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5 Ways to Boost Direct Mail Response in Any Economy

January 26, 2015

During the 2008 financial crisis, one industry almost completely unrelated to real estate or finance was hurt to a degree far greater than many others: advertising.

In a down economy, many businesses – particularly large companies – respond to declining spending power by lowering their advertising spend. Today, almost seven years after the financial crisis, the advertising industry is still continuing to recover.

While billboards, branding campaigns, and television ads might be written off as not worth the money during a recession, there’s one form of marketing that excels even in a bad economy: direct marketing.

During the recent recession, direct marketing methods such as direct mail and email were the shining stars of an otherwise stagnant industry, generating huge results for the businesses that employed them effectively.

When used the right way, direct mail can be a hugely effective form of marketing in any economy. In this guide, we’ll share five tips to help your direct mail marketing campaign achieve its objectives in any economy, from bearish to bullish.

What Do Your Prospects Really Want? Ask Them

January 22, 2015

What Do Your Prospects Want Postcard Targeting

Ask any successful entrepreneur for the most important source of information they found while growing their business and you’ll get a familiar answer: their customers.

Customer feedback is a hugely important aspect of business growth. It’s one of the most important elements of the Lean Startup movement and a favorite of successful entrepreneurs and marketers the world over. 

Getting customer feedback is relatively easy – that is, if your business has customers to ask for feedback. But what about if your business is small and only just starting to engage in the type of direct marketing that produces customers and income?

Supercharge Postcard Response by Anticipating Customer Questions

January 20, 2015

Why You Should Identify Your Offer's FAQs Before Writing Postcard Copy

When you receive a marketing postcard or brochure in the mail, what questions pop into your mind? Marketing copy often raises as many questions as it answers, which makes answering your offer’s FAQs in advance a powerful marketing tactic.

This technique isn’t particularly new – in fact, it’s been a major part of sales for the last century. Salespeople for a wide range of products and services have anticipated their prospects’ questions and prepared their answers well ahead of time.

As, like advertising legend Albert Lasker used to say, “Advertising is salesmanship in print,” sales techniques like identifying frequently asked questions (FAQs) for your offer before preparing your campaign can have a huge effect on its results.

In this guide, we’ll explain how you can identify your offer’s FAQs before launching a campaign and transform them from points of ambiguity or confusion into powerful marketing advantages.

9 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting a Postcard Campaign

January 15, 2015

9 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting a Postcard Campaign

You were hit with a spark of inspiration and you’ve thought up a creative idea for a postcard marketing campaign. Now what? Before you can start your campaign, you need to be able to define its objectives, audience, and several other factors.

One of the easiest ways to define your campaign’s goals, audience, budget, and more is to ask yourself the right questions. Before you start preparing your campaign, ask yourself the nine questions below to increase its marketing efficacy.

How to Write a Creative Brief for Your Next Direct Mail Postcard Campaign

January 12, 2015

How to Write a Creative Brief for Direct Mail Postcard Campaign

Have you ever received work from a graphic designer that didn’t live up to what you had in mind? When you receive a creative that isn’t what you expected, the problem is often a mismatch between your expectations and your creative brief (or lack thereof).

A well-prepared creative brief is a roadmap for your graphic designer – an in-depth list of what to include in your direct mail postcard design. From your designer’s perspective, starting a project without a brief is like driving to a new destination without a map. 

This mismatch between expectations and communication can lead to designs that don’t match up with your vision. The end result may be a less effective campaign than the one you had visualized, and often a design that doesn’t match your business.

In this guide, we’ll share four techniques that you can use to write a creative brief for your next graphic design project, whether you’re creating a brochure for your business or launching a small business postcard marketing campaign.

10 Things Your Competitors Can Teach You About Direct Mail

December 5, 2014

Direct Mail Competitive Analysis

Are you new to direct mail? When you’re an absolute beginner – whether in sales, marketing or any other business function – working out which step to take is often a difficult process.

Do you send out a brochure or a catalog? Do you launch a postcard campaign? What should you write in your headline? Without any prior experience, it’s hard to know what you should (and more importantly, what you shouldn’t) be doing.

One of the best ways to find your footing and get started with direct marketing is by studying your competitors. Since some will have been in the market longer than you, they’ll possibly have honed in on the best techniques and strategies for direct mail success.

From the secrets of writing a good headline to the best colors to use, read on to learn the 10 most important things your competitors can teach you about direct mail.

20 Myths About Direct Mail

December 1, 2014

20 Direct Mail Myths

Do you think direct mail is just for “old-fashioned” companies? Or that mailing direct mail postcards is too expensive to be profitable? There’s no shortage of myths about direct mail, many of which couldn’t be more untrue.

From perceptions that direct mail “just doesn’t work” for young audiences to ideas that direct mail is impossible to customize, read on to discover the 20 biggest direct mail myths and why they’re 100% untrue.

Direct Mail: An Enabler of Omnichannel Marketing

November 24, 2014

Direct Mail and Omnichannel Marketing

From their mailboxes to their smartphones, tablets, notebooks and more, consumers now have a huge range of ways to receive marketing messages, connect with brands, and learn more about the companies and products they care about. 

While some may associate omnichannel marketing with smartphone apps, email newsletters and connectivity, the reality is that offline marketing – including direct mail and in-store experiences – plays a major role in executing a successful omnichannel campaign.  

From QR codes to online coupons, let’s take a look at how direct mail can be integrated into your omnichannel marketing campaign to connect with your target audience, increase brand recognition, and produce results.

Omnichannel Marketing: Not Just Another Buzzword

November 19, 2014

Omnichannel marketing

If you keep up to date with marketing news, you may have spotted mentions of “omnichannel marketing” in blogs and magazine. Omnichannel marketing is the result of a change from mass marketing to personalized communications. Omnichannel marketing is, in many ways, an evolution of integrated marketing, which saw businesses divide their marketing budget across multiple mediums to reach consumers online, offline, in print, via radio, social media, and using direct mail. While integrated marketing involved multiple marketing channels, omnichannel marketing is about a universal experience. From PC to tablet, retail store to phone, companies develop a unique experience across platforms and marketing channels. Confused? Not to worry. Like many other new marketing developments, there’s a great deal of discussion and debate about omnichannel marketing. There’s even a lack of consensus about how to spell it, much like the in early days of ecommerce. In this guide, we’ll explain what omnichannel marketing is, look at what is involved in an effective campaign, and explore the benefits of omnichannel marketing for your business.

Integrated Marketing Case Study: American Red Cross

November 13, 2014

Integrated Marketing Case Study: American Red Cross

In the fourth quarter of 2009, the American Red Cross faced a funding deficit. The economic crisis had left many of the humanitarian organization’s supporters short on cash and unable to provide the financial assistance they once could.

The Red Cross also faced an image problem. Although it was known worldwide as the organization dedicated to helping people during and after disasters, it was far less associated with holiday season giving than many other major charities.

With funding running out, this presented a serious obstacle for the Red Cross. True to its nature, the organization saw an opportunity in the funding shortage and put itself into action to work out how to repairs its finances.

Read how the American Red Cross used an integrated marketing approach to successfully achieve its objectives.