What Really Sells in Mail Order Magazines

You can only make money with the Mail Order Magazines if you understand exactly WHO reads them. The Mail Order Magazines are trade papers read almost exclusively by Mail Order Dealers or by Opportunity Seekers, who are in reality aspiring Mail Order Dealers. They will only buy merchandise that will help them in the operation of a Mail Order Business.


It is almost always a waste of money to advertise merchandise which is intended for general consumption in the Mail Order Magazines… unless you are offering it on a wholesale or drop-ship basis.


Below is a brief description of 22 products or services that can be sold successfully through the Mail Order Magazines.


1. RUBBER STAMPS – Every Mail Order Dealer purchases at least one name and address rubber stamp. He also purchases “stock stamps” with slogans such as “Big Mails Wanted”, “Commission Circulars Wanted”, “Third Class Mail”, “Your Ad Solicited”, etc. Rubber stamps sell well in the Mail Order magazines because dealers use them in the conduct of their business.


2. MAILING LISTS – Mail Order Dealers constantly buy mailing lists of the ever present Opportunity Seekers, New Mothers, Book Buyers, Gift Buyers, etc. You can sell mailing lists on plain paper or gummed labels. Naturally you can charge more for the lists on gummed labels.


3. BIG MAILS – Anyone who regularly advertises “Big Mails” in the Mail Order magazines will get orders for them. Big Mails consists of envelopes full of Mail Order Magazines, Adsheets and circulars of every imaginable kind. The “Big Mail Order Dealer” earns his profit by selling a variety of sizes of ad space and subscriptions in the publications which he co-publishes. He also makes money from the items offered on the circulars which he includes in his big mails.


4. CIRCULAR MAILING SERVICE – Set up an efficient, and a good dependable mailing service so that dealers can get their circulars into the hands of real Mail Order buyers, advertise it regularly in the Mail Order Magazines. and you will soon have all the circular mailing business you can possibly handle.


5. PRINTING – Every mail order dealer buys printing. He buys envelopes, sales letters, circulars, booklets, catalogs, adsheets, brochures, price lists, letterheads, mail order magazines and a thousand other things. If you do mimeographing, letter press or offset printing, advertise your service in the mail order magazines. It is probably the mail order magazines’ Number One All-Time Profit Maker.


6. INFORMATION FOLIOS – Mail order dealers will always buy information that will help them succeed in the mail order business. Folios that deal with any practical aspect of mail order selling can be sold through the mail order magazines. If you have produced your own folio and are willing to drop-ship orders for other dealers you will definitely make money.


7. DROP-SHIP AND WHOLESALE OFFERS – If you have a large stock of merchandise which is suitable for mail order sales, and are willing to supply it on a drop-ship (single order at wholesale prices) or on a wholesale basis, then you should advertise in the Mail Order Magazines. Dealers are constantly looking for new products to sell by mail. If you plan to sell on a wholesale basis only, you should offer your product in very small wholesale lots, if possible. Most Mail Order Dealers are part-timers and do not have vast sums of money to invest in untested merchandise.


8. SAMPLE COPIES OF MAIL ORDER MAGAZINES – Mail order dealers have a very insatiable appetite for new mail trade magazines, which is why hundreds of them come into existence and then disappear every year. If you publish or co-publish a mail order magazine, advertise sample copies of it in other publications and you will get requests for it.


Regard your sample copy as a “leader item” or as a “good will builder”. It should be your way of getting your other offers into the hands of a very many prospective mail order buyers. You will probably sell some ads, but do not expect to sell too many subscriptions. Except for a few of the leading publications, very few people subscribe to mail order magazines.


9. GUMMED LABELS – Labels of any kind are “naturals” for many of the Mail Order Magazines. (Name and address labels, shipping labels, addressing labels, slogan labels, etc.)


10. NAME LISTING SERVICE – Whether he admits it or not, most every mail order dealer is a “Big Mail Addict”. If you compile mailing lists and work with another dealer who does, dealers will pay to put their names on the lists. You can advertise you name listing service in any mail order magazine and get orders for it.


11. COMMISSION CIRCULARS – There are circular mailers who watch every issue of every mail order magazine, always looking for new sources of commission circulars. There is no better way to advertise commission circulars than by placing ads in the mail order magazines.


12. COPY WRITING SERVICE – If you have a natural flair for writing ads, sales letters and circulars… and if you have a good basic knowledge of mail order selling , you can sell your services through many of the better mail order magazines. There are very few good mail order copy writers at present. Here is a very basic need… can you fill it?


13. AD DESIGN – Another service which is greatly in demand, the commercial artist who can create eye-catching ads and circulars which dealers can use to sell their products. There are only a few dealers who are now offering this service, but there is room for a dozen or so.


14. TYPESETTING – Most mail order printers and magazines now require “camera-ready” copy. This had created a big demand for dealers who offer a quality, reasonably price typesetting service. At present there are dealers who do mail order typesetting that have so much business they don’t even bother to advertise..


Related to typesetting, are the “clip-art” books which are used by dealers who prepare their own “camera-ready” copy… Right now as always, you’ll find clip-art books advertised in mail order publications.


15. PEN PAL, LONELY HEARTS MAGAZINES – For some reason, you will find that the mail order magazines have always been good places to sell these types of publications. It may be because they are the only kinds of magazines, other than the mail order magazines that are co-publishable.


Most mail order magazines will accept ads for legitimate matrimonial and pen pal magazines; however, very few will accept any “adults only” ads. Too many readers object and some mail order dealers are minors.


16. HOBBY MAGAZINES – You can sell almost any kind of hobby publications through the mail order magazines. This is because many dealers handle hobby merchandise and are always looking for new ways to sell it. Many dealers and readers are hobbyists and collectors themselves.


17. FORMULAS – Dealers buy formulas for two reasons. Some dealers reprint the formula and sell it by running ads in national publications. (“Sure way to kill cockroaches”, etc.) Some even manufacture the product itself and sell it by mail.


Closely related to formula selling is recipes selling. If you can create new recipes or have exceptional ones, you advertise and sell recipes over and over again.


18. CATALOGS – If you can produce low cost catalogs which dealers can mail to their customers offering books, novelties, gift items, baby merchandise, printed forms, etc., you would be well advised to offer your services in the mail order magazines.


19. UNPRINTED DEALERS MERCHANDISE – If you can supply merchandise which the dealer can use in his mail order business, at bargain prices, you can sell it profitably in the mail order magazines. Examples: unprinted envelopes, typewriter ribbons, addressing labels, stencils, scratch pads, etc. There are a few successful dealers who even sell large, bulky items like typewriters, mimeograph machines, file cabinets, paper cutters, and printing presses by mail.


20. AD SPACE – Every mail order dealer buys ad space. If you publish or co-publish a mail order magazine, tabloid or adsheet, you can sell ad space by advertising it in other mail order magazines.


21. ADS TO RUN UNDER YOUR OWN NAME – Can you supply ready-made ad copies which other dealers can run under their own names and fill their orders on a drop ship basis? If so, print up your ads and sell them through the mail order magazines. If you can supply “camera ready” ads and circulars, so much the better!


22. MAIL ORDER PLANS – Opportunity seekers are always looking for new mail order plans. If you have some practical legitimate workable plans that others can use to make money by mail, print them up and advertise them in the mail order magazines.


You will find that 99% of all the ads in the mail order magazines fall into one of the categories listed above. If you are selling a product or service that fits into one of these categories, you can safely advertise it in the mail order magazines.



Copyright 2004 by DeAnna Spencer

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