In my mind and the minds my leadership team there has always been an underlying question:
“Why, despite a consistent response rate hovering around the 1-2 percent mark year-over-year, does there always seemed to be a number of mail recipients who would not respond to a seminar invitation?”
Several years ago, we engaged the services of Waypoint Data Systems to conduct a comprehensive review of past seminar responders. The goal: Identify key demographic markers that would indicate the likeliness of a prospect to attend a dinner seminar. In the process of that modeling exercise, Waypoint reported that less than 2-in-10 Americans had attended more than three (3) dinner seminars. This meant that the 2 percent average response rate was not due in any measurable fashion to chronic seminar attendees – commonly called “plate lickers.”
It also identified a segment of the population that was NOT going to respond to traditional seminar marketing efforts – despite their overwhelming need for financial and estate planning advice.
What are these people looking for instead?
The answer presented itself in the application of the product development strategies identified in the best-selling book, ¹Blue Ocean. The basic idea behind the Blue Ocean Strategy is that an organization may experience higher growth and increased profits by creating new demand in an uncontested market space instead of trying to compete in a market space that is already overcrowded with competitors. For us, that means developing new ways to market to consistent audiences, like Concierge Consultation.
What do you do to overcome these challenges?
We have our own processes, but we also like hearing what everyone is doing or would like to do in the future to handle this issue.
Jorge Villar is President of Response Mail Express (RME), with more than 26 years of direct marketing experience, he is known in several industries for his ability to create mail packages that garner the highest response rates. He is responsible for the Seminar Success program that, for the last 17 years has accounted for more than 65% of the events being held in the nation with over 14 million individuals making reservations. Mr. Villar has also been very successful marketing to physicians and business owners regarding Success Planning and Asset Protection. Response Mail Express, and parent company DME, is a $100+ million marketing powerhouse, housing over 600 employees in their 2 state-of-the-art facilities in Florida. Their marketing ideas are presently being utilized by over 10,000 clients, including: top producing advisors, estate planning attorneys, large financial organizations, health care organizations, universities and many other industries. Mr. Villar is a frequent key note speaker at national financial symposium and training conferences.
Note: This blog entry is a shortened version of a comprehensive White Paper on this subject. To receive a copy of the full document, please contact Josh Danielson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
¹Blue Ocean Strategy, (Boston: Harvard Business School Press 2005), ISBN 1591396190
Academy Guest Blogger
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
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San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (800) 846-1555
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