We’ve seen an increase in companies that are returning to use direct mail as an integral part of their B2B lead generation campaigns. More and more, companies are realizing that email is becoming white noise and that to break through the clutter, organizations need to invest more in understanding their audience and how they reach them. In three recent campaigns with multiple clients, we’ve seen a 12% lift in response rates by incorporating the use of letters and other mailers to supplement our email communications.
The trend, speaks to the over utilization of email and the ease with which it can be discarded (i.e. ignored or deleted), as well as the strength of direct mail to capture users attention. Making this work however, requires more than a cursory attempt to communicate with your audience. A 5” x 7 “ postcard does little to inspire active engagement. For help making direct mail work in your marketing plans, follow these guidelines:
Make it Personal
This is good advice for all your marketing programs. Don’t blast your entire audience with the exact same message. Making it meaningful to the recipient is the key. Incorporate variable data whenever possible and pick critical elements that your audience will clearly recognize as pertinent to them.
Unlike email, direct mail does have a variable cost, so taking the time to evaluate your database and build out a quality list of potential targets is a must. Choosing the appropriate size list is requires a delicate balance between potential results and economies of scale. If you’re uncertain as to your audience interest, erring on the side of smaller is a good way to reduce your costs while you test your potential results. Then you can scale up using the same creative once you’re confident your message is being received.
Set Realistic Goals
Understand what you are asking of your audience, make it easy for them to respond and put yourself in their shoes. If you’re unwilling to take the next steps presented by your direct mail piece, or worse, don’t immediately know what they should be, go back to the drawing board and revise your direct mail piece until it is clear.
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Make it Stand Out
Dimensional mail is the BOMB. People like it and it captures attention. Consider using boxes or bumpy envelopes to gain someone’s attention and then keep it with your messaging and creative.
Depending on your offer or service, your copy and creative may be enough to inspire action, but more often than not, you’ll need to reinforce your message with other content. Enhancing your promotion with a Personalized URLs (Purls) or personal landing pages is a great way to build upon a message and further engage your audience.
The key to making direct mail work is to get your prospects reading and engaged with your company or organization. Once you have them on the hook, keep them interested with more information and resources that follow these same goals. Repeating this marketing process across your marketing programs will help you maximize your response rate and ROI.