When it comes to direct mail, a lot of people think of postcards as the quick down-and-dirty starting point. Using postcards can be a great way to build brand awareness and start to generate leads. However, this can not be looked at lightly and just slap a photo, quick copy and then stamped and mailed off. In order to see success you really need to put the time in and develop a strategy behind your campaign.
I hear so many times "We tried direct mail- we put together a postcard, sent it out and got no responses". Many times this is due to the company trying this themselves to cut costs. This is never a good way to go. It is very important to have an experienced marketing person and graphic designer helping you create your postcard so you maximize every cent you are spending.
The marketing person should help you define:
- Who the target market is that you will be sending to
- Build a quality list through a reputable list company
- Define what your target markets problems are and how you overcome them
- Create an offer around these solutions
- Develop a theme or concept for the campaign
- Develop a schedule to launch this campaign in order to hit in the right timeframe (season, month, week, day etc.)
- Develop a full sales cycle for this campaign, make sure this campaign fits into the current sales cycle and helps define any items needed to service the leads and convert the into customers
The Designer should help you:
- Stand out from your competition
- Stand out & grab attention in your target markets mail box
- Build on your brand and stay consistent with all other marketing collateral (web site, trade show booth, brochures, etc.)
- Keep the design clean, professional and easy to read and understand the message and offer
- Design and develop the other pieces of this campaign that will be tied to the postcard in order to keep things consistent
- Design the postcard in the best way to follow the post office requirements to help cut costs
We recommend hiring a firm if you do not have these people on staff. The key is not outsourcing this stuff to two different consultants who have never worked together before. Look for a firm that can do both of these things. Although, the price may be a little more, you will get better results that will be well worth the investment.
You may be asking yourself why you need to go to this extent for a little postcard. Well, more times than not people just slap something together and send it and this ends up costing them. Do not waste your money by throwing something at the wall to see if it sticks. Be precise and targeted.
Here are some last thoughts:
- The list is very important choose a list wisely.
- The message needs to resonate with your audience
- The offer needs to be clear and tell the viewer what to do
- Create a sense of urgency to get the viewer to take action right now (for a limited time only, etc.)
- Make sure the design stands out and grabs attention
- Use a professional mailhouse to get the best rates
To see a few examples of the direct mail campaigns we have worked on check out the Brandwise direct mail section of our web site.