There is no denying that direct mail can be a powerful marketing approach. However, if you are launching a direct mail campaign for the first time, it can seem a little bit overwhelming and daunting. This is especially the case if you are running a small company and currently wearing a number of other hats! However, it does not need to be as scary as it first seems. To give you a helping hand, we have put together a ten-step process for you to follow. So, let’s take a look:
1. What are your objectives?
The first thing that you need to do is determine your objectives. You need to determine what you hope to achieve from your campaign. Are you hoping to attract new customers? Is there a new product or service you are excited about? Do you want your existing customers to come back more often?
2. Understand your audience
Next, you need to gather customer data. You need two types of data here: demographic information and psychographic information. The former includes gender, income, ethnicity, marital status, and age. Psychographic details add another layer on top of this. It tells you about your prospects’ attitudes, opinions, values, habits, and hobbies.
3. Create your mailing list
Once you know your customers and the goals you are aiming for, you need a mailing list so you can figure out how to reach them. Perhaps you already have an in-house list? You could also rent or buy a list, which is the option most business owners go down. Make sure you choose with care, as you want to reach the right people.
4. Put your message together
When you are putting together a message, you need to think about why your audience should care about your product or service. What sort of problem are you solving? Don’t make the mistake of telling people what you want them to hear, rather than considering what really matters to them.
5. Develop your offer
Think about how you are going to get people to respond quickly to your direct mail. Having a strong and well-timed incentive that is relevant to your ideal customers is imperative for higher response rates. You want to make sure that they are quickly enticed to take further action, for example, visit your store or website.
6. How and why should digital and print be integrated
Direct mail plays a huge role in marketing. You need to consider how your direct mail is going to be successfully linked to the digital world. The way that you do this depends on your business and the nature of it. From including QR codes to using personalised URLs, there are plenty of ways to go about it.
7. Put your actual mailpiece together
Now, let’s get to the good part. You need to put together your mailpiece. So, you need to decide on the mail type and format, as well as designing the mail and writing the content. You can work with a mailing house or you can make these decisions in-house and handle the design and content yourself.
8. Work with a printing company
You should now start the process of selecting a printer before you have finished the design of your direct mail piece. Get bids from three different printers, and try not to make your decision based on price alone. Make sure the company has a great reputation and find out how big their shop is so you can make certain you’re not going to run into problems.
9. Prepare your piece for the post office
The mailing process is a bit more complicated than it used to be if you wish to mail at bulk-mail prices. You need to carefully consider whether bulk mail is right for you. An established mailing house can often get the best bulk postage rates so ensure to enquire about the best way to post your mailshot.
10. Track your response rates and keep fine-tuning your campaign
Finally, direct mail marketing is a never-ending process. It is imperative to track your response rates so that you can polish your campaign. This is a vital part of the process, which should never be skipped or overlooked!
So there you have it: an insight into direct mail marketing and the steps that you should take. If you follow the steps that have been presented above, you will be able to put together an effective marketing campaign that reaches the heights you are aiming for.