Marketing experts talk about "followup" and then try to suggest how often, when, and what else to add to an original message. There is no "this works every time formula."
Yesterday I sent another email to prospects about the new magazine SCORE (comes out tomorrow or later tonight). A spate of positive replies ensued ranging from: "How can one use PayPal without a website?" to "I am dropping my check in the mail" to "It IS a bargain, where do I send the money?"
The answers to these questions have pretty much always been in the emails I send. Yet when I sent a follow up email, people read that one insteaad! This time, I'm the one who doesn't get it!
1. My bulk email sender requires that when I am making an email to anyone I don't "regularly" do commercial business with, that I include an email address... which I do. And a street address, which I do.
2. I've mentioned in my publications and mailings HOW to pay using PayPal. One person thought that could only be done USING my website. That is NOT the case. I have a "placeholder" website, www.thinkerspressinc.com but it doesn't take orders... it lists an email address. Simply GO to YOUR PayPal account and after putting in your Password, click the SEND money tab. Put in $20 (or whatever amount you want to send), the email address who you are sending it to (mine is: email@example.com) and click "send" or "submit," whatever the button suggests.
So a website IS involved, but it is PayPal's website only. Yes, I am aware some business web sites take PayPal and the payer doesn't have to know anything else, but that is not the only way.
3. My address is: 1524 LeClaire Street, Davenport, IA 52803 USA if you are mailing me a check, money order, or your credit card information. Some ask if I take "American Express." No, not anymore. I have found that almost all AE owners usually have another credit card of the Visa, MasterCard, or Discover variety, which I have taken for a long time.
Some babies are breast fed (simple), and some are bottle fed (more steps). Until I get my web site up I am doing the bottle fed version.
My good Tennessee friend Roy M. said "Web sites are practically free these days." He was kidding, but in fact to set up a web site that is other than a splash page telling about a business is a lot different than setting up 400 items, describing them, scanning book and dvd covers, pricing, and maintaining them. This doesn't include setting up a payment system, tiered pricing, blogs, and any other Special Events.
My sister Jo designed her own web site and it took her a year and included payment systems. Her web site is very inclusive and complicated. Yes, there are "ready mades" but almost NONE of them will work for a business that is anything but extremely simple. When you see CNN, or the USCF web site, underneath all that, there is a LOT of jazz going on and usually more than one programmer involved, and constantly involved.
So myself and my web programmer are working on it and we hope to surprise those who specifically NEED a web site one day. My time estimates have been wrong on this because I have deadlines to meet and orders to fill--otherwise, I can't buy groceries or pay utility bills. It is like that when one is self-employed--money doesn't come in automatically, one must keep priming the pump UNTIL the concern will run in a regular fashion.
In the meantime, you can still call me with credit card information, or email it to me (I need the same thing I have always needed: 16 digit credit card number, the expiration date, and nowadays, the 3-digit set on the back of the card). If you prefer paying by PayPal just do what I suggested above. Some wag wrote once that there is "more than one way to skin a cat." Why would anyone want to skin a cat? But, I am sure it is true. Some do not want to email me their financial information and that is fine--just give me a ring at: 563-271-6657. I usually have that number with me unless: I am in the shower, asleep, or in the head. Unlike some, I do not live with my phone.
I am still getting orders for SCORE this morning. Thanks to all of you.
PS: By the way, Blogs confuse some too. One fellow thought he could order through my Blog. My blog site is run by Google. To my knowledge Google doesn't allow such things. But I often do list a way to contact me, such as: firstname.lastname@example.org -- as here.
Years ago I told my then webmaster that a lot of folks didn't understand the internet, using payment methods, had fears of their identity being compromised, etc. and she found that hard to believe. She found it hard to believe also when I said "25% of my clients did not own or use a computer!" These "webby" people read these "polls" but I wonder if anyone actually polls those who mail me checks (I have a number of customers who DO know how to use a computer and still mail me their check... why not, they have their own ideas on how they want to use their credit cards, if they have them.)
I do not yet own an iPhone or an iPad even though I wish I had the coin to do so. Thus, even though I understand quite a bit of technology, I don't engage in all of it just to say that I do.
Many companies (most?) today won't accept hand-delivered or mailed resumes. They only want "digitally" submitted resumes according to THEIR standards, which, not amazingly enough, vary from company to company and almost NEVER are totally applicable to the job you are seeking! I know, I tried this. It got so tiring I gave up and anyone who knows me knows that is not easy for me to do. It is ONLY a mechanism to "weed out" applicants and settle on what is left. In the meantime, the "perfect" potential employee for that position may have been dismissed because they didn't have an AA degree and yet smartswise might've been better than anyone else in the company. Andrew Carnegie surrounded himself with smart people and yet he was the richest man in the world. But, he was the one who started his company, not some nincompoop in HR who thinks he/she knows what they are doing because they went to college.
Think about this: if 100 is the average IQ in the US, why do so many feel they are above average, IQ-wise? Why do they assume their children are? Why do they assume their bosses are? Another thought. It is known that 1 in 25 people are sociopaths (no conscience) and that some of them are in positions of responsibility (and yet who often act extremely irresponsibly) such as CEOs and heads of departments such as HR. Sociopaths LOVE (if they can love anything) those who are manipulatable or very malleable. If you don't do it THEIR way, better to not do it at all. With regards to ordering and paying for merchandise from G&L CHESS or Thinkers' Press, inc. I offer many different ways of doing so including making an appointment to stop by and see me (just bring a wheelbarrow!)
Still willing to answer anything I haven't covered. Tomorrow is the Big Day SCORE gets launched. Climb aboard.