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There are any number of ways to approach marketing. How Stu Heinecke does it, though, is unique. Stu is the author of How To Get A Meeting with Anyone and a Wall Street Journal cartoonist and he started his own company using what he called contact marketing. By using cartoons in direct mailing campaigns, Stu proved that people connected to and responded to those mailers, and when he used that method to find clients, he walked away with a 100% conversion rate — unheard of in the direct mail world. On this episode of Marketing Trends, Stu tells his story and discusses his books, explains how marketing has evolved through the years.

3 Takeaways:

Cartoons offer an opportunity to sell something in one fram

– The challenge of connecting comes down to humanizing the interaction

– Creating value and breaking through to someone is all about providing relevance

Key Quotes:

“I love cartoons, but it turns out everybody does. And it turns out they’re really very powerful devices for marketing because they stand out.”

“Everything is supposed to be memorable and get your attention, and cartoons are these simple little drawings and a caption that do that. But the other thing is that, you know, it’s a form of humor… I’ve theorized that what humor really is is truth being revealed in a twist. Well, that’s really useful from a marketing standpoint as well.” 

“In sales, we’re all trying to connect with each other relative to a business in general and there’s too much of it. And that’s made even tougher with all the social media streams. It’s just this deluge of people who want to get in touch and sell you stuff. So it’s the humanizing that becomes the challenge. It actually always has been, trying to humanize yourself to someone you don’t know. So they go, ‘Wow, that’s really cool.’ In fact, the second part is you really want them to be saying to themselves or just their reaction should be, ‘Man, I love the way this person thinks we’ve got to meet.’”

“We’re always hearing 1% in direct mail is a good response rate and more importantly, we hear 100% response rates are impossible. And here I am, I had a campaign that got 100%response. It was a small campaign, but that didn’t matter, the outcome of all of that was enormous. Look at the ROI. I spent $100 and made millions. It’s a crazy set of metrics.”

“These are the tools that can actually help the salespeople bridge that gap. They’re told which accounts to go after and what the accounts are, but they don’t know them yet. And so what are they going to do to bridge that gap? Contact marketing is the bridge to that gap.”


Stu Heinecke is a Wall Street Journal cartoonist, Hall of Fame-nominated marketer and author. Heinecke discovered the magic of “Contact Marketing” early in his career when he launched a Contact Campaign to just two dozen Vice Presidents and Directors of Circulation at the big Manhattan-based magazine publishers. That tiny $100 investment resulted in a 100% response rate, launched his enterprise and brought in millions of dollars worth of business. Heinecke is the host and author of the How To Get A Meeting with Anyone book, podcast, and blog, and founder and president of Contact, a Contact Marketing agency, and co-founder of, a coalition of famed cartoonists dedicated to raising funds for charity, while raising the profile of the cartooning art form.

Marketing Trends podcast is brought to you by Salesforce. Discover marketing built on the world’s number one CRM: Salesforce. Put your customer at the center of every interaction. Automate engagement with each customer. And build your marketing strategy around the entire customer journey. Salesforce. We bring marketing and engagement together. Learn more at 

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