Today while I was eating my lunch — a piece of egg-plant quiche and then a blueberry Chobani with Toll House chocolate chips added (shame on me!) — I was skipping around in John Carlton’s book “The Entrepreneur’s Guide To Getting Your Shit Together.”
Carlton is one of the most successful copywriters of the past 25 years, and he’s an irreverent storyteller. I regularly read bits of his “The Entrepreneur’s Guide” for inspiration and ideas.
Today I found this gem:
Back in the good ‘ol direct-mail days you could spot a rookie marketer by the way he talked about response rates.
If he obsessed on the percent of any list that “flipped” for his product (meaning, became a buyer)…well, then you knew you were dealing with someone who was weak on the concept.
Because the percent doesn’t matter at all.
What matters is the money that comes in.
If a certain list responded at a .00001% rate, but that miniscule percent represented a million bucks in revenue, because your offer had multiple back-ends and lots of high-ticket stuff to sell…then you had a winner.
And another list, responding at a 10% clip, could be a dog, producing new customers whose lifetime value was below break-even.
Response rates aren’t accepted as currency. They don’t pay the bills and they won’t make you wealthy.
Today the “rookie marketer” mistakes show up when you and I get to the end of a month and obsess over the number retweets we received, the number of likes we got on Instagram, and the number of page views our website gained.
Social-media stats are important and useful, but they pale in comparison to the most important monthly number: the amount of money you brought in.
The “R” in ROI isn’t likes, followers, and page views. The “R” is how much money your efforts produced.