Rain, Snow, Sleet or Hail—Reach Your Clients & Prospects With Direct Mail
There’s no doubt that face-to-face marketing and meetings are on the downturn these days. And, while a virtual outreach can provide some degree of success in staying relevant in your customer’s eyes, there’s another effective way to connect with your clients and prospects—by using direct mail.
Here are some recent statistics on direct mail:
• The average mail-out campaign is 3,500-5,000 pieces.
• Response rates are on the incline, rising from 1-3% a few years back to 4.9%-9% in the past few months.
• Advertising cards, catalogs or flyers made 31% of baby boomers purchase a product or service.
• Direct mail is an excellent way to introduce people to your services. Consumers claim that they are 46% more likely to respond to an offer from a familiar company.
• Currently, direct mail has a higher-response rate than digital marketing, so now is an excellent time to employ this method to reach new customers.
• Print advertising (8%) and direct mail (4-9%) are listed among the top sources for generating sales and cultivating leads.
• 70% of Americans think that direct mail is more personal than internet advertising.
Read on for some great info and tips for planning and executing a successful direct mail campaign:
1. Establish A Goal For Your Campaign
What are you hoping to accomplish with your direct mail campaign? Whether it’s expressing gratitude to existing clients for past business, or casting the net for new customers, defining the objective for the campaign is the perfect place to start.
2. Outline Your Target Audience & Number of Pieces You’ll Mail
Planning a direct mail campaign to your existing clients is fairly easy since you already have a relationship with them and should possess their contact information.
Mailing to prospective customers is a little more involved. Most mailing lists are formatted on an Excel spreadsheet. Whether you’re purchasing a list of addresses from a mailing service, or compiling this information yourself, it’s important to insure that all of the data is complete. Using a mailing service to provide addresses can be beneficial as they are able to refine their databases to hone in on:
• Types of businesses (for commercial mail-outs),
• Location (City, State, Zip Codes, etc),
• Household Income (if residential mail-out),
• New businesses,
• Size of businesses (or households),
• and, much more
3. Determine What You’ll Send
Gone are the days when companies send letters stuffed into envelopes for direct mail. The likelihood of this type of piece being opened (much less read) by the recipient is low. A better bet would be a two-sided, full-color postcard. Not only is this a more economical way to go, the per piece postage, ink-jetted directly on the postcard will be less than a letter.
For a more successful result, consider a postcard with a small, branded gift attached to it. Flat items such as cleaning cloths, computer camera covers and magnets can be affixed to the piece. This will run a little higher on postage and overall investment for your direct mail project, but provides the benefit of residual value.
If you want to “pull out all the stops”, and your budget allows it, a mailer-box with a gift and a personal note signed by you and/or your team makes a lasting impression, and again, has residual value. This type of mailer would be something you’d send to existing clients and/or your “hotter” prospects.
Whatever you send, it’s a good idea to enlist the help of a professional artist to assist with the design of the piece. A specific call to action (ie: a drawing/prize or special discount on your services) will help with the response rate and also allow you to specifically track traffic generated by the piece. A great way to do this is to place: "Mention This Mailer & Receive . . ." Be sure to include an “act-by” date so that there is urgency to respond.
Use high-resolution images (before and after examples are good) and bullet points to detail your services. Include any relevant affiliations with professional organizations and be sure your contract information is clear.
Once your direct mail piece is sent, you’ll want to track its progress and success. You should receive Post Office verifications showing that your mailer did indeed get sent with the number of pieces and postage clearly indicated. Here are some additional suggestions to reinforce your direct mail project’s effectiveness:
• Promote the mail-out on social media
• Email the recipients and let them know to expect to receive the piece in the mail
• You, or someone on your team can call your existing clients and make sure they’ve received the mailer, especially if you’ve included a gift item or are offering a. special prize for responding.
• Track every response and follow up on each one.
• Thank every person who responds and ask them what you can help them with right now.
A couple of last thoughts—remember: It’s important to do something different that will make your piece standout and receive attention. Be sure that everyone on your team is aware of your company’s direct mail campaign and are prepared to discuss it with clients and prospects. Try to get your team excited about it.
A well-planned and executed direct mail campaign can yield solid results for your business. Committing yourself and your team to being a part of its success from start to finish will make the difference on your R.O.I. and potential increase in sales.
Need help with your next direct mail campaign?
Call or email:
Monica E. Simmons
972-550-1880 ext. 215