First off, you can have a lot of fun with mail order even if you don't make a lot of money. It is something that can be done at home, by anyone regardless of their physical condition as long as they can read and write. I don't mean that you have to be an intellectual. Most of mail order is conducted in simple easy to understand language.
Let's take the example of a bed ridden person, still at home with his or her family. This example has very little money to spend, is bored to tears with television, either does not want to or cannot read novels or non-fiction.
...Or, it could be the person taking care of an invalid who cannot leave the house just anytime they want to and who also is not loaded with cash to spare..
...Or it could be the housewife with little kids who needs an interest in life.
...Or it could be the retired person with too much time on his or her hands.
...Or it could be the shy bashful person who has difficulty in dealing with people face to face.
...Or it could be the physically repulsive person, or handicapped person who dreads facing the public.
The one thing you can do is make your daily mail an event to look forward to. You can do this cheaply.
One way is to just order something by mail. In your newspaper, usually on Sunday there are often inserts from companies like Sunset House, Walter Drake Co. etc. that offer inexpensive items. Order something from them even if it barely meets their minimum order.
These companies eventually sell their Address Lists to other companies and you will start receiving catalogs and offers. I ordered some inexpensive address labels in September. It is November now and so far I have received catalogs for clothing, cheese, fruit cakes, five mail order houses like Walter Drake Co., office supplies, and several others.
Place magazine subscriptions, as many as you can afford and for things that interest you. They too sell their subscription lists.
Just these two things will get you pounds and pounds of what some people call junk mail and what I call fun mail. You don't have to order any of the things you get offers for. Just when your fun mail slows down, order something cheap or place another magazine subscription and your fun mail will speed up again.
There is another way to make your mailbox more interesting. There are thousands of mail order dealers who publish newsletters or small ad sheets and sell information by mail. Many of them offer classified ads for anywhere from 5 cents to 10 cents a word. Many of them offer to publish your camera ready ad 1 inch size for $1.00. Placing an ad in any one of them will flood your mailbox with mail. Some of them have a "BIG MAIL WANTED" column. For $1.00 or $2.00 they will list your name and address as a "BIG MAIL WANTED". The flood of mail will become a torrent.
Most of this mail will be offers of ways to make money, and copies of other newsletters and ad sheets sent in the hope that you will place an ad in their publication too. You do not have to respond to any of this flood of offers. Once again for a $1.00 bill and a postage stamp, you have increased your daily mail ten fold or more. Later we will discuss how you can use this flood of mail to make money yourself. Right now we are just discussing the FUN of mail order.
Once again, when the flood slows down, palace an ad in any of the sample copies of newsletters or ad sheets and the flood will start up again.
For the purpose of fun mail it does not matter what your ad is trying to sell. Your intent is just to get on people's mailing lists so that your daily mail is the receipt of something besides bills from creditors.
Following is some sample ads you might place that do not require you to send them anything back.
BIG MAIL WANTED. Send me your best offers. (your name and address)
Opportunities Wanted! All offers welcome. (your name and address)
It takes a while for the flood of mail to start but when it does you are going to receive so many offers of ways to make money that your head will spin. You never have to respond to any of these offers. If your purpose is just to have fun mail, the only thing you ever need to do is:
Order something by mail like a magazine subscription or from anyone's mail order catalog
Place another $1.00 ad in someone's newsletter or ad sheet.
BUT MAYBE YOU WILL BECOME INTERESTED IN TRYING TO MAKE MONEY IN MAIL ORDER YOURSELF.
You certainly are going to see hundreds of ways other people are trying to make money. Here is a partial list of what you will receive if you place an ad with the people listed above. If you think you will want to dabble in mail order yourself, I suggest you place a $1.00 ad with all three people. They are from different parts of the United States and will have different mailing lists. Your ad will be seen by 1000 people in each newsletter or ad sheet. For $3.00 your name will probably be picked up by at least 1/2 of these people and probably more.
The offers you will probably receive are:
Copies of other newsletters, and ad sheets. A copy of each ad sheet or newsletter that your ad is in. Chain letters Multi-level sales schemes Information sellers Ad sellers Offers for you to sell books Offers for you to sell information Offers to introduce you to mail order Requests for money Requests for coupons, stamps, etc. Offers from other people who what you to place ads with them. Offers to sell magazines. Post office laws - you buy Offers to sell you BIG MAIL packets Offers to do typesetting Offers to sell rubber stamps Offers to sell labels Print and Mail offers Offers to sell name lists Offers to sell "How to" books Offers to sell "How to" reports and folios AND MANY MORE
At some point in time you will be tempted to stop thinking of this flood of mail as fun mail and start calling it opportunity mail. (I still call it fun and opportunity mail.)
Let me warn you. Chain letters re illegal. Dave Rhoads and Edward Green do not exist. You can not make money with chain letters. A chain letter tells you to mail $1.00 or more to three or four people and place your name in number three of four position and mail out copies to 100 or more people. You are told that when you name reaches #1 position you will make a fortune. Don't believe it. You will spend $29.00 in postage to mail 100 copies and you will never receive even one dollar back. (Jason Robards doesn't exist either.)
Some of these will include an offer to send you 100 names and addresses to mail your circulars to, for a price. Don't fall for it. Some of them will request stamps instead of dollars. The stamp chain letter activity is very high right now. People think it is not illegal because no money is involved.
You wouldn't get into any trouble by trying these schemes. The Post Office can't possibly catch everyone doing it and doesn't prosecute participants. But you will waste your money and this particular activity does nothing to increase your fun and opportunity mail.)
Another thing to beware of is multi-level marketing. You will receive hundreds of schemes from simple ones to schemes so complex you can read the offer for hours and still not comprehend what they are offering. There are some legitimate multi-level schemes but they are based on the old pyramid structure. In order for you to actually make money with them you have to devote hours and hours and dollars and dollars in postage building up what they call downlines - people you are supposed to sign up to sell the same thing. Beware of these. They always fail in the end and many people have lost a lot of money on them. Save any participation in multi-level marketing until you have really absorbed mail order in general and read the articles written by experts, pro and con.
If you have decided to get your feet wet, I suggest you start by trying to sell information. I did not intend this article to be a sales presentation and I am making this offer only to help you get started. You can sell this report. Here are several ways to market it:
Place the following ad in as many ad sheets and newsletters as you can afford. Place several in publications that offer to print and mail your ad for $1.00. Place at least one in a publication that is mailed to 5,000 or 10,000 circulation.
HOW TO HAVE FUND WITH MAILORDER. AND MAYBE MAKE SOME MONEY. Send $2.00 to: (your name and address)
Start with the advertisers mentioned earlier and if you can afford to do so, also place this ad in several publications. It will be a 2" ad and will cost $2.00 instead of $1.00:
HOW TO HAVE FUN WITH MAILORDER AND MAYBE MAKE SOME MONEY. Detailed report. Put some FUN MAIL into your life. Make money too if you want to. Send $2.00 for report. (your name and address).
If you can afford to do so, also place this ad. It will be a $1.00 ad.
HOW TO HAVE FUND WITH MAILORDER AND MAYBE MAKE SOME MONEY. SEND FIRST CLASS STAMP TO: (your name and address)
Attached to this report is a circular designed to sell this report. In ad #3 above, when you receive a stamp and a request you will then send them the circular with your name on it as the seller. Just insert your name and have copies made at your local copy center.
You will also have copies of this report made to send to people who respond to ads #1, #2 or to the circular. Don't make the copies until you receive your first order. Then make about 10 copies at a time.
This exercise is just to get your feet wet. It shows you that whatever you decide to sell, you carry a theme for your ads and circulars. The name of this one is "How to Have Fun with Mailorder and Maybe Make Some Money". It is in every ad. It is the title of the circular. It is the tile of the report itself.
You will only make $2.00 less copy and postage costs for each report sold but you are learning how to handle paperwork and orders. You are seeing your Fun and Opportunity Mail turn into Money Producing Mail. Every day you can't wait for the mail to arrive with a few dollar bills in it.
Will you make a fortune selling this report. NO. You won't. You'll get most of your responses from ad #3 and mot of your sales from the circular you send out. You'll make a few dollars, yes. These dollars will trickle in over a period of months. Some will start arriving within a month and they'll hit a peak and then go on for about a year, one or two orders at a time..
You can now consider some of the other offers you have received and seen in the various publications you receive. If you have handled the paperwork with the sale of this report you can add another offer. Maybe you'll sign up for a dealership to sell rubber stamps or you'll try Print and Mail. Certainly the purchase of a rubber stamp with your name and address on it is not a lost money effort. You can use it for your personal correspondence if you decide to forget mail order. With a rubber stamp you can offer to mail circulars, etc. for other people. They send you their circulars, you rubber stamp your name and address in the Order Form section and you mail them out.
You can mail four pieces of paper 8-1/2 x 11 for a first class stamp. You should have at least four things to offer so you don't waste postage.
The people who make money in mail order started this way. Some of you will go on to become full time mail order professionals. Some of you will just dabble around for the fun of it and keep the fun and opportunity mail going. How do you become professional?
You keep adding things to your agenda. You can reinvest all the money you receive into more ads. You sign up for more dealerships. You send for a few books on mail order success and study everything you receive in the mail. You read all the articles published in the newsletters.
You may decide to design your own circulars, prepare your own reports. You may sell recipes. You keep getting more and more involved until you are offering as many as 50 to 100 different things in ads. You place ads in all the newsletters and ad sheets and have 10 to 12 ads running at any given time. Your mail box gets fuller and fuller. You may try to publish your own ad sheet or newsletter. After studying the field for a full year you may select one or two of the multi-level schemes to try. (Be sure it is one that sells a product of some kind that is drop shipped. Do not invest your money in a product that will sit on your shelf forever if you can't sell it!)
You join a few of the associations of dealers. You correspond with other dealers. Some of them have become so successful that they bought their own printshop. Others at least invested in a copy machine and a computer.
You develop you own address list and maintain it. To be professional, you just keep at it and if one thing fails you try another. If one ad doesn't get response you try another.
Remember, you develop your business as you go along and as you can afford it in both time and money. If money runs out you can pause and continue again when you can.
What you do is entirely up to you.
If you want fast response place ad #3 in The National Enquirer, Star or Globe scandal sheet. It costs a lot but you should get lots of requests to send your circular to and many of them will result in orders.
Copyright 2004 by DeAnna Spencer
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