Direct Mail Advertising: A Key Ingredient For Successful Business Growth
By Keturah Whitaker
In today's highly competitive economy, it is essential that you promote your business with marketing materials that strategically position your business for increased customer traffic, expansion and growth.
A highly effective marketing tool that will dynamically promote your business is direct mail advertising. The success of your direct mail advertising will be highly dependent upon the perceived quality of your business, the design, the message you're conveying, and the special offer. The combination of these factors determines if your direct mail piece will influence your reader to contact you or get tossed aside. You have exactly 3 seconds to make a lasting impression.
Customer Mailing Lists
To get started, you will need to compile and develop a database for your customer mailing list. If you are targeting different customer segments, then you should have a separate database for each targeted market. Also, your direct mail offer should be designed specifically for each market. For example, if you are targeting age groups 15-20 and 50-65, your direct mail piece for your 15-20 target market must be designed differently than your 50-65 target market. The term for this aspect of marketing is called differentiated marketing.
There are multiple sources for locating potential customers for your direct mail campaign. Excellent sources to search for your potential customers are the yellow pages, white pages, newspapers, trade publications, the local Chamber of Commerce directory and you may want to consider contacting mailing list companies for list building. Before you develop your lists and leads, it is vital that you conduct research to "know" who your customers are; their needs and preferences.
Types of direct mail collateral to send to your targeted lists:
Postcards are quick and easy because the message is short and simple and they are inexpensive to have printed. Postcards can immediately advertise new products and services and announce a new store location. Postcards achieve an almost 100% readership versus an envelope, as it doesn't have to be opened to read your special offer. Postcards can be converted into coupons for special customers or cross sell your other products and services.
This mailing consists of an introductory letter introducing your business or your offer and a flyer or sales brochure that will highlight your business services and products. This method is very effective. However, the costs involved with this type of mailing are more expensive than a post card.
Newsletters are the perfect way to notify your customers and potential customers of your current business news, introduce new services, promote new products, communicate special offerings, and demonstrate you are an established leader in your industry and community. Newsletters also make excellent handouts for business meetings, off site workshops, trade shows, networking seminars and community events.
Final thought: direct mail has always been a popular medium to advertise for any business, whether your business is home-based, a small business, a midsize business or a large business. Extraordinarily designed direct mail that communicates your business and introduces special offers, can open doors for excellent sales leads and contribute to your business bottom line: increased sales, capture market share, growth and expansion.
Keturah Whitaker is the CEO/President of CoreNet Imaging Solutions®, an Atlanta based design firm that provides small business owners and non-profit organizations, with graphic design services for brochures, newsletters, newsletters, direct mail, flyers, pamphlets, business cards, business forms, and print media ads. She can be reached by calling 770-953-0252 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.