What if I told you that a 1923 publication could hold the secret to your success in modern digital marketing? Today's episode opens a time capsule, dusting off the wisdom from Claude C Hopkins' "Scientific Advertising." Here, I marvel at Hopkins' foresight in scientifically measuring the effectiveness of newspaper ads and coupons - a century ago! I draw parallels to today's digital marketing landscape and underscore the importance of relentless testing and measurement in your marketing strategies.
Next, I dive into the realm of psychology and its connection to marketing - a concept as old as advertising itself. In a world increasingly centered around personal connection, I explore the power of curiosity, the perception of price, and the role of personal branding. I also examine the importance of user-generated content, decoding the age-old understanding of human nature and its efficacy in designing marketing strategies. I'll share insights on using lead magnets effectively and the potency of giving samples to lure prospects.
Finally, I delve into the significance of data and visuals in advertising. I unravel the strategic use of data, reminding you that specific facts and numbers are more persuasive than vague promises. I also stress the visual aspects of your ads, guiding you on selecting the right images to resonate with your audience. As I navigate through these timeless principles, I emphasize a culture of continuous testing and experimentation in marketing. So, tune in, learn from history, and let's elevate your digital marketing strategies together.
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What can a 100 year old book teach you today, in 2023, 2024, about digital marketing? A lot more than you might think. Today we're going to go back to school for history lesson to help you relearn digital marketing on this next episode of the digital marketing coach podcast.
Social media content, influencer marketing, blogging, podcasting, vlogging, tick-tocking, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, SEO, SEM, PPC, email marketing there's a lot to cover. Whether you're a marketing professional, entrepreneur or business owner, you need someone you can rely on for expert advice. Good thing you've got Neil on your side, Because Neil Schaefer is your digital marketing coach, helping you grow your business with digital first marketing, one episode at a time. This is your digital marketing coach and this is Neil Schaefer.
Hey everybody, neil Schaefer here, your digital marketing coach, and welcome to my podcast. Hey, we are getting closer to the end of the year here in the United States, we are already in Thanksgiving by the time you hear this, and I hope that you and your family are all gathered together and wherever you are in the world, I hope that you and your family are all gathered together, regardless of holiday. So here we are, episode number 344 as we wind down the year, getting closer to that elusive 350 number, which hopefully will be the last episode of 2023. As I continue writing my book, I am realizing that there has to be a way to keep what I want to teach simple, and part of keeping it simple is looking for historical examples to show you that a lot of what we talk about here is not new, it's not mystical. I'm not going to say it's the same old, same old, but there is a lot of science, data, previously written content about what we talk about today. We might have some new things, but, as I like to say, new tools, old rules, and I normally say that about the rules of social networking and online etiquette, but I think the same can be said for a lot of marketing. Now, as I write my next book, I'm really trying to infuse some history lessons, some historical analogies, into every single chapter. So I learned about this gentleman. If you are a traditional marketer you might have heard of him. I am relatively new and his name is Claude C Hopkins. Now, if that name doesn't ring a bell, he wrote a book called Scientific Advertising back in 1923. And as I write a section in my book about paid social where I'm leveraging this concept of PDCA that I've talked about for a while, it's the name of my company, pdca Social. It was featured first back in my Maximizer Social book 10 years ago. I'm realizing that I have a very, very similar mindset to what Mr Hopkins had 100 years ago. So Claude was the first guy to scientifically well, the first person could have been female the first person to scientifically measure the outcome of newspaper ads and coupons and really take advertising measurement to a new frontier. And when I told my developmental editor about this guy and my developmental editor is not a marketer he says this guy is fascinating. Any thoughts on doing a podcast on his ideas and how to adapt them for the digital first era? And that really is going to be the topic of today's podcast. As you know, some of these episodes I'm recording because I want to make sure the content gets in the book and I always perform best in front of the microphone. So here we are. So this book you can actually find online. I think it might. The copyright might have already expired so I found out these two places where you can read it online for free. It is a very short book 52 pages. Maybe back then that was a lot longer of a book, but I want to really quote, paraphrase along with. You know, additional advice I'd like to give you to let you know that what we talk about, what you need to do, is nothing new, to give you the confidence that you don't always have to be chasing after the next new shiny thing. If you stick to basics, you'll do well. So this is 1923. Okay, he starts his book with, and I quote the time has come when advertising has, in some hands, reached the status of a science. Now, you got to remember back then, before marketing, there was the term advertising, right, and he goes on to say advertising, once a gamble, has thus become, under able direction, one of the safest business ventures. In fact, he says you know, he quotes that advertising involves so little risk. Now you may be wondering you know, how does this person believe that this is the case? And this is a hundred years ago, right? But he goes on to say we learn the principles and prove them by repeated tests. This is done through keyed advertising, by traced returns, largely by the use of coupons. Keyed advertising means in an advertisement he's literally saying please send your inquiry to this specific PO box or this department, or it could be, if you listen to a radio ad, a specific phone number that you call, that there was a way to trace that return. And by repeated tests you get better and better and better. This is really what the concept of PDCA, of planned due check action, is all about, and I don't just apply it to paid social, I applied everything we do in marketing. But he goes on and this is really fascinating because once again he's talking about newspaper ads. He goes one ad is compared with another, one method with another. Headlines, settings, sizes, arguments and pictures are compared to reduce the cost of results. And 1% means much in some mail order advertising. This is exactly. If I mean, if you're doing Facebook ads and you're not comparing all these different things, you're leaving money on the table. And then he goes on to say and this is relevant perhaps to social media and brand awareness, advertising in lines where direct returns are impossible. Right, we can't directly correlate. We compare one town with another. Changes of methods may be compared in this way, measured by cost of sales. So even if you can't directly measure, you can indirectly measure by targeting different areas and seeing how those areas perform. And it could be geography, it could be age group, if you get the agents of people in the order, it could be gender, it could be lots of different things. And he goes on to say the most common way we do this is by use the coupon. We offer a sample, a book, a free package or something to induce direct replies. Thus we learn the amount of action which each ad engenders. But those figures are not final. One ad may bring too many worthless replies, another applies that are valuable. So our final conclusions are always based on cost per customer or cost per dollar of sale, not looking and I'm adding my commentary here not looking at cost per click, right, it's cost per conversion, that's cost per dollar of sale. And this notion of using a coupon, a sample, a book, a free package. If we were in a classroom together, I'd say raise your hand if you know what he's talking about here. He's talking about lead magnets. He was talking about lead magnets 100 years ago, right? How many times have you done a Facebook ad where you're promoting a webinar, a Bogo, a 10% off? Those are all different lead magnets. And by using lead magnets as a strategic tool, you can figure out which ads to which audience has performed better. So there's a utilitarian reason to use lead magnets as part of this grand experiment, of all these tests that you do. That's why I like to say there's no such thing as campaigns. It's all experiments, right, and 100 years ago. This is exactly what Mr Claude Hopkins was talking about. And he goes on to say and this is probably going to make part of the introduction to my book the lack of those fundamentals has been the main trouble with advertising of the past. Each worker has a law unto himself. All previous knowledge, all progress in the line, was a closed book to him. It was like a man trying to build a modern locomotive without first ascertaining what others had done. It was a Columbus starting out to find an undiscovered land. Men were guided by whims and fancies, vagrant, changing breezes. They rarely arrived at their port. When they did, quite by accident, it was by a long roundabout course. In other words, there is data out there. Why aren't you taking advantage of it? And what I find? A lot of smaller businesses that work with me are relying on one person for their marketing or they're relying on a small team, and those people are often limited by the experiences they have. They're not doing marketing to create the data to be able to make the best decisions. They're going based on what, as written in scientific advertising, are the whims and fancies of individual marketers. I'm going to go on a little bit because I really. He's really actually an eloquent writer and I love what he says here. Each early mariner in this sea mapped his own separate course. There were no charts to guide him, not a lighthouse to harbor, not a buoy showed a reef. The wrecks were unrecorded, so countless ventures came to grief on the same rocks and shoals. Advertising was a gamble, a speculation of the rashes sort. One man's guess in the proper course was likely to be good as another's. There were no safe pilots, because few sailed the same course twice. The condition has been corrected Now. The only uncertainties pertain to people and to products, not to methods. It is hard to measure human idiosyncrasies, the preferences and prejudices, the likes and dislikes that exist. We cannot say that an article the word he used for, like product or service, will be popular, but we know how to sell it in the most effective way. Ventures may fail, but the failures are not disasters. Losses, when they occur, are but trifling and the causes are factors which has nothing to do with the advertising. Really placing marketing as this type of well-developed science based on tests and data and this is the ship that we all need to sail we should not be going in an undiscovered land and if we are going in an undiscovered land, we are doing it for those tests, to get the data to help us navigate the path. Now there's a few other things I want to share that I think are really good ways of aligning our mindsets with 100 years old advice that I think is very sound. He goes on to say advertising is salesmanship, its principles are the principles of salesmanship, and he continues. Let us emphasize that point. The only purpose of advertising is to make sales. It is profitable or unprofitable according to its actual sales. It is not for general effect. It is not to keep your name before the people. It is not primarily to add your other salesman. Treat it as a salesman, force it to justify itself. Compare it with other salesmen, figure its cost and result. No excuses, which good salesmen do not make, then you will not go far wrong. The difference is only in degree. Advertising is multiplied salesmanship. And it's a really good mindset that I have with my clients, which is can we justify every cent that we spend in marketing and advertising? What is the justification for doing what we do? And you find that a lot of companies are stuck in the past. They keep spending because they've already done it, or they spend because it makes them feel good, but is it generating sales directly or indirectly? I have a good friend in London, sir Francis if you're listening to this podcast, not sure who used to work in the London Stock Exchange, the financial industries, and he would often say about NFTs. If I don't get what is sound about NFTs, if I cannot explain it to someone else, if I cannot understand it, then I'm just going to completely ignore it. Right, and again, if you don't understand the marketing you're doing and how it adds up, where it fits in the funnel how you can measure its value. You probably don't want to do it. And some other advice from our friend Claude. Here there is one simple way to answer many advertising questions. Ask yourself would it help a salesman sell the goods? Would it help me sell them if I met a buyer in person? A fair answer to those questions avoids countless mistakes. Right, the ad is the sale. The ad is the sale. Does it help? If it doesn't help, why are you doing it? And some more advice here and this relates to this concept of hooks that we talk about to be successful, not just in short form video, but in advertising, when you plan or prepare an advertisement, keep before you a typical buyer. This is like keeping this target persona in front of you. And in fact, as I write my book, I've often gotten the advice who are you writing the book for? You're not a single person, and it will become a better book, right. So who is the typical buyer? Your subject, your headline has gained his or her attention, and everything. Be guided about what you would do if you met the buyer face to face. And there's some funny language here. If you are a normal man and a good salesman, you will then do your level best. Don't think of people in the mass. That gives you a blurred view. Think of a typical individual man or woman who is likely to want what you sell. The persona right, your avatar. This is what he's talking about. 100 years ago, really, really brilliant stuff. Now I mentioned that. Claude talked about lead magnets and I want to share a little bit more, because perhaps all of your ads should be lead magnets. And he has a chapter called offer service that the best ads ask no one to buy. The ads are based entirely on service and, by the way, I believe all of your content should be as well. I digress. We said they offer wanted information. They cite advantages to users. Perhaps they offer a sample or to buy the first package, or to send something on approval so the customer may prove the claims without any costs or risks, and he goes on. This obviously ages itself when he talks about his examples, but he gives a few really compelling examples here. Now I don't think we send people, we send products to homes and we do things like we used to, but I just want to spark you to think of more ways you can offer more service to people, both in advertising as well as in all your content. So here's some examples. A brush maker has some 2,000 canvassers who sell brushes from house to house. He is enormously successful in a line which would seem very difficult and it would be for his men. If they ask the housewives to buy but they don't. They go to the door and say I was sent here to give you a brush, I have samples here and I want you to take your choice. The housewife is all smiles and attention and picking out one brush she sees several she wants. She is also anxious to reciprocate the gift. So the salesman gets an order, show and tell. Another example, another concern sells coffee by wagons, aging myself or aging the author in some 500 cities. The man drops him with a half a pound of coffee and says accept this package and try it. I'll come back in a few days to ask how you liked it. Even when he comes back he doesn't ask for an order. He explained that he wants the woman to have a fine kitchen utensil. It isn't free, but if she likes the coffee he will credit five cents on each pound she buys until she has paid for the article. Always some service, and I'll give you one more. The maker of the electric sewing machine Motor found advertising difficult so, on good advice, he ceased soliciting a purchase. He offered to send it any home through any dealer, a motor for one week's use. With it would come a man to show how to operate it. Let us help you for a week without cost or obligation, said the ad. Such an offer was resistless and about nine in 10 of the trials led to sales, offering service, lead magnets, and I will say some of these also come down to your sequences in terms of email communication, of how you communicate after you offer them that trial, that service. But really brilliant analogy that I'm definitely going to be putting in my chapter, and I do all the dedicated chapter on lead magnets in this book, because it is such a critical, critical concept for success in digital marketing A hundred years ago, in traditional marketing, in the era of wagons and sewing machine motors, as it is today. So Claude also has some really, really interesting advice on psychology. Psychology really being the core of marketing and there are several books influenced by Dr Robert Chaldini is obviously one of them. But marketers, entrepreneurs, business owners, creators, we all need to study more psychology and I'm going to quote this line. Well, a few paragraphs that Claude has, because I think it's really fascinating and really speaks to its value. And it really means a lot because this is written a hundred years ago. Right, human nature is perpetual In most respects. It is the same today as in the time of Caesar. So the principles of psychology are fixed and enduring. You will never need to unlearn what you learn about them. We learn, for instance, that curiosity is one of the strongest human incentives. We employ it whenever we can. Puffed wheat and puffed rice were made successful largely through curiosity. Grains puffed to eight times the normal size, food shot from guns, 125 million steam explosions caused in every kernel. These foods were failures before that factor was discovered. Similarly, we learn that cheapness is not a strong appeal. Americans are extravagant, they want bargains but not cheapness. And related to that, we learn that people judged largely by price. They are not experts, meaning if they see something expensive, they often think that it's good. So these are things you know curiosity in headlines, in images, especially when we talk about YouTube thumbnails. This is, you know, the core of marketing today. And the concept of price that people judge largely by price, they are not experts is still true today and I think it affects the way that we look at price as part of our marketing strategy, obviously pricing being one of the four Ps. So here's an interesting one that I believe speaks to user-generated content and in some ways influence our marketing, and it's a very, very short passage, but once again 100 years ago. When we look at it today, it is leveraging the same concept of psychology. So Claude talks about two concerns. These are two different stores, or shops side by side, sold women's clothing on installments. The appeal, of course, was to poor girls who desired address better. Obviously, there's a lot of sexism and male dominance. And what have you? This was written 100 years ago. Obviously, I would have worded things differently today, but I'm just reading you word from word how it was written 100 years ago, so don't shoot the messenger, okay. One treated them like poor girls and made the bear business offer. The other put a woman in charge, a motherly dignified, capable woman. They did business in her name. They used her picture. She signed all ads and letters. She wrote to these girls like a friend. She knew herself what it meant to a girl not to be able to dress her best. She had long sought a chance to supply women good clothes and give them all season to pay. Now she was able to do so with the aid of men behind her. There was no comparison in those two appeals. It was not long before this woman's long established next door rival had to quit. And I think, leveraging your personality as I continue to teach this personal branding course at UCLA Extension, I really urge all of you entrepreneurs, content creators, small business owners listening in, to lean into your personality and make more of those emotional connections, especially when you can align your personality with your brand promise, with those emotional connections. So here's another one, and I think that in marketing sometimes we try to be fancy and in fact Claude actually talks about this being fancy but really people just want to know the facts. So it's really about differentiation and finding ways to prove the value of your product. I'm going to quote these two paragraphs here. Shaving soaps, shaving cream I suppose they called them shaving soaps back then have long been advertised Abundant lather does not dry in the face, acts quickly, etc. One advertiser had as good of a chance as the other to impress those claims. These are all sort of like commodity claims. Right. Then a new maker came into the field. It was a tremendously difficult field, for every customer had taken from someone else. He stated specific facts. He said softens the beard in one minute, maintains its creamy fullness for 10 minutes on the face the final result of testing and comparing 130 formulas. Perhaps never in advertising has there been a quicker and greater success in an equally difficult field. And Claude is talking about he wasn't an advertising executive himself he's actually sharing actual data, actual companies and case studies in this book. He's not naming names, but that is based on what he has seen. So I'm just going to give you a few more bits of advice here. And this comes down to the visuals. Now he's talking specifically about visuals in advertising. Like, if you have a newspaper ad, what visual are you going to use? And he talks about perhaps creating videos and creating visuals when you work with an agency might be expensive as well. Back then they were very expensive. And he talks about how they're expensive, not just in the cost of good artwork alone, but in the cost of space. From 1 third to 1 half of an advertising campaign is often staked on the power of the picture. So are you just putting up general stock photos or are you really putting some deep thought into those visuals. He goes on anything expensive must be effective, else it involves much waste. So art in advertising, or we would call them any visuals, whether they're static or moving today, is a study of paramount importance. Pictures should not be used merely because they are interesting or to attract attention or to decorate an ad. Ads are not written to interest, please or amuse. You are not writing to please the hoi paloi. You are writing on a serious subject, the subject of money's spending, and you address a restricted minority. Use pictures only to attract those who may profit. You Use them only when they form a better selling argument than the same amount of space set in type. Obviously, visuals in ads today, especially with social media, you have to do them. But have you really thought about your visual in the type of detail that, or the type of really common sense detail that Claude talks about in scientific advertising? So he also recommends that the science shows that some things are not going to perform well in advertising. Now, it's not to say that there aren't other ways to market these sorts of products, but he says that many things are possible in advertising which are too costly to attempt. And he goes on to say that changing people's habits is very expensive. So he gives this example an advertiser at one time spent much money to educate people to the use of oatmeal. The results were too small to discover. All people know of oatmeal as the food for children in its age old fame. Doctors have advised it for many generations. This is 100 years ago and they still advise it today. People who don't serve oatmeal are therefore difficult to start. Perhaps their objections are insurmountable. Anyway, the cost proved to be beyond all possible return. There are many advertisers who know facts like these and concede them. They would not think of devoting a whole campaign to any such impossible object. Yet they devote a share of their space to the object. That is only the same folly on a smaller scale. It is not good business. So this is something that in advertising we talk about cold audiences, warm audiences, and if you're trying to change the habits of a cold audience, it's gonna be very, very difficult. A warm audience obviously that improves the chances. But he also goes on to talk about something that a lot of entrepreneurs talk about is the painkiller versus the vitamin, and I've also heard this on a podcast relating to self-publishing that I'm listening to as well, which is you wanna be the painkiller and not the vitamin, and this actually is a concept he spoke of 100 years ago. I'm gonna quote him here. Costly mistakes are made by blindly following some ill-conceived idea. An article, for instance, may have many uses, one of which to prevent disease. Prevention is not a popular subject, however much it should be. People will do much to cure trouble, but people in general will do little to prevent it. This has been proved by many disappointments. One may spend much money in arguing prevention when the same money spent on another claim would bring many times a sales. A heading which asserts one claim may bring 10 times the results of a heading which asserted another. An advertiser may go far astray unless he finds out A toothpaste may tend to prevent decay. It may also beautify teeth. Tests will probably find that the latter appeal is many times as strong as the former. The most successful toothpaste advertiser never features tooth troubles in his headlines. Tests have proved them unappealing. Other advertisers in this line center on those troubles. That is often because results are not known and compared. So once again, if you have a product, there are many, many ways to talk about that product. But you wanna be the painkiller, not the vitamin. You wanna focus on those things that would attract and not repel people Once again putting a lot of thought. And if you don't know where to start, that's where you start with the experiments. And the only way to experiment and to test these is to have fundamentally different headlines, fundamentally different images, to see if either one of them does better than the other. So it's really about building a database with first party data, really understanding who your customer is, and doing all these tests to get the data and applying them. And the book is called Scientific Advertising, and at the end of a few chapters this is one of them Claude says this chapter, like every chapter, points at a very important reason for knowing your results. Scientific advertising is impossible without that. So is safe advertising. So is maximum profit. Groping in the dark in this field has probably cost enough money to pay the national debt. That is what has filled the advertising graveyards, that is what has discouraged thousands who could profit in this field. And the dawn of knowledge is what is bringing a new day in the advertising world. It's really that knowledge that keeps me going as well. I don't want you to waste money on things that you shouldn't be on. I've seen too many companies, before bringing me into the consultant, spend a lot of wasted money, and that is what marketing is not about. So if you don't understand where your money is going, or people working for your own agency, have them report back to you, not on vanity metrics, but on why. What value does all this have? All right, a few more things I wanna talk about before I hang up the microphone for today, because there's more historical analogies here that I believe can help you with your digital marketing. So one of them is talking about information. Now, when Claude talks about information, he is talking about an ad writer, an ad and all the information it can include, but let us apply this to the role of blog posts in modern marketing. Okay, so stick with me here. This is what he said an ad writer, to have a chance at success, must gain full information on his subject. The library of an ad agency should have books on every line. That calls for research. A painstaking advertising man will often read for weeks on some problem which comes up. Perhaps in many volumes he will find few facts to use, but some one fact may be the keystone of success. This writer and he's referring to himself had just completed an enormous amount of reading medical and otherwise on coffee. This is to advertise a coffee without caffeine, ie decaffeinated coffee. One scientific article out of 1,000, peruse gave the keynote for that campaign. It was the fact that caffeine stimulation comes two hours after drinking. So the immediate bracing effects which people seek from coffee do not come from the caffeine. Removing caffeine does not remove the kick. It does not modify coffee's delights, for caffeine is tasteless and odorless. Now caffeine this coffee has been advertised for years. People regard it like near beer. Didn't realize they had alcohol free beer back then. Only through weeks of reading did we find a way to put it in another light To advertise a toothpaste. This writer has also read many volumes of scientific matter, dry as dust. But in the middle of one volume he found the idea which has helped make millions for that toothpaste maker and has made this campaign one of the sensations of advertising. Genius is the art of taking pains and I love this idea of doing research on your product to generate demand. And this is really the role of content. It's the role of content not in ads, although that could be part of it, but it's also this library of content that you build to talk about the science behind your products and services, to explain its various benefits that have been scientifically proven or proven by your customers. So I thought that was a great way of looking at the role of information that is still relevant today. So I want to go deeper on this chapter that Claude has about the use of samples, and whether it is gifting influencers, whether it is creating a brand ambassador program and giving out free samples, whether it's including a small little free sample whenever someone buys from your Shopify store. I think there are many different ways of looking at it, but I have always thought the clients that I work with I believe that any founder would say if only someone could try my product, they would love it. So I'm going to give you some medicine that Claude prescribes. That is very much aligned with this notion of gifting. And he says, and I'm going to quote the product itself should be its own best salesman, not the product alone, but the product plus a mental impression and atmosphere which you play around it. That being so, samples are of prime importance. However expensive, they usually form the cheapest selling method. A salesman might as well go out without a sample case as an advertiser. Sampling does not apply to little things alone, like foods or proprietary's. It can be applied in some way to almost anything. We have sampled clothing. We are now sampling phonograph records ie, lps, the predecessors of CDs, the predecessors to MP3s. For those of you that don't know the history of audio, samples serve numerous valuable purposes. They enable one to use the word free in ads. That often multiplies readers. Most people want to learn about any offered gift. Tests often show that samples pay for themselves, perhaps several times over in multiplying the readers of your ads without additional costs of space. You know the same thing with digital ads that when you get more clicks, the cost per click tends to go down with that right. So it's a similar concept. Actually. He goes on to say a sample gets action. The reader of your ad may not be convinced to the point of buying, but he is ready to learn more about the product that you offer. So he cuts out a coupon, lays it aside and later mails that are presented. Obviously in the modern day they click on a link, go to the website, fill out their information and if they don't fill it out, we would retarget them right. Without that coupon he would soon forget. Then you have the name and address of an interested prospect. You can start them using your product. You can give them fuller information, you can follow them up. Once you have the email address, that is what you're able to do. Right, that reader might not again read one of your ads in six months. Your impression would be lost. But when he writes you you have a chance to complete, with that prospect, all that can be done In that saving of waste. The sample pays for itself. Makes sense, right, the sample, the lead magnet, gives you an excuse to acquire contact information that you would have only acquired before only if they were ready to buy your product. And we know that at any given point in time that very few people are ready to purchase something immediately. But also, it's not just about giving out samples. Nearly Willie, he goes on to say give samples to interested people, only. Give them only the people who exhibit that interest by some effort. Give them only the people whom you have told your story. First, create an atmosphere of respect, a desire and expectation. When people are in that mood, your sample will usually confirm the qualities you claim. Here again comes the advantage of figuring costs per customer. That is the only way to gauge advertising. Samples sometimes seem to double advertising costs. They often cost more than the advertising, yet, rightly used, they almost invariably form the cheapest way to get customers, and that is what you want. The argument against samples are usually biased. They may come from advertising agents who like to see all the advertising money spent in print. Answer such arguments by tests. Try some towns with them, some without. Where samples are effectively employed, we rarely find a line where they do not lessen the cost per customer. Once again, it comes down to the data. Don't ask me. Ask me how to create a test, how to create an experiment so that we can find the answer. But the data should tell you the answer, and that's really the important thing here in scientific advertising and in modern digital marketing. All right, a few more concepts I want to talk about here, just to further prove my point that none of this is new and it's also based on sound science. We're literally standing on the shoulders of giants when we talk about this. So Claude, in chapter 15, talks about test campaigns. These are the experiments that I talk about, right, and I'm going to quote them because it's really fascinating the analogies. Almost any questions can be answered cheaply, quickly and finally by a test campaign, and that's the way to answer them, not by arguments around the table. Go to the court of last resort the buyers of your product. There are many surprises in advertising. A project you will laugh at may make a great success. A project you are sure of may fall down. All because tastes differ. So None of us know enough people's desires to get an average viewpoint. Now we let the thousands decide what the millions will do. We make a small venture and watch costs and result. When we learn what a thousand customers cost, we know exactly what a million will cost. When we learn what they buy, we know what a million we buy. We established averages on a small scale and those averages always hold. Well, you know they may not hold, but I think you get the picture. We know our cost, we know our sale, we know our profit and loss, we know how soon our cost comes back. Before we spread out, we prove our undertaking absolutely safe. So there are today no advertising disasters piloted by men who know. Once again, it's this role of experimenting right and of proving your case before you accelerate your methods or your efforts. And he further breaks us down. Give us some great advice here. Think what this means. A man has what he considers an advertising possibility, but national advertising looks so big and expensive that he dare not undertake it. Now he presents it in a few average towns at a very moderate cost, with almost no risk whatever. From the few thousand he learns what the millions will do. Then he acts accordingly. If he then branches, he knows to a certainty just what his results will be. He is playing on the safe side of a hundred to one shot. If the article is successful, it makes him millions. If he's mistaken about it, the loss is a trifle. The largest advertiser in the world makes a business of starting such projects. One by one. He finds out winners Now he has 26, and together they earn many millions yearly. These test campaigns have other purposes too. They answer countless questions which arise in business. So that's why you need to always be experimenting. So two more things I want to end with here. First and I already mentioned lead magnets I believe that in the old days they had letter writing. Today that's email marketing, and I want you to think about email marketing. In the letter writing that Claude talks about a hundred years ago. He has a dedicated chapter on it. So just a few things here, and then one more point, and then we'll finish up this episode. Every businessman receives a large number of circular letters, wouldn't you agree? We all receive a lot of emails. Most of them go direct to the waste basket. But he acts on others and others are filed for reference. Analyze those letters. The ones you act on, or the ones you keep, have a headline which attracted your interest. At a glance. They offer something that you want, something that you may wish to know. Remember that point in all advertising. Mail order advertisers do likewise. They test their letters as they test their ads. A general letter is never used until it proves itself best among many actual returns. Letter writing has much to do with advertising. Letters to inquirers, follow-up letters wherever possible, they should be tested. Where that is not possible, they should be based on knowledge gained by test. And really, we're now applying this PDCA principle of scientific advertising to emails as well. Subject line testing Testing with every email in your sequence Are you doing enough testing to ensure the greatest chance of success? And finally, this, I believe, is the final chapter of the book and I think really really great way to finish this episode this concept of really testing and having a culture of testing everything you do and letting the data speak for what you should be doing in marketing, what you shouldn't be doing. And here's the analogy that the writer writes about, or I should say Claude Hopkins A rapid stream ran by the writer's boyhood home. The stream turned a wooden wheel and the wheel ran a mill. Under that primitive method, all but a fraction of the stream's potentiality went to waste. Then someone applied scientific methods to that stream, put in a turbine and dynamos. Now, with no more water, no more power, it runs a large manufacturing plant. We think of that steam when we see wasted advertising power, and we see it everywhere. Hundreds of examples, enormous potentialities, millions of circulation used to turn a mill wheel, while others use that same power with manifold effect. We see countless ads run a year after year which we know to be unprofitable Men spending $5 to do what $1 might do, men getting back 30% of their cost when they might get 150%, and the facts could be easily proved. We see wasted space, frivolity, clever conceits, entertainment, costly pages filled with paliver which, if employed by a salesman, would reflect on his sanity. But those ads are always unkeyed. Remember, keen is being able to attribute where that ad came from, with special address or special phone number or a tracking pixel. The money is spent blindly merely to satisfy some advertising whim. Not new advertisers, only Many an old advertiser has little or no idea of his advertising results. The business is growing through many efforts combined and advertising is given a share of the credit. An advertiser of many years standing, spending as high as $700,000 per year and believe me, a hundred years ago that was worth a lot more than $700,000 in current dollars told the writer he did not know whether his advertising was worth anything or not. Sometimes he thought that his business would be just as large without it. The writer, or Claude Hopkins, replied I do know your advertising is utterly unprofitable and I can prove it to you. Next week, end an ad with an offer to pay $5 to anyone who writes you that he read the ad through. The scarcity of replies will amaze you. That was a really good way of looking at how effective things are. And then, just to sum up, what we talked about advertising is evidence that the man who pays believes that advertising is good. I think we could say the same thing about marketing in general. It has brought great results to others. It must be good for him. Well, this person, this company, is making a lot of TikTok. We should be able to make a lot too. So he takes it like some secret tonic which others have endorsed. If the business thrives, the tonic gets credit. Otherwise the failure is due to fate. It seems almost unbelievable. Even a storekeeper who inserts a $20 ad knows whether it pays or not. Every line of a big store's ad is charged to the proper department and every inch used must the next day justify its cost. Yet most national advertising is done without justification, it is merely presumed to pay. A little test might show a way to multiply returns, and this is my icky guy that there is just so much potential and in marketing for businesses. And really it's this wanting to bring advanced digital strategies to the 99% of businesses that aren't using them because they don't know about them, and that's what's really pushing me to write my next book and to bring these historical analogies to help in convincing you right To really simplify. Although these are advanced strategies, I really want to simplify them so that even the non-marketer that might be listening to this podcast can understand them in very, very clear and concise terms. Well, I hope you enjoyed my reading of some sections of Scientific Advertising by Claude Hopkins. I will put a link in the show notes as to where you can download. Well, I should say not download, but be able to read a version online. I truly enjoyed reading it and it gave me new inspiration for my book, so I sincerely hope that this episode gave you new inspiration as well. I'm going to give another humble request. We are still at 60 reviews on Apple Podcasts, so if you have gotten any value from this podcast, I'd be honored if you could just spend a minute to write a quick review. Reviews really do make a difference. The Apple algorithms are saying this dude has 344 podcast episodes but only 60 reviews can't be legit and I hope I'm legit, but only you can prove I'm legit with your review. So thank you in advance. If you do write a review, make sure you send me a screenshot, give me a shout out in the socials. I would love to mention you here on the show and that my friends. Is it for another episode of the Digital Marketing Coach podcast? This is your Digital Marketing Coach, neil Schaefer, signing off.
Thank you for watching. If you or your business needs a little helping hand, see you next time on your Digital Marketing Coach.