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on 25 January 2011
Having read the hype about Dan Kennedy I was looking forward to some brilliant insights to direct marketing and the copywriting that sits behind it. Unfortunately this book is more about the benefits of direct marketing, than how to do it. I feel like I was promised a Haynes Manual to help fix my car, but instead got a brochure on how great other people's cars are.

The bulk of the book is a series of case-studies where Dan's mates describe in very general language what they did, and how rich it made them, and how you can buy their course or newsletter or whatever. For example, the section titled "Systems for Every Marketer" consists of one chapter which tells us to 1) use technology, 2) consider a sale as part of a relationship, not the end-game, and 3)work smarter not harder. No mention of how to do these things (e.g. how to use the power of autoresponders, or webpage mouse tracking software) but coincidentally the author runs a company called "Automated Marketing Systems" which can do it all for you. All the chapters are in a similar vein.

The enclosed audio CD is a badly recorded series of excerpts from a seminar, again mostly hot air and upsells.

I guess if you are genuinely unaware of the difference between direct marketing and brand/vanity advertising then perhaps this book would be an eye-opener. And perhaps it would prick your curiosity to look for more useful books on how to do it.

But if you have already read a few good books on DM and copywriting then don't bother.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 8 December 2015
I wanted to like this book based on the title and my high regard for Dan Kennedy. I had expectations of adding it to my list of books I like my clients to read.

Too many businesses make basic marketing mistakes because "advertising media" salespeople and graphic designers like pretty marketing. To them it doesn't matter if it works - that is it makes more sales and profit - provided it looks good and is seen to help build the right image for the company. I expected this book to help break the image myth and to focus attention on the money issue. It doesn't do it enough. There are ten "No BS" rules which are useful but that is one chapter.

There is the usual stuff about market - message - media match which is the essence of effective marketing but it is not covered as well as in The Ultimate Marketing Plan also by Dan Kennedy.

That takes you to page 39. Then you run into the stuff from Dan Kennedy students and clients who have become the gurus in their own niche areas using direct marketing. In theory there is nothing wrong with the case studies but too often they are pitches for their own businesses. Some are much better than others in that they stir the emotions and you can imagine how you would respond if you were in the niche. Others are blatant promotions which don't hit home. Most of the chapters of No BS Direct Marketing end with samples of the campaigns but you need a magnifying glass to be able to read them.

I like the idea of showing how traditional businesses like dentists, chiropractors, mortgage brokers and retail can be transformed through the effective use of direct marketing but better quality control and editing was needed.

I'm grading it as a 3 star book. I am disappointed. There is some merit in reading it but I can't recommend it to anyone, unless you are an extreme Dan Kennedy addict, because there are much better direct marketing books around.

If you're a small business oner, you need to understand direct response marketing and effective copywriting. I recommend The Brain Audit: Why Customers Buy (And Why They Don't),The 24 Hour Marketing Miracle: The FIRST Marketing Book EVER to Be Backed Up By a 500% Money Back Guarantee (Value Mechanics) and two from the btter known marketing legends, Jay Abraham with Getting Everything You Can Out of All You've Got: 21 Ways You Can Out-Think, Out-Perform, and Out-Earn the Competition and Dan Kennedy's The Ultimate Marketing Plan: Target Your Audience! Get Out Your Message! Build Your Brand!.

About my book reviews - My goal is to help you to find the best business advice. I aim to be a tough reviewer because the main cost of a book is not the money to buy it but the time needed to read it and absorb the key messages. 3 stars is worthwhile.

Paul Simister, business coach
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on 19 October 2014
Some good advice, but rather dated in parts. More to do with pre-internet marketing days. Some internet stuff tagged in, but
the whole book needs to be thoroughly updated.
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on 14 April 2014
A great insight into a marketing geniuses mind, I thought I knew a lot about direct marketing until I read this book. This book will change the future of my business for sure
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on 28 January 2014
I don't need 20 words to say that all of Dan kennedys books are amazing.

Every page packed full of top quality business transforming material
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Dan has a way with words which some people may not take to but it is all solid advice based on real world experience. I have found this book to give me a new drive in my business. Worth the money many times over.
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on 3 March 2014
Excellent read for anyone looking to get some good knowledge about direct marketing. Would highly recommend this book to others
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on 5 November 2014
If you have read dans other books then do not get this it is filled with nothing but sales crap to his other books
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on 4 September 2014
Excellent book - as you would expect from Dan Kennedy.
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on 5 August 2016
Tells it as it is !!
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