Most marketers have checklist to accomplish projects, from determining the objectives, developing the creative, setting up the budget, and so forth. Sometimes, as they work through the checklist, however, direct mail marketers can miss a few key “secret sauce” elements that can mean the difference between average results and a successful campaign. For direct-mail pieces, that means making such an impression on the reader they open the piece and respond to the message. Here are some tried-and-true techniques to make direct mail resonate:
Consumers trust people more than they trust companies. That’s why celebrities have been pitching products since the beginning of radio and TV. Familiarity brings trust. In today’s digital age, however, buyers also want to learn from people just like them. Some marketers have begun incorporating reviews from Facebook, review sites and more to build trust. If you can’t afford a big-name celebrity, don’t worry. Add some comments or testimonials from your best customers to gain credibility.
Did you watch the Super Bowl ads this year? One thing marketers are doing is telling a story, not just providing a promotional message. Find a way to engage your customer by telling a story about your product or service. (Maybe even tie it into the testimonial.) Direct mail is uniquely suited for storytelling; for example, start the story on the envelope, and continue it inside. A well-crafted lead will engage the customer and bring them into your message.
Marketers are empowered by data and analytics to reach customers, but it’s the emotional impact that make the sale. After you’ve told the story in step #2, how can convey an emotional appeal to get the customer act? Non-profits often rely on emotional appeals to get donations but even for-profit companies are learning to do this. Silicon Valley marketer Guy Kawasaki wrote in his book “Rules of Revolutionaries” about the need for great products to evoke an emotional response. "You should strive to create something that some people will love rather than something everyone will merely like." The same goes for your marketing message. You’ve already done the work of segmenting your list, now go the next step by reaching those customers where they live. Look back on your past campaigns. Which ones brought results and which ones could be improved? Is there a way you can incorporate those three steps into one of those campaigns that need improvement? Let us know, we’ll be glad to help! By Mark Pageau, vice president, sales and marketing email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: mpageau