Local businesses are turning to direct mail to find and to keep customers. In fact, according to BIA/Kelsey, a research and advisory firm , in 2016 direct mail will constitute 25.6 percent of local-market ad spending (out of $146.6 billion). That’s certainly encouraging, but there are still steps to take to make sure direct-marketing messages are effectively delivered. Here are some basic tips to always keep handy:
Some marketers think, in the limited space of direct-mail piece, they have to list all the possible features of interest of customers. All the feature lists in the world, however, are useless if the benefits of the product or service are not obvious. For example, an HVAC company promoting air-duct cleaning should emphasize the health benefits of clean air.
Local businesses often provide services the customer could do themselves - like oil changes - but can’t or won’t. This where a factory-trained certification or unique process comes in. If there’s something like a “10-point safety check” on each oil change, then mention that.
Every car owner knows they ought to get their oil changed, but do they know why? This where sticker or label reminder on the piece may be useful to convey a certification or seal of approval.
Direct mail is the ideal way to communicate expertise and authority. A well-designed brochure outlining the entire “how-to” process of a complicated service will not only convey authority in the field, but also increase the customers’ confidence and trust.
Every business has a natural buying cycle; deliver your direct-mail pieces in time to leverage seasonal and holiday opportunities. Marketers are creative people, but there are times to brainstorm and times to follow a plan. When it comes to direct mail, a well-designed and executed piece with a simple offer can be more effective than a wildly creative offering that arrives at the wrong time. For local businesses, direct-mail marketing is a proven tool to drive traffic, to retain current customers and to reengage former customers. By Mark Pageau, vice president, sales and marketing, Darwill By Mark Pageau, vice president, sales and marketing email: email@example.com Twitter: mpageau