Direct Mail Marketing Secrets From The Big Boys
Tweet Yes, I publish posts as “The Direct Mail Man,” so it’s hard not to be biased about direct mail marketing. At the risk of boring you, I usually try to avoid publishing posts that gush on about the value of direct mail marketing. However, when Forbes magazine publishes an article highlighting the value of direct mail marketing, and an international automotive giant like Nissan identifies direct mail marketing as essential to its marketing strategy, it’s nearly impossible for me to keep quiet. Hmmm, is it possible that large companies like Nissan and Google (Yes, even Google uses direct mail-take a look at my recent post here ) know a thing or two that could benefit direct mail marketers at smaller organizations? The answer is ” yes .” Why do large companies invest money in direct mail marketing, and what’s the secret to their success? 1) Integrate : In a given day, you will check your e-mail, access your social media accounts and check your snail mail. Your typical customers and prospects are no different. This means that you cannot rely on a single-marketing channel. Twitter , Facebook and now even Pinterest are flavor of the day marketing. I’m not suggesting that they are irrelevant, but it’s a crime when businesses and nonprofits cannibalize e-mail marketing and direct mail marketing in favor of social media marketing. The Forbes article referenced above confirms that e-mail and direct mail still provide the best return on investment for your marketing dollars. If you read my blog at all, you’ll know that I am a huge fan of multi-channel marketing. This is particularly true about the integration of e-mail marketing and direct mail . Since e-mail marketing is permission-based, direct mail is the perfect partner to drive people to sign up for your e-mail marketing campaign. QR Codes also provide a simple and free way to integrate traditional marketing with online content. Smart marketers aren’t leveraging direct mail marketing instead of other channels, they’re leveraging it in addition to other marketing channels. Where is direct mail in your marketing mix? Have you fallen victim to the flavor of the day? 2) Target & Commit : My most-successful customers mail with me repeatedly -no, this isn’t because they love spending money on marketing. It’s because they recognize that marketing is an investment, and that unless you’re selling 99 cent tacos, it’s very difficult to convert a prospect to a client with a single touch using any marketing channel. Repeat communication is critical, but it will achieve nothing if you’re not targeting the right audience and sharing a relevant message or offer. In its direct mail marketing, Nissan has identified two completely different sub-sets, and it promotes not only different vehicles to the different subsets, but it also promotes different car features that are more relevant to each specific subset. We all know that our marketing should be all about our prospects and customers and not all about us, but sometimes we forget. You can’t afford to forget. 3) Personalize : Okay, so when I say “personalize,” you’re thinking about addressing customers and prospects by name, but that’s just the simplest form of personalization-you’re really just scratching the surface. Nissan actually recognizes where people are in their automobile purchase cycle and they adapt their marketing accordingly. This may sound outrageously complex for smaller organizations, but marketing tools like PURLS make it cost-effective to include hyper-personal communication in your direct mail marketing. Fear not! If figuring out how to do the more advanced personalization is giving you heartburn, then you can just start by incorporating the first name of your prospects and customers in your marketing. As a first-hand example, my e-mail open rate doubled and remained there, when I started personalizing the subject line of my e-mail marketing campaigns. I’ve witnessed similar success with my client’s personalized marketing campaigns. So if simply using a first name can have such a dramatic effect on response, imagine what an even more personalized marketing piece can achieve. If you’re on-board with this, but can’t figure out where to get started, I sure hope you’ll contact me because we specialize in the development and production of personalized marketing campaigns. Smile because now you can market like the big boys! • Social media may be the flavor of the day, but your marketing isn’t going to generate big-time returns if you stick with a single channel; integration is vital. • Make sure that your product or service is always relevant to your target audience; otherwise you’re just throwing crap against a wall and seeing what sticks. • When you go to the trouble of targeting the right audience, never give up after a single attempt. Successful marketing requires perseverance. • Make your marketing personal. The more personal it is, the more attention your product or offer will receive. Happy marketing! Invest your limited dollars wisely. Like what you’re reading? Have you signed up for my weekly e-newsletter yet or are you following my blog’s rss feed ? How do you incorporate direct mail in your marketing mix? Please share your comments below.