Direct mail marketers can learn a lot from charities that "get it right" with their fundraising direct mail. Charities have learnt what it takes to implement a successful fundraising direct mail campaign and these tried and tested approaches work just as well for marketers.
Your Time to Strike
Right now, people's letterboxes are relatively empty and free of direct mail from your competitors. Many emails are deleted without a thought, due to the vast volume that appears every day. Physical direct mail can stand out from this clutter, and will not be so readily disposed of.
Target the Right Audience
Unless you are confident that your list is up to date and includes the correct contact names, it's worth using the services of a reputable list broker. This will save money in the long-run, as mail sent to incorrect names or addresses won't be received by anyone.
Make your reader feel important. Address the individual by name, but also make the content relevant to your targets. Write about them and how your offer will benefit them specifically.
Include a Call to Action
Include a call to action and repeat it by way of a post script. Give your offer a sense of urgency with a deadline.
Give your reader all possible response options. Apart from the obvious telephone number, email address and web address, add a QR code, or even an embedded augmented reality image for your younger or tech savvy audience.
Just make sure that all response avenues work as they should, before wasting any money.
Less is More
Use colours and fonts that are easy on the eye and don't baffle your audience with too many images or a wall of text. Most of us have a limited attention span as a result of being constantly bombarded with advertising from all sources. Entertain them with your message in as few words as is necessary.
Share Your Passion
You obviously have a passion for your business, but make sure that it is portrayed in your content. Don't forget to blow your own trumpet. Shout about the people that like you.
Use envelopes in such a way that your targets won't be able to resist opening. There are many options, but a handwritten address and a postage stamp will increase your chances, simply because it's more personal and looks less like an industrial scale mailshot.
Test different sizes, shapes and materials. You could include a free gift, the bulkiness should intrigue your reader enough to make them open the pack. Remember to include a reply card or envelope, to increase chances of getting a reply.
Test a new idea on a small scale, before a full-scale launch. It saves time, money and effort.
Embrace the potential that direct mail has to engage all of your reader's senses, over any other form of marketing. Recent studies have shown that people find that reading printed material is relaxing and offers them a break from their usual fast-paced lives.
In fact, people often read it when they are completely away from work, in a quiet place, where it will get their undivided focus. When writing a new article, I print out my draft and take it away with me. I then read it at a quiet time to give it my sustained attention.
Follow-up the same audience with new creative mailings, to raise brand awareness.
There is no need to ditch your online marketing campaigns, but you will be missing out if you leave direct mail out of the mix. The mail piece itself can be an instant integrated link from offline to online, by way of a QR code or embedded augmented reality.
There has never been a better time to embrace the possibilities that direct mail provides. Go on, seize the day!
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