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Posts by Tom Ruwitch

Marketing Lessons from an Influential Fisherman

(Author’s note: After posting this, I spoke to the fisherman featured below. He asked me to identify him by name in the post. So, in this version of the story, I have changed the fisherman’s name to respect his wishes.) My buddy Mark is a great fisherman. He fills his social media with photos of…

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Be Careful With Statistics. They Can Mislead.

As I write this, I’m sitting in Nashville, Tennessee, where I’m attending a music festival. Last night I dropped my cousin off at her apartment on the west side of town. We drove 25 minutes and were still within the city limits of Nashville. Nashville covers 526 square miles. St. Louis covers 66 square miles.…

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Video Quick Tip: The Secret to Getting Your Emails Opened

So you want to increase your open rates. Here’s a video quick tip in which MarketVolt President Tom Ruwitch explains how to make that happen.  If you want to increase the open rate for the next email you send, make the email you last sent more relevant, more interesting, more informative. Open rates go down…

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Don’t Waste Time Overdesigning Emails

Photo of graphic designer fussing with color choices

Someone who subscribes to my twice-weekly emails wrote to me recently with a suggestion: Make the emails prettier. My emails are text-only. No logo. No pictures. No colored text. No multi-column layouts. Just copy. “Why pretty ’em up?” I asked. “To make them more appealing,” she said. “If I don’t make them pretty, will you…

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How NOT to Handle a Crisis

LouFest, an annual outdoor music festival in St. Louis’ Forest Park, was canceled this morning — three days before the event. Ticket-holders, vendors, sponsors and lots of other random folks are ticked off. We didn’t plan to pile on. Plenty of people are spreading lots of pixels and ink to describe LouFest management’s incompetence. We…

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How Do You Know When the Price is Right?

Knowing what price is best for your email marketing campaign can change things – here's a photo of a hand with a scale representing value and price.

While visiting an online forum for marketers, I came across the following: “I am working on a marketing concept where I will be able to reach directly 20,000 people (mainly young adults and students) in a period of a month … How much is a company willing to pay for marketing with these figures?” One…

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Doublespeak Makes Prospects Sick

A silhouette of a man with two speech bubbles represents doublespeak, which can be confusing for everyone involved in a marketing deal.

I received a spam message last month from a guy who was selling exposure on his website. He told me he wanted to publish a “feature story” about my company. He added, “There is a symbolic fee for this.” A symbolic fee?! “What’s a ‘symbolic fee’?” I wrote. His reply: “It’s $85. Looking forward to…

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Five-Star List Building by a Burger Restaurant

A listbuiliding technique was implemented at a delicious burger restaurant in Clayton, Mo. Here's a pictures of a burger with juicy meat and lots of sauce.

Regular email newsletters are a great way for restaurants and other hang-out destinations to drive repeat business. That’s why we encourage our restaurant clients to devise creative ways to build their email lists. The more people you add to your list, the more repeat business you can drive. Five Star Burgers introduced a great list-building tactic at…

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Do Your Ads Belong in a Toilet?

An image of a urinal in a e marketing office in St. Louis

I stumbled across this question on an online marketing forum recently: “Anyone tried public toilet advertising? What was the output?” Eleven people responded. Half offered good “output” jokes. Example: “(The output was) piss poor.” Others offered serious, earnest responses… “We did public toilet advertising … and it was amazingly successful.” “Personally I think it is…

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