Utilizing The Val-Pacs Coupon Mailer for Evangelism
By Alex Bruce Dicker
I am completely convinced that Val-pacs advertising will produce rewarding results. Skeptics may say, “We have tried this approach and it didn’t work for us.” Since there are different ways of using the Val-pacs, they must be implemented correctly to work.
If done appropriately the Val-pacs system will reach interested people; lots and lots of interested people. On an average, they usually are distributed to approximately ten thousand homes and sometimes even more. In addition, it is a great promotional tool because it will save you time, leg work and much running around.
Val-pacs can be cost efficient and at the same time be effectively used to draw new visitors to your church.
P T Barnum once said, “Without PROMOTION, something terrible happens… NOTHING!!!”
This quote is rather simple, but it is so remarkably insightful and genuinely profound and churches need to continuously be reminded of this.
If you do not advertise, nobody will know you are there. If you do not toot your own horn, nobody is going find you. If you do not do it, it is very unlikely that someone else will do it for you. A week should not go by that your church is not seen or heard of by your community somehow, somewhere!
The Val-pacs coupon can be of great help when it comes to the promotion of your church.
If you are not already familiar with Val-pacs, let me explain to you what they are. Usually the businesses in your area will mail out advertising coupons. What the Val-pacs system does is promote a number of different businesses, or any-body that so desires, by stuffing numerous different coupons from many different businesses in an envelope and then mailing them out to every home in your city. Many times the coupons offer special discounts or small free gifts, etc. For example, the coupon may state if they buy a meal, they will get a second meal for free.
The purpose of the coupon is to reach and acquaint people in the community with the services or what a business has to offer them.
In order for Val-pacs coupon to have the greatest impact, these seven elements must be present.
1 An attention-compelling headline. The headline acquaints individuals with what you are offering. It must be compelling enough to get them to read further.
2 It must communicate plainly what you have to offer. Once the headline gets a person’s attention, the wording on the coupon must clearly state any other information you are trying to convey in a concise manner.
3 It must be written with enthusiasm. It should also sound friendly and personable.
4 It must clearly state they will receive a FREE giveaway item if they respond. Free is one of the most attention-compelling words in the English language. Since it is so compelling it is important to use it when advertising using a Val-pacs coupon. The truth is, people will respond if you offer a free item to them. The item that should be given is one that would be beneficial to them. Although a Bible is a good idea and is definitely beneficial, I would recommend against giving it as the free giveaway item. Why? Every church in town already does that. Giving a Bible away is very common. It is much better to present them with something different. What should be given away? Give them Biblical truths presented differently such as an audio tape, explaining the five steps to real peace, joy and happiness. Or you can give them a special soul-searching message recently preached and taped at your church. You can also give them a tape of the service they attended that day. Another good giveaway could be a free meal at a local restaurant. There are many different giveaways one can use, but make sure it is something that will impress them.
5 The coupon should state that it is limited time offer. Why is this important? By stating they must redeem the coupon by a certain date or it will expire, creates an urgency to respond to the offer or they miss out on the offer. It also serves to help eliminate anyone not seriously interested and encourage those, who really want to know more, to respond. What you do not want is to just provide free gifts to uninterested, supposedly already saved people who would never revisit your church again. There are people asking God for help that will respond. They are looking for the answer to their situations. They recognize their need and would respond. The limited time offer keeps them from waiting until later to respond.
6 It is very important to provide a phone number they can call and an address they can write and respond to.
7 Use a visual. A visual helps to lead the individual along in the reading of the coupon. It is not recommended to use a picture of the Pastor at this point. It is better to use a picture that ties everything that you are attempting to communicate together. Combine whatever it is you are promoting with a picture relaying excitement, enjoyment or a good feeling. Families laughing or children playing together may be some good choices. Utilize the senses to help promote a feeling of good will, peace or happiness.
The Val-pacs message should be repeated several times a year. I would recommend, depending on finances, once in the spring, once in the summer and one more time in the fall season.
In summary, I would like to leave you with a few closing remarks that will hopefully motivate you to utilize not only the Val-pacs coupons but all of the Marketing and Advertising ideas in this manual.
Dr. Orrison Swett Marden:
“A lobster when left high and dry among the rocks, has not instinct and energy enough to work his way back to the sea, but waits for the sea to come to him. If it does not come, he remains where he is and dies, although the slightest effort would enable him to reach the waves, which are perhaps within a yard of him. The world is full of human lobsters: Men stranded on the rocks of indecision and procrastination, who, instead of putting forth their own energies, are waiting for some grand billow of good fortune to set them afloat.”