DMA: Data and Marketing Association
Consumer Help
Course Details

Offers, Value Propositions and Calls-to-Action

Create effective marketing offers that drive response rates across channels with free premiums, discounts, deadlines, and more

$99 non-members $149

This course is not currently being offered. If you are interested in learning about upcoming education opportunities, visit https://www.ana.net/schoolofmarketing

Course Description

Gain an important overview of online and offline direct marketing channels – from print to web to social media. Explore the move toward integrated marketing and discover how direct marketing strategies can be used effectively in all media. You’ll review best practices and techniques and learn how to apply them in a multichannel environment.


  • Defining and explaining the offer
  • Marketing goals guide the offer
  • What you need to know about the short- and long-term effects of offers
  • Creating the right offer
  • Strategies for creating offers to multiple target audience segments
  • Using games, contests, and sweepstakes to improve results
  • The effect of terms and conditions on offers


Ron Jacobs
President Jacobs & Clevenger Read Biography »

Defining and explaining the offer

  • The offer defined
  • Main elements of the offer
    • Product/service
    • Incentives
    • Price
    • Payment options
    • Guarantees
  • Features/benefits table
  • The role of terms and conditions on offers
    • A safeguard for marketers, not necessarily consumers
    • Concerns and regulation
    • Common sections – the scope of terms and conditions
    • Do consumers read terms and conditions?
    • Disclosures

Your Organization’s Marketing Objectives Guide the Offer

  • Examples of an organization’s marketing goals
  • Selling direct
  • Lead generation
  • Subscription or Membership
  • Drive traffic (e.g., to retail store or website)

Short- and Long-Term Effects of Offers on your Organizational Goals

  • How offers are tied to business objectives
  • Impact of goals on short-term and long-term offers
  • Three characteristics of effective short-term offers
  • How to build value with long-term offers


  • Creating the right offer for different situations
    • When to use hard offers vs. soft offers
    • The impact of free
    • Linking the offer to a call-to-action
    • Creating urgency
    • Creating compound offers
    • The power of referrals and “get-a-friend” offers
    • Merchandising the offer for better results
  • Six benchmarks for direct marketing offers
    • Planning for a robust multichannel offer
    • Is your offer specific or could it be applied to any product or service?
    • Is your offer valuable enough to motivate response?
    • Is your offer unique and something that will engage consumers?
    • Is your offer relevant and does it provide a real benefit for those responding? Is your offer believable or too good to be true?
    • Is your offer clear, simple, short, and precise…or, leave the customers guessing?
  • Strategies for creating offers to multiple target audience segments
    • Some offers are created for niche markets, while other offers stretch across broad
    • Some popular offers you should know
  • Using games, contests, sweepstakes to improve results
    • These are among the most engaging kinds of offers
    • How games and contests change behavior
    • The incentive is often more powerful than the product or service that has implications for loyalty and repurchase
    • Sweepstakes rules
  • Investigate ways to test your offers
    • Balancing the goal of response with profitability
    • Case study: American Marketing Association – Testing membership offers

Are you just dying to attend one of DMA’s Education seminars this year, but you’re not sure how to convince your boss to let you attend? Try one of these approaches.

  • “I know budgets are tight, but this is an opportunity that pays for itself instantly. A single tip from any of the DMA seminar could pay for the costs of the whole training. I’ll be learning secrets from practicing experts and industry thought leaders.”
  • “I’ll become more proficient in industry best practices, as well as on the latest tactics and technologies in today’s ever‐evolving marketing landscape. From direct mail to data governance, social media to email marketing; the DMA has all of our needs covered.”

I can share what I learned after the seminar; maybe host a brown‐bag working lunch and present the team with all the new techniques, strategies, and ideas I’ll come back with. Combining my own notes and ideas with the session handouts provided by the DMA, I’ll have plenty of inspiration and information to share when I return. Besides… this’ll allow everyone to get trained all for the price of sending just one person; and the team will definitely appreciate the opportunity to find out about the latest strategies used by many of our competitors today.

Still presenting itself as a hard sell? Inform your boss that your course can go on their accomplishments at the end of the year for their review: “Trained staff to improve results!” This is a win/win.

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