, and if you would like to really be safe, I can help you do that too!"

Ok, to sum up: First, create a 2 to 8 page "educational brochure" on something people can benefit from related to your type of work. Second, write an advertisement similar to the one above. Start out with "Find out…" and be sure to use the words "educational brochure." Third, place your ad in a publication where your targeted clientele will most likely see it (just for the record, the daily publications may not be the best place because after they are read they are usually tossed). And fourth, capture every name, address and phone number when people call in or write and stay in touch with them. Because, if they call or write in they are interested, aren’t they?

Good luck!

If you would like to know more about how to market your business effectively, e-mail the "Marketing Guy" at

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Copyright 1997 ~BizNet OnLine Magazine
Last modified: November 08, 2002