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*A Book Review*

Building A Mail Order Business

By William A. Cohen, Ph.D.

by Michael C. Gray

April 29, 1999

With Internet commerce exploding, we need a sound basis of knowledge of how to exploit it for our businesses.

There is obviously a technical aspect of operating on the Net. How to set up an attractive web page. How to create links for "visitors" to navigate the site. How to get listed on search engines. How to securely process an order.

But the principal factor in getting results from the Net is the application of sound marketing principles.

I believe a good starting point for which there is a lot of accumulated knowledge that can be applied in the web setting is direct-response marketing, formerly called the mail order business. The principle is the same as web marketing. Get your message to a target customer to get a desired response, including possibly making the decision to make a purchase.

Dr. Cohen, who has had his own mail order businesses in addition to teaching college classes in direct marketing, has written an excellent overview of how a mail order business works. Some his mentors read like the "Who’s Who" of the direct marketing industry: Melvin Powers, E. Joseph Cossman, Joe Sugarman, and Joe Karbo. This is hard-hitting, practical material.

Some of the topics covered include finding profitable products to sell, mail order media (advertising and sales letters), writing copy that sells, testing/how to measure results, and legal issues.

With the rapid development of online marketing, we are learning the Net is only part of a sound, overall marketing program. Building A Mail Order Business will help you learn some of the critical building blocks in building the marketing program for your business.

Buy it on Amazon: Building a Mail Order Business: A Complete Manual for Success.

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No B.S. Time Management for Entrepreneurs, by Dan Kennedy should be on every executive and entrepreneur's must read list. It will teach you how to cut out the unproductive parts of your day.

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Michael Gray, CPA
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