Direct mail postcards are anything you ask them to be – your messenger, your introduction, your invitation for buyers to try a new product, your buyer’s sage advisor, your case study, your customers’ testimonials, your friendly reminder and your after sale thank you.
The Power of Targeted Direct Mail
Postcard mailings create a tangible, emotional connection between you and your buyer and deliver a personal invitation for buyers to do business with you.
The value of a single glossy, well-designed postcard delivered into the hand of the right buyer at the right time is (practically) immeasurable. Postcard mailings create a tangible, emotional connection between you and your buyer and deliver a personal invitation for buyers to do business with you. They also position you to be the brand that buyers recall first when they’re ready to make a purchase.
Besides serving as a communication channel that sends any message you can imagine to targeted buyers, direct mail postcards are budget-friendly too. Their low cost makes them the perfect option for testing messages and targeting specific customers even when your budget is small.
Define Your Goal
When you’re ready to tap into the power of direct mail marketing, the first step to take is to identify your goal and define who your target audience (market) is. Are you introducing yourself to buyers, building an exclusive brand, raising brand awareness or differentiating your business from competing businesses?
Design the Mailer
Once you’ve hashed out who you want to make your offer to and why, design your offer. What will you say to entice the right buyers to respond to your offer? Will you offer a trial period, give buyers a deadline to respond, offer a free online eBook or give special perks or services to buyers who refer friends and family?
Print and Prepare to Measure the Response
Now that your offer is designed, it’s time to print your message on mailable postcards.When selecting your postcard size, be sure to follow United States Postal Service (USPS) guidelines for thickness and size limits so you can take advantage of the 35 cents per postcard rate. Generally speaking, the postcard must be at least 3.5″ x 5″ and no larger than 4.25″ x 6″ with a thickness of .007″ to .016″.
Before you mail, devise a method for measuring response rates. Traditional methods for tracking direct mail response include asking buyers how they learned about your company, giving customers a unique telephone extension to reply to, providing buyers with a promotional code to enter on your website or directing customers to a specific page on your website.
How your staff handles responses should be explained and agreed upon before the drop date of your mailing. Meet with staff and provide written guidance on how responses will come in, how to answer buyers’ questions, how to track those responses and who to forward responses to for follow up.
Target Your Mailer to the Right Audience
Now it’s time to purchase or create your mailing list. Purchase a mailing list from a list broker such as InfoUSA or ExactData or mail to an entire membership list of any associations you’re affiliated with. Other options for obtaining addresses to mail to include using a direct mail company or online print service list to print, stamp and mail postcards for you, or create a mailing list extracted from your own database (or Excel spreadsheet when your mail list is still in the development phase).
Another approach is going straight to the source and taking advantage of the United States Postal Service’s Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) program. This service enables you to reach every business or residential customer in a given neighborhood, city, or ZIP code.
Use a clean mailing list or have your list cleaned. A clean mailing list has duplicate addresses removed, ensures that addresses in the list are deliverable (i.e. real locations) and that addresses have been updated as people and businesses move. List brokers and mail houses typically guarantee a clean list and provide the date the list was last updated. For small to medium-sized businesses mailing to their own in-house lists, you can have your list cleaned and certified by a list cleaning service for as little as $50.
Need Help? The Printed Image Is Your Columbus Direct Mail Marketing Expert
Now that you understand the advantages of putting a direct mail campaign in place, put postcards to work for your business today. They’re more cost-effective than hiring a sales force (especially if you’re a small to medium-sized business), are a snap to plan, design and mail and could be exactly what your business needs to drive sales.
Need help getting your direct mail campaign off the ground? We’re a one-stop shop and can help you out every step of the way. Contact us today to request an estimate and discuss your sales and marketing goals!