How to Get Direct Mail to Work for You

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The digital era is definitely on the rise. Newspapers are slowly dying, and now people are wondering if direct mail is  dying along with it.

Though newspapers and direct mail are becoming less frequent, that doesn’t mean they don’t have a place in our world of advertising.

Here are some facts regarding direct mail:

BizReport 2010 reported that up to 85% of a business’ customer’s work or live in a five mile radius immediately around the business location.

The Little Book of Bigger Returns (Royal Mail Group Ltd 2011) found that mail boosted ROI (return on investment) by 20% when it was part of an integrated marketing campaign. Mail also increased the life of local ads by 44% and on line campaigns by 62%.

Also, although there IS a shift to digital marketing, that doesn’t make it the best option for all audiences. For example, only 45 percent of seniors have Internet service.  Additionally, Market Scan found that “the figure for available emails is around 20 percent of postal addresses, meaning that by avoiding direct mail you could be missing 80 percent of your target market.” People who  use email regularly have become experts at blocking out sales messages with filters.

A study done by the Direct Marketing Association found that the response rate for direct mail to an existing customer averages 3.4 percent, compared to 0.12 percent for email.

Here are 6 steps toward a successful direct mail campaign:

1) Send out coupons or discounts. Everyone loves a discount. Mention FREE or 50% off, their eyes gravitate towards it!

2) Target your market. Find a database that helps filter the results based on your needs. The more refined the search, the better.

3) Stand out! No one said direct mail has to look boring! Envelopes that catch the eye and engage the reader with customized teaser copy, customized letters that include handwritten notes, and vivid brochures/inserts that showcase further details capture and engage readers.

4) Never forget quality control. Proofread your copy. Look for grammatical errors, typos and inconsistencies. I know nothing turns me off more than a misspelled word in an ad that a business paid money for!

5) Integrate strategy. Leverage your message with other marketing initiatives; this helps to ensure brand cohesion. Consumers might need to hear your message five times before they act on it.  When your mailing is designed, be sure all pieces are consistent with your logo, background, font choice, colors. You want to be easy to recognize from one ad to another.

6) Don’t forget follow up. Turning people into loyal customers is going to take more than just one mail out; it’s going to be a continual process. Direct mail materials should have a call to action for people to connect with you online. When people visit your website, blog, or social media channels, they are asking to be kept in the loop on new information. This will help to keep them engaged beyond the mail delivery.

So just because direct mail isn’t the newest form of sending word out about your business, it doesn’t make it ineffective.

I would love to help you with this! Having one designer is helpful for a consistent look. I can create pieces, not only for a direct mail campaign, but also translate those ads into static digital ads or memes for your social media. Your direct mail can become flyers for networking events, postcards for mailing or for your front desk, inserts for newsletters.

Sound good? Contact me.

cheryl@socialballyhoo.com

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Posted in Tricks of the trade.

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