Monthly Archives: August 2009
Remember, the purpose of your direct mail advertising campaign is to generate leads.
A good way to do this is to include a “Special Offer”. We call this your “Magnet”. A good magnet will attract new customers.
Try being creative. Many advertisers use the old “10% Off” approach. It may work, but it’s been over used and often the prospect doesn’t believe the discount is real.
Try adding value instead of a discount. Price your product competitively and then add more product or service for the same price. For example, a postcard for a carpet cleaner might say “3 Rooms Cleaned for $99 – Plus 1 Chair Cleaned FREE!” This is a “WIN, WIN OFFER”. He gets his full price for the carpet cleaning and lets the client know that he also offers upholstery cleaning – and after cleaning one chair the rest of the upholstery may look a bit dingy, which could lead to an additional sale.
The value added offer doesn’t always have to be free either. We’ve all been asked to “SUPER SIZE” our order at a fast food restaurant. That extra $1.99 for a larger fountain soda and a few extra french fries really adds up.
So take some time to think about the Magnet on your postcard. If you need some help, just give us a call and we’ll be happy to brain storm with you. Call 866-594-3069 M-F – 9-6 Eastern Time.
Using Direct Mail Advertising to send visitors to your website is a great idea, but have you given much thought as to what they will do when they get there?
Who should designed your website? A website consultant, a template on online, your nephew?
The answer is: YOU SHOULD DESIGN YOUR WEBSITE!
You don’t have to learn any complicated software. You can hire someone or ask a friend for assistance, but you should be in charge of the content.
The first step is to decide what you want your website to do. There are 3 main options to consider:
- A Brochure Online
- An Ad Online
- A Store Online
For most small businesses options 1 and 2 are the most practical and affordable. Most websites are set up as online brochures with information about products and services.
Using your website as an “Ad Online” is an overlooked concept that works very well. It’s a way to promote special offers on a regular basis without having to pay for newspaper or other advertising. You just have to get your customers trained to checkout the latest offers from time to time. Of course, the offers have to be strong or your clients won’t take the time to return.
We have just introduced an exciting new one page “Mini Website” that allows the site owner to easily update content and special offers. No software training is needed. Click the link below for more information:
To kick off our new web program we are offering a $50 discount on your next Direct Mail Campaign when you purchase a $99 Mini Website.
For more information call 1-866-594-3069.
The person who picks up the postcard from the mailbox will glance at it for just a few seconds before deciding to keep it or discard it.
One method used successfully on many postcards to pass “The Glance Test” is a powerful, comical or interesting headline.
Here are a few examples of Postcard Headlines:
RENT MY HUSBAND!
Used by a neighborhood handyman
LET YOUR NEIGHBOR CLEAN YOUR HOUSE!
Used by a cleaning service who was soliciting business in their own neighborhood
FREE LAWN CARE SERVICE!
Pay for 2 cuts at our regular low price and get the 3rd
NEVER PAINT YOUR HOUSE AGAIN!
Painter offers a new process guaranteed to last 50 years or more.
Have you got an example of a headline that works? Please reply to this post with your postcard headline idea.
I’ve seen lots of business people who are reluctant to include prices for their products or services on their postcard advertising. They give lots of reasons: I don’t want my competition to know my prices, I don’t want to scare off the prospect, my product or service has too many options to include a price, etc.
Direct Mail Advertising is not the same as directory advertising, like in the phone book. In a directory ad, the prospect has already decided that he needs your product or service and he is looking for someone to provide it. In a directory ad you want to include an entire “laundry list” of products and information about your company.
Direct Mail Advertising is different. In most cases the prospect isn’t thinking about your product or service. So we want to get his attention. Including a price on your postcard is a good way to do it.
Let’s take a painting contractor as an example. Which of the examples below do you think would work best?
A) PAINT YOUR HOUSE THIS WEEK AND SAVE 10%
B) PAINT YOUR HOUSE THIS WEEK AND SAVE $100
C) PAINT YOUR HOUSE THIS WEEK FOR ONLY $899 (plus paint)
Great response is not necessarily generated by a discount. In offers “A” & “B”, the prospect has no idea what the cost to paint a house is, so the discount is meaningless. Some homeowners have never hired a painter and therefore have no frame of reference for pricing. They may read between the lines and think they know the price, but their idea of the price may be too high or too low, not a good thing in either case. By including a price, the prospect may be surprised and have this reaction: ”I didn’t know I hiring a painter was so affordable. Painting the house is within my budget. I’m going to call.”
By including the price, every call you receive will be pre-qualified.
If you are concerned about variables that may effect prices, include a disclaimer. For example: Most Houses In This Neighborhood Painted For $899. Some restrictions apply. Call for a FREE, no obligation Estimate.
Marketing dollars are tight. Funny, that seems to be the case in good times and bad. Nevertheless, you want to get the most for what you spend. So, do you order full color glossy postcards or less expensive two color postcards?
To help decide, consider two factors:
Consideration Number 1: What are you selling?
If you are selling a high end product like jewelry or furniture – or – a high end service like cosmetic dentistry or major home remodeling, then as they say, “…a picture is worth a thousand words” and a full color glossy postcard will probably work better.
If you are selling lower priced products or service like fast food or driveway seal coating, then a two color postcard may work just fine.
Consideration Number 2: Wo are you selling to?
Image is important, especially if your target market is higher income. A full color postcard may work better in this situation. If your service requires an in home estimate, a photo of you or your employee(s), looking neat and professional, may provide the secure feeling necessary to be invited into your prospects home.
Consideration number 1 & 2 don’t always coincide. For instance, perhaps you are offering a weekly lawn service at a relatively low price, but your target is higher priced homes. A full color postcard is probably the way to go while the same type of service offered to middle class homes might work with a two color door hanger.
Here’s another idea. Save money by using a two color postcard to drive prospects to your full color website.
Your the boss. With the information above, you need to make the decision. Have confidence in what you are doing and you’ll get it right!
Are you considering a Direct Mail Advertising Campaign for your business? Good for you!
Direct mail advertising works!
Direct mail advertising shouldn’t cost you money it should make you money!
If you mail once a week, you’ll get new business every week!
It’s all true. But, it isn’t always easy.
I’ve seen lots of small businesses “test the water” and go running for the shore after one mailing and a “cold” response rate.
Response rates are hard to predict. Here are just a few things that can affect response:
- Your Price
- Your Mailing List
- Your Offer
- The Uniqueness Of Your Product or Service
- Your Competitors
- The Image You Project
- Mother Nature
Like anything else in business, if you are determined to make it work you can. If you decide to dive in, be prepared to mail, track response, fine tune and then mail again. It may take a few tries, but once you find the right formula, response rates can be very predictable.
Direct Mail Advertising Works!
Remember, if Direct Mail Advertising was easy, every business would be doing it. Every business is not doing it – only the successful ones.
Over the years we have developed a simple 4 step process to designing an effective postcard. The most important thing about postcard design is to get noticed. When your prospect reaches into his mailbox to get the mail he will go through the stack and quickly sort out what’s important and eliminate the “Junk Mail”. You have only a few seconds to grab his attention.
Step 1 – THE GLANCE TEST
Use a headline, an image or a combination of both to tell your prospect what the postcard is all about. He should be able to know what you are offering with just a glance. The glance test is half the battle, if the prospect cannot easily determine what you are offering – it won’t matter what else you have on the postcard, he’s going to toss it.
Step 2 – THE MAGNET
A special offer, discount or a unique product or service is the best way to get a good response from you direct mail campaign. Make sure you make the magnet large enough. Promote the magnet – not your business.
Step 3 – YOUR CLAIM TO FAME
If you get past the glance test and have a strong magnet, you are going have your prospect’s attention. Now, include your “Claim To Fame”, how long you’ve been in business, and other image building information about your business. This should be in regular size type so that it doesn’t compete with the magnet and the main headline. Use bullet points rather than paragraphs.
Step 4 – THE CALL TO ACTION
How do you want you client to respond? Telephone, mail, email, website or in person? Make sure your call to action is clear and prominent. If you have more than one, list them in the order of importance.
A final thought. It’s the message that makes people respond – not the messenger. Make sure the message on your postcard is the best it can be. Good Luck!