Borrowing From the Kings

Us online marketers need to learn a thing or two from old school direct response marketers.  I love every aspect of this Charles Tyrwhitt mailer:

Mailer front shot-

Mailer opened shot-

Click to Enlarge

What I love about it-

1. It’s super short: just 3 pages.
2. It’s super targeted: Charles Tyrwhitt sells everything from ties to shoes to outerwear, but this mailer talks about just one thing- their world famous shirts.
3. Super compelling content: click the image below to see a larger size shot of the offer.  The image below that analyzes the offer–

The offer-

Click to Enlarge

Offer explanation-

Here is an explanation of the numbered list above (notice how every inch of the page serves a well thought out purpose)–

1. The nucleus of this direct mailer is the incredible discount on the shirts.  The copywriter uses three distinct styles to communicate the offer (only $39.50, $39.50 for $139 and save $99).
2. Though the nucleus is the discount, to accentuate the offer the copywriter intentionally starts the letter by emphasizing quality.  Why? Because consumers have been trained to associate deep discounts with scammy offers.  By talking about quality the writer is attacking that line of negative thought.
3. While the bullet above somewhat addressed shopper concern bullet 3 is the knockout punch.  Here the copywriter explains why a sane company would make such an insane offer (they’re doing it because they know we’ll be back for full priced shirts).
4. The copywriter is using humor to sugarcoat any lingering doubt that may be in the reader’s head.
5. Now that the reader is buying into the sales pitch the copywriter needs to generate action.  He does this by introducing urgency (you only have 10 days to act on this offer) and scarcity (we can only let you buy 5 shirts at this price).
6. The in-house statistician needs to calculate ROI of this mailer.  “FINT3” acts as the campaign tracking code.
7. The founder’s signature appeals to humanistic shoppers.

From bullet 1 to bullet 7 above the copywriter is appealing to the emotional side of shoppers.  Emotions are super critical, which is why they’re addressed first.

9. Here the marketer is appealing to the rational side of shoppers.  To do this he is making 8 “superior quality” statements.
8. Bullet 8 serves as a divider between emotional and rational copy and is used to highlight shopper convenience (online, phone and store).
10. Icing on the cake.  Here the marketer wants to eliminate any and all doubt by throwing in the trump card- if you don’t love the shirt after trying it for 90 days just send it back.

I really don’t know how this mailer could be improved.

Final thought: We’ve deconstructed direct response mailers before (link).  Most are so formulaic they sound fake.  This one really does sound authentic.

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