Sell Buzz 04/05

Promotional booklets, telemarketing's alive and kicking, and more
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Writer and Author, Specializing in Business and Finance
2 min read

This story appears in the April 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

To Call, or Not to Call?

The reports of telemarketing's death have been greatly exaggerated, according to the "2004 Response Rate Report" from the Association (DMA). Even after the creation of the National Do Not Call (DNC) Registry, telemarketing still sells more products than any other direct-response marketing tactic, with a 5.78 percent response rate.

"What we found was that in spite of a lot of talk about telemarketing's end, people are still buying," says Louis Mastria of the DMA. "About 66 million consumers bought at least once through telemarketing last year."

American Teleservices Association CEO Tim Searcy says insufficient targeting by many in the telemarketing industry was a primary factor in the creation of the DNC Registry, which, according to the , now contains 64 million telephone numbers. However, companies can still contact present and previous customers with offers and information even if they're on the DNC list.

"Companies are surviving through better targeting. If you're on the DNC list [and are receiving telemarketing calls], you have an existing relationship with the people who call," explains Searcy. "Because audio clutter is reduced, it's easier to get through to the customer."

Mastria agrees that companies that were using telemarketing appropriately in the first place are still ben-efiting: "A legitimate company isn't going to waste time and money to keep calling someone who has said that they don't want to be contacted."

Quick Pick

When organization consultant Paulette Ensign dashed off 110 Ideas for Organizing Your Life, a 16-page sharing ideas about organizing, she thought the booklet might raise a few bucks. Little did she know it would generate its own major revenue stream, selling nearly 1 million copies in four languages. At, she shares her success story as well as free articles and advice on doing it yourself. Of course, if you want real specifics, the site sells a home-study course called "How to Promote Your Business With Booklets" ($127 plus shipping) and a manual with the same title ($62.97 to download; $69.97 plus shipping for the hard copy).

After just one bad experience in a store,

80% of

women say they won't go back.
Statistic Source: Frank About Women

92% of

women say they're the primary decision-makers for most or all household purchases.
Statistic Source: Frank About Women

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