Marketing Do's and Don'ts

Direct mail tips and techniques

Record Information Services is a data complier. As a result we do an enormous amount of direct mailings promoting our products. We have learned a lot about direct mail advertising over the years.

Keep your message simple. You have only a few seconds to get your product or service across.Do a simple, powerful message that clearly states what you are selling and what the benefits of your product or service are. Avoid too many details, especially on the cover of a brochure. Saying too much can be as bad as saying too little. There is a fine balance.

Determine your "Customer Profile". Examining your current customer base and determining its characteristics is the starting point. You want to target the right audience for your product or service.

Test. Many variables can affect the response to a direct mail piece. Time of year, the list, the marketing piece, etc. Do a smaller mailing at first so you can get a read on what's working and what is not. If you do this, you can save both time and money in mailing, postage and list costs.

Designing your mail piece. You want to include something that will make your potential customer react. A piece that just tells them your name, address and business hours wont do much. But a buy one get one free promotion just might get their attention. The more you personalize your piece, the better chance you will have at increasing your response rates. Offering a free gift for a response is not bad. Nothing fancy, even a free coffee can work wonders. Also if you're offering a discount of some kind, put an expiration date on it. Do not leave it open ended as they will think they have forever to respond.

Analyze the response. Make sure you track where your sales are coming from. You must be able to tie out your sales to your lead source.

Mail more than Once. Repetition is very important. If your roofer sending out post cards perhaps someone did not need a roof that day. Keeping your name out in front is critical. Be pleasantly persistent. It does pay off.

Direct mail is a great way to increase your visibility and increase sales. With today's "Do Not Call lists" and unlisted phone numbers, a direct mail marketing program is a critical component of small businesses.