Successful Direct Mail Marketing For Small Businesses

When sending out any form of Direct Mail, whether it be flyers, catalogues, brochures, letters, postcards, booklets, etc, it’s vitally important that the mail piece ends up in the hands of the right person. Lets say your small business is selling sports equipment for schools; it doesn’t make much sense to send out a Direct Mail campaign to a block of flats now does it.

To avoid this, ensure your database includes the right people. Make sure the database you use is made up of people you know, or, if you’re buying a database, ensure it comes from a trustworthy source. That’s rule #1. The second rule is just as important, ensure that your mail piece makes a good first impression. If the person who’s receiving your mail piece finds it boring, they’re not going to spend their money. You effectively have 30 seconds to persuade someone to part with their money, so make it happen – give them a free doughnut if you have too!

Keep The Message Simple
That old idiom K.I.S.S – Keep It Simple Stupid, can never be used too much when it comes to Direct Mail. For some reason there are still mail pieces out there that are overloaded with information, so much so, you don’t know who the company is, or what they’re selling. To ensure you don’t make the same mistake, just remember that you don’t need to tell them everything about your business. It’s better to focus on one thing, and structure your ad around it.

Arguably, the best business out there when it comes to simplicity is Apple, they could send out a plain A5 postcard with just their logo on and people would jump into their wallets for no apparent reason.

Have A Great Offer
Unfortunately, not every company out there has the same effect as Apple. So, for your business to be effective, your mail shot needs to do more than just look attractive and make people feel happy. It should also include a great offer. This is the key element that will push your prospect over the line, and make them pick up the phone or drive to your store.

If you’re a theatre, it could be a free ticket to an upcoming show. If you’re selling World Cup gear, you could give away free England shirts (…on second thoughts, don’t give away an England shirt). Including words such as ‘free’, ‘new’, and ‘win’ can also help close the sale.

Visual Design Matters
Bright colours, large and easy-to-read fonts and attractive images can all help your Direct Mail piece. A picture really can tell a thousand words (unless that picture is of Wayne Rooney). If you can grab attention by including a photo of the most popular item in your store, by all means do so. Try to think outside the box, catch the eye of the reader and stand out from the crowd.

If you’re new to sending out Direct Mail campaigns it’s best to start with a smaller campaign with help from a mailing house and if it goes well, scale up. If you mailed to 5,000 schools and got a good response, then your next step could be to send 20,000 mail shots. This approach can be especially useful if your letterbox campaign incorporates new ideas and concepts. If it doesn’t generate a profit, you won’t have blown your entire budget in one go.

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