Make Direct Mail Work For You
When developing a direct marketing program, there are a number of issues you should consider:
The Direct Mail List.
Direct marketers often cite the 60-30-10 Rule – that 60% of your mail success depends on the list, 30% on the offer and only 10% on the creativity. That's why researching and defining your market is critical.
When developing your list, you should consider two criteria:
Customer lists. Your greatest potential for new sales lies with your existing customers. You want to be sure your customers know about all the services or products you offer and become consistent buyers. Be sure your list is up to date and includes current names, titles and addresses. Eliminate duplicates to sure you are sending only to the likely decision makers for your products, services or offers.
Your customer list also serves as a data tool to help you develop a customer profile and target audience for use in selecting purchased lists.
Purchased lists. There are thousands of lists available for direct marketers, which you can select based on interest categories, geographics, demographics, psychographics and other areas. Working with your customer profile, a professional list broker will develop detailed list recommendations segmented by such criteria as company size, types of products, SIC codes, titles, purchasing history and much more.
The Direct Mail Program.
Mail multiple times. A good mail program contacts your target audience multiple times each year. The frequency of your mailings depends on your product or service, but do not assume that a single mailing will generate the response you want.
Follow up. Establish a solid follow up program for your direct mail, whether in terms of fulfillment or lead generation. A well-planned telemarketing follow up program, for example, can be very effective if timed to coincide shortly after prospects receive your mail.
Vary the messages. Be sure that each mailing contains different messages, themes, and/or offers, while still building your brand image. One of the keys to direct marketing is selling benefits, not features. Focus on your target audience, letting them know how your product or service will benefit them.
Measure response. No one approach works best with each target audience. Test your response with specific messages, offers, packages, etc. and then tailor future mailings based on the best return results.