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DM Tips #14 - Viral marketing and more!

January, 2002

Published as a resource for your direct marketing work. Depend on FCC for imaginative, results-producing creative work, including direct mail - web - e-mail - ads - radio- more!


--Catch a Bug and Grin! A primer on viral marketing

- PDMA Meeting on Branding & DM to feature _____Fried-Cassorla, Bridi, Gluskin, Jan, 23 in Bethlehem

--International SOS names Fried-Cassorla to develop ______extensive collateral seriesS

--Poem - Joyous Circle

--Photos - Magnificent new Kimmel Center in Philly

--Humor - Best Veterinarian joke ever!



Dear Friend,

--NEvery day, we direct marketers are presented with new ways of reaching people -- new ideas, techniques and strategies. What remains a constant of effective selling is the need to be helpful. With that in mind, I hope you find something useful or at least diverting in our latest issue!-ays f reaching N



A Primer on Viral marketing

by Albert Fried-Cassorla

Who wants to catch a bug? Maybe if the bug is as pretty as the monarch butterfly on the right, lots of people! But a virus? Once again, plenty of people -- that is, e-marketers into viral marketing.

The desired creation in viral e-mail marketing is friendly… something that's so cool, people want to pass it on to one another.

As a result of this pass-along effect, all kinds of good things happen…

· People will visit your web site
· They will BUY, provided what's offered is enticing enough
· They can become more loyal visitors and customers
· Customer and prospect databases expand

Since all of the above are desirable consequences, the next questions is: How do you create a powerful viral e-mail program?

You have several main options. These include using humor, offering a contest or give-away, and featuring cool content. Let's take a look at each of them:

Use a Humorous approach -- with photo or animation

Everyone wants a laugh. The goal is to create something that's funny or amusing and tie it in to a reason to visit your web site for more of the same, and purchasing your product.

Here's an example that could be used for a health care magazine: A heavy cartoon lady runs, jumps, eats carrots and vitamins, and loses weight. She tugs at her loose belt and says, "I like it! I LIKE it!" Then she winks at the viewer. Variation: Maybe the computer loses weight. Lady says, "Hey, it's MY turn!" Now she slims down, too.

Go with a "Be the first to win" offer

True contests are hard to manage and must be legally complied. But you can offer first-responders something of value without a lot of complexity. If the promotion works you just run it again, expand it, or create a new and better giveaway.

An example for a health or fitness-related site might be: Win a stop-watch. The first 500 or 5000 responders get the watch. One of our business partners recently used this approach with great success. While a stop watch is certainly not the only item you could offer, it has several advantages in this selling situation:

· This is an inexpensive gift
· Most people do not yet own one
· It is health-oriented
· Everyone needs one

Positioning of the premium can vary… "Time yourself, time your kids, use it for rollerblading… Use it on runs… time your wind sprints or power walks" Another variation is to offer a pedometer.

Feature cool content

What's cool? Ask your target market, or better yet, be a part of your target market! Present the responders with a weight and exercise calculator page -- tied in via password. Can be a part of your web site.

Examples of cool content might include:

* A test of fitness knowledge
* A calculator of calories or exercise performed
* Scenic run/bike ride finder -- the customer enters a zip code, and info pops up with exciting places to visit for running or biking within a certain number of miles
* A humorous take on a challenge -- staying fit, remembering well, cooking with panache while having a busy lifestyle, entertaining the kids on trips, and so on. The only limit is the imagination.
* A riddle or quiz that's fun and yet which demands rewards demands the e-mail recipient visit your web page to get answers

Various technical means may be used to achieve the goals you want. Animated GIFs, java applets, embedded sound files, flash displays, and more. Deciding which tools to use is a decision that follows your choice of direction, knowledge of your customer base's e-mail reading capabilities and preferences, and other factors.

You may wonder… Can any of the basic approaches we've described be combined? Of course! For best results, keep all of your ideas on theme and unified. Using several incentives for pass-along power will boost your response rates. Test various combinations of incentives and approaches, and test again.

You'll catch the only virus no one wants to lose -- success.

Add muscle to your direct response creative work!

Let us help boost your response with powerful copywriting and design! Contact Fried-Cassorla Communications, Inc. now at 215-635-5189 (USA) or 


International SOS chooses Fried-Cassorla for sales collateral series

International SOS, the world's largest provider of emergency assistance services, has engaged Fried-Cassorla Communications, Inc. to revamp and expand its line of sales literature for the Americas region. The collateral will be used for individual sales and for mailings to targeted markets.

Detail sheets will be developed for the full line of SOS services. These services include Medical Assistance, Security Assistance, Travel Assistance, and a full line of leading edge Online Services. SOS employs over 2,600 people and maintains 25 Alarm Centers and 21 International Clinics around the world.

Fried-Cassorla Communications, Inc. is a full service advertising agency specializing in direct marketing, electronic marketing, e-mail, and web design. Since 1988, the company has generated over $220 million in sales for such prestigious clients as GMAC, UNISYS, CIGNA, Merck & Co., and many small to medium-sized firms.


PDMA Meeting on January 23 to focus on Branding Challenges and Direct Marketing -- Fried-Cassorla, Bridi, Gluskin to speak about Merck, UNISYS, Rodale and other firms

Direct marketing and the challenge of branding have not always been comfortable partners. To oversimplify, the first says, “Sell”, the second says “Build the Image and the third says “Conflict.”

However, marketers can successfully address the challenge of making these complex marketing dimensions work together.

In Bethlehem, PA on Wednesday, January 23, a panel of experienced marketers will present their views on how to execute strategies that build brand and get response. The panelists will be Elliot Gluskin – Rodale Inc., Gary Bridi - Bridi & Associates and Albert Fried-Cassorla - Fried-Cassorla Communications. Jeffrey Giesener, Chief Marketing Officer, BetterLiving has organized this program and will moderate the panel.

Also, on January 16th, PDMA sponsors a dinner meeting on "Stress Management" featuring Bob Horan.

To learn more about both events and to register, please visit

Need help with your e-mail campaign?
Let us help you turn pixels into profits! Call Fried-Cassorla Communications at 215-635-5189 or e-mail!

  Joyous Circle - A poetic reverie about children, play, fleeting moments, restorative appreciation... just to name a few!



Doing business abroad should be more than a roll of the dice. Targeted business intelligence changes the odds in your favor! SRS Intelligence sponsors an important conference on this critical topic on Friday, Feb. 1, 2002, in New York, NY. Learn more about this unique session HERE and about the sponsoring firm at SRS Intelligence. Reserve today by calling 215-884-9466 or e-mailing


The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

This is a just-built, striking new home for the Philadelphia Orchestra and other arts organizations!

A $260 million structure, this building gives our orchestra a fabulous new home. The architecture is an experience in itself, and the music makes it world-class.

For now, come enjoy the great views!


 When you need help with your direct mail campaign, who ya gonna call?

We've helped many companies successfully reach B2B and consumer markets with our power-packed direct mail. See the Success Stories on our web site, or even better... give us a call! 215-635-5189 (USA) or




A Man Goes to a Veterinarian...

A very distraught man goes to visit a veterinarian with an apparently dead pooch in his arms.

He places the body on the examining table of the vet and says, "Doc! Ya got a help me! My dog was alive until just a few hours ago. I think he still is. Can you do anything? Anything at all!"

The vet looks at the dog, shakes his head, and says, "I'm sorry. There's nothing that can be done.

"The man says, "But doc, surely there's something you can do!" 

The doc breathes heavily, then opens the door and out pops a pussy cat. The cat jumps up on the examining table looks over the dog's body from snout to tail, shakes his head, breathes a sigh and jumps off. The vet says, "I'm afraid it isn't looking too good."

The man says, "But doc, surely you can try something else!" The vet opens a second door and out pops a Labrador Retriever. The Lab stand up and places his paws on the

examining table, looks over the other dog's body, glances left to right and then drops down and walks away.

The vet says to the man, "That will be $645, please." The distraught man says, "How can you charge me so much just to tell me my dog is dead?"

The vet says, "Well, my fee is just $45. But you also wanted the lab test and the cat scan."



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Fried-Cassorla Communications, Inc.
"Imaginative Direct Marketing and Advertising"

e-mail: Discover resources for marketers at ---phone: 215-635-5189 fax: 215-635-0461

© Copyright 2002 by Fried-Cassorla Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.