By David R. Yale
This article appeared in The Newsletter on Newsletters, 9/25/98,
There’s a low-risk, low-cost test you should try with every successful #10 or jumbette direct mail control package you have. By adding a small, 2-color lift note, you could double your response and extend the life of your control without paying huge creative fees for a whole new package. The cost to print and insert a lift note is minimal.
The lift note must be related to the contents of the package, but it should not repeat the headline on the outer or the lead of the letter. Here are a couple of examples:
The Lift Note That Doubled Response
The envelope headline on a #10 package for the IPO Insider was "Unusual Stock Market ‘Inversion’ leads to 45.8% profit .. in 14 days!" The headline on the lift note that doubled response was "Investor Alert! Watch Out for This Scam!"
The text warned investors that the Mob was moving into IPOs and explained how the IPO Insider could warn them away from scams. This lift note was 4" x 7", folded to 4" x 3.5" with black and red text. The package with the lift note launched a successful new publication.
For The Senmontier Strategy, another investment newsletter, the head on a #10 package was "The Hidden Bull Market Almost No One Talks About Produces Profits of 1296%… It’s Not Stocks!"
The lift note’s headline was "The Mystery of the Chinese Egg Puzzle," with text explaining investment opportunities created by Chinese demand for more dairy products. The client liked it so much it was rolled out without testing, and it’s still the control.
You can usually find a strong lift note theme buried in the text of the letter. Lift notes are usually folded so, they fit into the envelope and create reader involvement in opening them. Good design is a must, so they jump out at the prospect. And strong copy is critical to keep the prospect reading and make the sale.