Direct mail is often considered the black sheep of the marketing family, and for all the wrong reasons. There is a common misconception with business owners that direct mail isn’t effective in a digital era, but that is incorrect. Direct mail has many attributes that make it an extremely useful marketing tool. Surveys indicate that people perceive direct mail as authentic, personal, and trustworthy — all of which are hard to portray via digital marketing campaigns. Also, if your target audience is not spending time online, direct mail is certainly a worthy marketing option.
Not sure how to implement an effective DM campaign? Here are our eight success secrets:
1) Segment and target.
Segmentation makes direct mail an effective marketing approach. Using criteria such as gender, age, income, household size, and education can lead to high levels of targeting, which means your message will reach the right audience. Without targeting, you will not experience a good return.
2) Figure out what works and what doesn’t.
Look inside your mailbox. How do you feel about the mail you have? Certain visual elements can make all the difference when it comes to an effective mail piece. Shuffle through your mail and see what you consider to be “junk.” Now, do the opposite: what stands out?
3) Choose the appropriate medium.
Find what you want to deliver your message on. Postcard or Letter? Expensive or inexpensive paper? Consider your audience and how you want your business portrayed. You are giving your audience a glimpse inside your company so make a good first impression.
4) Provide truthful information.
Don’t assume that your audience knows everything about your business. Use compelling imagery and headlines to draw them in and use the body to inform. Avoid using tag lines like “FREE MONEY,” because it only makes people more skeptical. Plus, the people who buy into it will come looking for free money!
5) Spend some time on the design.
Make your DM piece aesthetically pleasing. Consider fonts, images, and colors. Not sure which colors? Consider how it may make your audience feel. Believe it or not, the color has a lot to do with the way your audience will react.
6) Make it personal.
Try to personalize your DM piece to the best of your ability. Would you be more willing to read a mail piece that says “Dear Current Resident” or “Dear [Your Name]?”
7) Use call to action.
If you don’t have a CTA, then you are just boosting brand awareness. Make sure you know what you are asking from your audience. Do you want your audience to call? Provide the phone number. Do you want people to visit your website and digital platforms? List your company website and social media URLs.
8) Don’t just dip your toes in.
Don’t expect a line out your door after one campaign. Sending only 300 postcards won’t get you the return you seek. Figure out what worked and re-design your strategy if you have to. You’ll get it right.