You have to market to stay ahead in business today.
Even if you live in a small community, marketing plays a big role in
making your business creditable. Consumers today are subjected to
anywhere from 1,800 - 3,000 advertising messages per day. With that
large of a statistic, it is no longer viable to rely only on
marketing is the best way to build a reputation, but if a competitor's
marketing message comes along that hits your consumers' "buttons," they
may be likely to leave your business in search for a better price,
closer location, or just plain curiosity.
have to continually market to let people know you exist so they will
not forget about you. The way you do it may vary depending on your type
of business, but there is one marketing avenue that will get you an
excellent return on investment, if done right.
||A clear, bold headline.
||A graphic that supports the message.
The graphic should be easy to understand and add to the message the headline is trying to convey.
||Color that pops.
Make the headline and other text stand out by using a color that stands out from the background color.
lead into text.
you have a couple of paragraphs of text with no lead in, there's
nothing to entice people to actually read the copy. A subhead will give
people a place to start reading.
||Benefits, benefits, benefits.
One of the biggest errors people make in advertising is stating features, rather than benefits.
An offer is always a good idea and should represent a specific reason to call now, such as "Limited supply".
name and logo.
Although this needs to be on the mailer, it shouldn't overshadow the offer. Customers care most about what you can do for them.
||Call to action.
prospects exactly what you want them to do. "Call today for more
information" or "See us online" are two of the most common desired
Provide your name, phone number, and web address directly following the call to action.
return address ensures you'll get returned mail from the post office
and sends a message that you're an established professional.
A survey by the International Communication Research concluded that people prefer receiving messages by direct mail.
73% of respondents said that they prefer receiving new product announcements by mail, versus 18% for email.
Fewer people trash unsolicited direct mail when compared to email, 31% to 53% respectively.
mail coupled with community networking and involvement, and some free
internet listings on local search engines, can markedly increase your
business. With that being said, you need to know how to do it right.
Do it right
you need to know the power of repetition. If location is the mantra of
real estate success, then repetition is the mantra for promotional
repeated mailings are the way to create big, measurable results. When
you mail every 30 days for a year, you will cause a dramatic growth in
direct mail, you can send your message to a targeted group of prospects
or to your existing customers for only 25 to 30 cents each, including
you put out a blast of communication you will get inflow ? prospects,
customers calling or coming in, and buying. Yes, if you deliver a good
product you will get some business from referrals, some. But you want
that blast repeated over and over and over to get the inflow that it
will generate consistently. Consistency is where prediction comes in.
Say you send out 5,000 postcards one month:
?Out of that 5,000, 150 hang onto your postcard.
?Out of that 5,000, so many call the 1st week.
?Out of that 5,000, so many call the 2nd week.
?Out of that 5,000, so many call the next month.
is a dwindling inflow from that first mailing and therefore can give a
false impression of what occurs from one mailing. Someone sends out a
postcard and says, "I only got four responses from my mailing!" But
there is a whole dynamic that is going on that is continuing from that
one mailing, way after the person who sent the mailing expects things
to happen. Every month you send out 5,000 postcards you have the
scenario happening above.
it is going to snowball because it's coming in from all different
places! You are really putting your communication out there
consistently, in a big way, and you are going to get consistent and
any local community activities that you do to help get your name out
there will get you even more results if you have a targeted and
consistent direct mail campaign running.
Know your target market
try and sell beer to the Temperance Society or real estate to people
who cannot afford it. You have to target your direct mail marketing
mailing list is a key factor in a successful small business direct mail
marketing campaign. The right list targets people who want your product
or service. The wrong list fails to target people who would want to buy
from you. Sent to the wrong list, your mailing will be treated as 'junk
should also look for local community venues that cater to your target
market. Register to speak at their functions; sponsor some of their
charity activities; see how you can help them, their children, and
their churches or organizations. But don't do this type of activity
only to get the business ? it will not ring true and you might get a
reputation as a fake. Find some worthy cause to get behind and help.
This will increase the effectiveness of your direct mail efforts.
Design your direct mail pieces to your target market
A good design and a good message go a long way to making your direct mail piece a hit.
design should reflect your business/franchise, be relevant to who you
are marketing to, and should include an offer to create an immediate
call to action. The graphic and headline is what ultimately prompts
your prospect to turn your card over and read your message, so make
sure they communicate to your target audience.
want your direct mail to end up in the trash with the rest of the
unread mail? These 10 tips will help you get the results you want:
Be consistent and commit
One thing about marketing is that you have to commit.
rarely get multiple postcards from a business. Yet, it is such a
brilliant idea. When I receive multiple postcards, I take a look. I
think, "Hmmm, these guys are still contacting me." That shows
persistence, it shows credibility.
need to hit your prospects with different communication about the same
thing, or hit them with different products with the same look and feel,
or both. The rest will come.
you have to be consistently in the community speaking, helping,
contributing, networking, and shaking hands. But you cannot rely on
this alone. Direct mail is a very creditable marketing medium and the
two go hand in hand. The business owner who sends direct mail to his
target market and sponsors their kids' little league baseball team is
going to get more business than the business owner that only relies on
word of mouth. People are bombarded with messages today ? you have to
constantly remind them who you are, where you are, and what you can do
for them. You have to drive customers to your business.
you are building with a marketing and community involvement/networking
is credibility. You are building your business through communication.
You are communicating consistently, so much that people will believe
you (credibility) and they will respond; they will come, they will buy.
Source: Reprinted from Mailing Systems Technology February 2008 newsletter.
Joy Gendusa is the owner of PostcardMania.