There are three basic elements that determine the success of a direct mail campaign: the list, the offer and the creative. In order to generate more response from your mail pieces you need to look at all three.
Here are the secrets you need to know:
- Target your list – There is no factor more important to the success of your mailing than the list. The quality of the mailing list represents at least 40% of your campaign’s success. How good is your list?
- Target recipients to match your offer – Take a look at your data, what have people purchased from you before? What can you offer them now based on that purchase history? If you don’t have a lot of information in your data you can apply predictive list models to target a smaller, more specific audience.
- Keep your list up-to-date – This is more than just keeping addresses current, it also includes making sure that all the purchase history is current as well as any other information you are capturing. Would you like to know more? Download the full set of information at Best Ways To Keep Your Data Clean
- Make a compelling offer – It’s the basic driver of direct mail response. You can test a few different wording options to see what works best for your audience. Offer a discount, free gift or rebate. If your offer is powerful, consider including it in your headline. Put a time limit on the offer to motivate the reader to respond quickly. Use the word “free.”
- Emphasize benefits, not features – People want to know “What’s in it for me?”, not what’s in your product or service. Features are what your product has. Benefits are how it improves your life. SPF 50 is a feature of sunscreen. Helps prevent skin cancer is the benefit. As an old ad man once said, “Sell the sizzle, not the steak.”
- Make it personal – Speak directly to your customer with a relevant direct mail message. A florist sends birthday and anniversary reminders to its customers. A shoe retailer notifies a customer about a new model of running shoe, an upgrade to what she has purchased before. These efforts turn your mail into a customer service tool. And your customers want service. Variable data printing provides a tool for customizing every mail piece with personalized messages and images.
- Add a P.S. to a letter – Readers often read the P.S. before the body of a letter. This makes the P.S. a good place to reiterate the offer or main benefit. Make your P.S. compelling.
- Give the reader multiple ways to respond – Include a phone number, email, text number, website and anything else you have available. Make them easy to find. Consider including a business reply card. Even in this day when people may respond by telephone and internet, business reply cards improve response rates. Their very presence communicates that a response is requested.
- Tell people what you want them to do – Make it clear how you want the reader to respond. Prompt them to call, come in, visit your website, send in a reply card, or whatever your objective is.
- Change the size – If you’ve always had reasonable success with a 5.5 x 8.5 postcard, test a 6 x 11 card and see if it catches more attention. What it cost you in dollars, you may get back in response. We would recommend staying in the letter postage rate size category to keep your postage costs down. If you need help with that contact us.
- Mail more frequently – If you are mailing four times a year, test a series of six mailings. It keeps you in front of customers more often and gives you more opportunities to get a response. Tests have shown that a second mailing of the same piece to the same list usually generates 50% of the response of the first mailing. Of course do not saturate them with mail; it will only have a negative effect.
Now you are ready to increase your direct mail responses. Only change one thing at a time in your mailing to make sure you know the results of the change. You can split your list in half and send one change to the first half and a different change to the other half. Are you ready to increase your results?
If you have any questions call us 619-448-6111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We are glad to help!