How to use “Tear Sheet Mailings” to boost prospect response…

The strategy I’m going to go over today reveals one of the biggest kept secrets in the marketing game.

In its true form, a “tear sheet mailing” is an ad or direct mail piece that is written to look like a newspaper article about you or your business. It is produced and laid out like any article you might have seen in a newspaper or magazine. It is printed on news print type paper.

The back of the sheet is printed with an actual newspaper page or stock market quote page. You would determine what to put on the back page based on the type of product you are selling.

For example, if you sold health products, you might make the back page look like it was in a health magazine. I did many of them to get prospects when I was in the insurance industry. I made the back look like it was a page from the stock market quote of a newspaper.

You have probably seen this at some point when it came in your mail. Most of the time it had a post-it note attached to it that looked like it was handwritten with a message that said: “Came across this article a thought it would help you.”

You can create a similar message to fit your product.

You should do it in such a way that you don’t run afoul of any regulatory agency.

First, avoid printing copyrighted material on the back of the sheet, unless you obtain written permission and/or are reprinting an actual newspaper article about you (rather than the one you have “faked.”)

Second, if you have serious concerns about the legalities and plan widespread public use, put an “Advertisement” or “Advertorial” message on the top of the page.

Third, don’t send them out alone with the Post-It notes, designed to make the recipient believe he received it from a friend. You’ve got to include a sales letter with a way for them to respond to you. Otherwise, your effort will be wasted.

I’ve used the tear sheets I created as handouts at trade shows or various consumer shows that I’ve attended. I’ve even tested them in the Val Paks without a post-it note and received excellent results.

But direct mail always worked so much better for me. They provide a great combination of high readership because of the believability of it, and the very, very low cost to do it.

To see what a tear sheet looks like, click on the links below.  The first link is an image of the top of a tear sheet I created.  The second link shows you what the bottom half of the page looks like.

The last link shows you what I put on the back of the page.

Let me if you have questions.


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24 Responses to “How to use “Tear Sheet Mailings” to boost prospect response…”

  1. Rene says:

    I wish there was a sample for us to see because I do not understand what you mean.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Rene,
    Hi Rene, I’ve revised the article and added some links near the bottom of it, so you can see what a tear sheet looks like.

    Let me know if you have any more questions.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  2. Victor Quinn says:

    We send a mailing to new homeowners re our tax prep services. The initial letter is 4 pages, 4 color, very classy. How can we use a tear sheet as a follow up mailing.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Victor Quinn,
    Hi Victor. You wouldn’t want to use the tear sheet as a follow up to your letter. You’ll want to use it as your lead generator. So the next time you are looking for leads, you can use a tear sheet instead.

    I’ve revised the article and added some links near the bottom of it, so you can see what a tear sheet looks like.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  3. Chuck Chadwick says:

    A sample would enhance the learning curve.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Chuck Chadwick,
    Hi Chuck,

    I’ve revised the article and added some links near the bottom of it, so you can see what a tear sheet looks like.

    Check it out and let me know if you have any questions.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  4. Pauldz says:

    See here for sample tear sheet: http://tinyurl.com/4eabj3j

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Pauldz,
    Hi Pauldz, thanks for including the link to view a sample. I’ve also revised my article and added some links near the bottom of it, so everyone can see a copy of a tear sheet I used.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  5. Pat M says:

    Hi

    I used tear sheets several years ago to mortgage prospects and tailored the message to the list criteria that I purchased. It was very effective. I did use the Post-It message to appear that it was coming from a friend. That is no longer permitted in the mortgage industry. The tearsheets were very expensive, however. I am interested in learning more about the low cost you mentioned in your article.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Pat M,
    Hi Pat, when I mention low cost, I am referring to the cost as related to the return on investment. The results with a tear sheet can be so good, that the cost is low relative to the return.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  6. Chrisitne says:

    would love to see a form you recomend.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Chrisitne,
    Hi Christine, I’ve revised the article and added some links near the bottom of it. Click on the links to see images of a tear sheet I used.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  7. Marie says:

    I often see tear sheets in local newspapers. Print ads are very expensive however, so, for someone just starting a business, it might not be very practical. Advertising on other people’s websites. is much more affordable for small start-up businesses, like mine. Will keep the tear sheet idea in mind for future advertising.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Marie,
    Hi Marie, yes, you do have to make your marketing decisions based on what you have to spend and the expected return. If you are just starting out, a tear sheet may not be the best thing for you to do, especially if you haven’t done the proper testing of your market and your copy.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  8. Nelton says:

    I have never seen the “tear sheets” concept. An example would be helpful.

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Nelton,
    Hi Nelton, I’ve revised the article and added some links near the bottom of it, so you can see what a tear sheet looks like. Take a look at it and let me know if you have any questions.

    Ken

    [Reply]

  9. Nelton says:

    Hi Ken
    I looked at the links and I am satisfied with what I saw.
    Thanks a million.

    Nelton

    [Reply]

  10. Do you have a list of printers that we can order our tearsheets from?

    I am having a very hard time findong a tearsheet printer online.

    Thanks

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Kevin DelGaudio,
    Hi Kevin, here is the company I used:
    Specialized Mailing Services, Inc.
    7691 Woodwind Dr.
    Huntington Beach, CA 92647
    714-274-2284
    http://www.specializedmailing.com

    [Reply]

  11. Bruce Fisher says:

    Where do you get tearsheets printed?

    [Reply]

    Ken Varga Reply:

    @Bruce Fisher,
    Bruce, see my reply immediately above your question. It has the contact information for a company that does tear sheets.

    [Reply]

  12. I for all time emailed this webpage post page to all my associates, because if like to read it next my friends will too.

    [Reply]

  13. Affiliate says:

    Attractive section of content. I just stumbled upon your web site and in accession capital to assert that I get actually loved account your blog posts. Anyway I will be subscribing in your augment and even I achievement you get right of entry to consistently quickly.

    [Reply]

  14. Anna O says:

    Do you have any printers you recommend to print these tear sheets on 30# newspaper print? I found just a couple and would like to do more comparative shopping. Thank you

    [Reply]

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