Archive for April, 2017

Do Catalogs Still Drive Sales?

The belief that print is dead is not only erroneous, it is a false mindset that can cost you customers. Catalogs and brochures remain very effective tools to reach customers and drive sales. Printed marketing materials need to be a component of a successful outreach campaign. Email and digital materials are easily dismissed with a click of a button, whereas print is tangible, vibrant, and imparts information in an effective manner. Catalogs make shopping a more interactive, tactile, and physical experience. Many customers enjoy a mix of print and digital information, and when making the buy decision, many tactile people would rather shop from a printed catalog.

Catalogs also make a perfect leave behind at the conclusion of a sales call; rather than state that you will email them material, you are able to put it in their hand during those vital moments when they are strongly engaged with you. Catalogs are also perfect for recurring customers with whom you want to keep in touch, by having your catalog on their desk, and making that visual impression, can help to keep your company, and your products, at the forefront of their mind. Printed materials that are vibrant, promote the company’s brand identity, and impart useful information will be an effective piece of any direct marketing campaign.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that your firm does not need printed materials, and that digital can meet all of your marketing needs. Catalogs continue to play an important part in driving sales and keeping repeat customers engaged in the sales process. Catalogs present your products and services in a straightforward, informative, and easily digested manner that is accessible to customers across many market niches. Make sure that your marketing campaigns contain all of the tools available.

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Creating Effective Copy for Direct Mail

Direct mail is key to a robust marketing program, and is essential to keep your customers engaged and coming back to you. Creating dynamic content is necessary for a strong online presence, and finding your company’s voice will help to establish your brand identity with prospective and ongoing customers. In order to create good content it is key to cover topics that interest your customer base, explain how you can fill their needs, and why you are better than your competitors. When creating the copy for direct mail campaigns, be sure to focus on the following to make the content effective:

  • speak to your clients’ needs and aspirations. Briefly explain how your product or service can fill a gap for them and improve their bottom line,
  • give real world examples of business cases along with actionable steps for them to take to increase their market share,
  • ensure that all of your direct mail and printed pieces share a philosophy that weaves your mission statement into the content and also adheres to your brand’s identity,
  • do not overlook proper spelling and grammar, and adhere to usage rules such as tense and verb agreement, and
  • present your company as a stand-out in the industry, let your clients know why working with you is their best option.

Direct mail is an important part of a comprehensive marketing strategy, and when performed well can create many business opportunities. Creative content tells your brand’s story, and informs the reader about the advantages of a partnership with you. Well written, informative, and engaging direct mail content will keep you top of mind, and establish your firm as a thought leader, and a trusted resource. Find a distinct voice, be clear and concise, and guide them to a strong working relationship.

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Lead Generation for Your Direct Mail Campaigns

Direct mail can prove a useful tool for lead generation and attracting new customers. Targeted mailings that pre-qualify the recipient give you an edge in reaching potential customers that can benefit from your product or service.

What Can You do for Me?

When generating new sales from direct mail outreach, you have to let the target know why they need you. How can you help ease their points of pain, increase their profits, and add benefit to their overall experience. What do you have that will help to make their day to day more efficient, productive, and profitable? Keep this information short, sweet and to the point.

Benefits of Your Product over the Competition

After you have let them know that you can fulfill a need for them, tell why you are better than the competition. Highlight areas such as affordability, strong and engaged customer service, and quality of the product. Sell your company, and be sure to add some quantifiable statistics to enable them to see how you stack up against the rest of the market.

Call to Action

Provide a call to action with an immediate timeframe that will spur them to want to know more. By utilizing market research, you can tailor your pitch to each potential customer niche. This is where you show that you know their needs and that you are the company to successfully address them. Giveaways, invitations to lunch and learns, limited time offers on your service packages, and similar campaigns are all ways to get your prospects in the door.

Direct mail is a key component of successful marketing campaigns and is effective when done properly. Market research analysis will allow you to speak to their needs, present your solutions and pitch your product.

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Use Your Data to Maximize Your Direct Marketing

Companies are always trying to find ways to make the most out of their direct marketing campaigns. There are ways that you can use your data to maximize the area of direct marketing, and we will be discussing several of them in this article.

Gender of Targeted Customer

It is very possible that you already have swaths of information relating to the people to whom you would like send your direct marketing. You can collect analytics from your facebook page, website, and from your email list. You can then use that information to specifically target your chosen demographic. The most obvious piece of data you will want to use is gender. Whether you are selling farm equipment or fashion accessories, you will want to figure out whether your target customer is male, female, or both. You can tuck an incentive within your marketing for customers to go to a website or to type in a code online, and this will enable you to glean even more information about who is interested in your brand.

Your Clients’ Age

Your approach will have to be tailored to the age range you are attempting to appeal to. If your look is too mature, those who are young will be disinterested, and if it is too juvenile, you will lose those who are older. A thoughtful approach will take into account the values and the struggles of your chosen demographic without trivializing them.

Income Level

Knowing the income level of your target consumer is a must. Your ads and your brand will want to appeal to the desires of the group you are marketing to, and it must do so in such a way that buying from your company will help the customer, in some small way, to realize his or her hopes and dreams.

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You Could Be Wasting a Lot of Your Marketing Budget. Here’s Why!

As a business owner, you need to make your marketing budget count. When used efficiently, this money can help you draw in new customers and make more money. However, when used improperly, you may simply be throwing money out the window. Here are a few reasons why you may be wasting your marketing budget without even realizing it.

Your Marketing Materials Are Not Impactful

When you are creating a marketing campaign, you need to ensure everything is impactful. If your flyers are bland, your signs are boring, your social media posts don’t stand out and your emails get lost in the shuffle, customers are not going to notice you. You need eye-catching materials that customers will want to stop and pay attention to. If your materials are not impactful, your marketing campaign won’t be either.

You Are Using Over-Saturated Marketing Methods

Another reason why you may be wasting your marketing budget is because you are using methods that are over-saturated in your market. For example, blowing inflatables can be eye-catching and cause people to pay attention to the store they are displayed outside of. But if every store on the block has one, people won’t be so interested. If the methods you are using are over-saturated or mimic methods for similar businesses in the area, you need to do something to stand out or you may be wasting your marketing budget.

Your Marketing Methods Are Targeting the Wrong People

The last reason you are wasting your marketing budget is you are using methods that target the wrong people. You need to know the demographic of your customer and which marketing techniques appeal to that group. Teens love phone ads and social media campaigns. But if your business targets the elderly, you may see little result from a social media campaign, as the elderly don’t tend to frequent those sites. Always make sure you are targeting your demographical group with your marketing campaign.

If you feel like you are throwing money away on a marketing campaign, meet with a professional marketing agency. They can help you put together a campaign that helps you maximize your marketing budget.

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The Color Of Your Mail Envelopes Can Effect Your Responses

How important is the color of the mail you are sending out to prospects? Consider that the envelope is the absolute first thing a person will see. Before they read the return address, before they open it and find out what it is, they will notice the color. On that one split second alone, their mind has now framed how they are going to frame the information. The person may have even decided if he is going to open it at all or toss it.

There is an entire field of study dedicated strictly to the responses people give to color. Color symbolism, for instance, studies the conditioned associations we make with color. This of course, is based greatly on where we are raised. Green, for example, is considered lucky in Ireland but unlucky in England.  Red is associated with danger in many places but not all.

Color Psychology shows the effects colors have on a person’s mood and behavior. Certainly a key piece of information when it comes to print and direct mail marketing!

So as opposed to the conditioned meanings we can give to colors, they also create a psychological response because of the way the wavelengths are received by our brains.  Red can create aggression, intensity and get the blood pumping. Green can relax and soothe.

If you absolutely want someone to open a piece of mail, a red envelop will do it.  On the other hand, it might also make them aggressive and potentially angry when they open it. They might feel the sense of urgency wasn’t worth it. So really, it comes down to figuring out what kind of reaction you want, what kind of mental state you want your prospect to be in when they receive your message.

It’s also important to make sure (and test) that it is not evoking the negative side of that emotion as described with Red. Yellow will bring up emotion and confidence, but can also evoke anxiety and fear.

Take some time to learn some basics about this concept and apply it to a split test. You’ll be amazed at what you can learn and apply from the results.

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Using effective communications in your Marketing Efforts

Marketing communications is designed to help your company gain brand awareness and at the same time retain its existing customers. However, it is not always easy to communicate effectively especially if you have no experience in the marketing field. it is hard to know who to target, how and when to market and what strategies to use among more. So, what should you do to make the most out of your marketing communications?
Here is a glimpse of some of the communication strategies you can use to make your marketing efforts effective.
•    Keep the message simple and clear – Most companies have a deeper and complicated meaning as to why they do the things they do. But, that is not what people out there are interested in. Their only interest is what they can gain from the company and so, make sure your message is brief, simple, intriguing and clear for them to understand.
•    Know your audience – Successful marketing efforts begin with analyzing and knowing your audience. Different people have different needs and therefore, it is good that you do some research on the target audience before giving them any information. Sending information to the wrong audience will only use your money and effort.
•    Drop your corporate person hat – Remember, the people you are meeting out there are ordinary citizens and they will only listen to you if they feel they can relate well with you. So, use simple terms, understand their culture and try fit in to their day to day activities. From there, they will be interested in what you have to say.
•    Be confident – Nobody wants to listen to someone who is not sure of him or herself. When marketing, you are selling you company’s product and so, you have to convince your audience that you understand and believe in the product you are selling. Otherwise, you will just get frustrated since nobody will pay attention to you.

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Successfully Tracking Your Mail Campaign

Direct mail advertisements are one of the most effective methods of advertisement. The main advantage stems from the fact that with direct mail marketing, the market targeted is one that is likely to convert rather than a general market.

Moreover, it is an inexpensive method as compared with other methods of advertising, it costs much less. The major advantage, however, must be the fact that you can track your mail campaign. Most businesses, after releasing an advertisement, always wonder whether it is effective and whether it reached the intended market. With direct mail, you can track the results to realize whether you had a successful mail campaign.

How to Successfully Track Your Mail Campaign

The methods to successfully track your mail campaign are as explained below:

a)        Send follow up emails.

When using a direct mail campaign to advertise, a single mail is not enough. Most times, adverts in an email will receive a glance then it will be ignored. However, after sending the first mail, send a second mail reminding the potential customer of the first mail, and then a third mail reminding him of the first two emails. This way, if your competitor sends an email after your first mail, your subsequent mail will remind the customer of your product.

b)       Ensure that the target market is likely to convert.

Each business aims to increase profits and reduce costs. Increasing your Return on Investment requires cost-effectiveness of your campaign, and this cost –effectiveness is achieved if more customers convert. Therefore, target a market that has shown interest in your product before, as they are likely to convert.

c)        Use an attractive and eye-catching headline.

The first letters that the target market’s eyes will land on is the heading of your email. An attractive and well-scripted heading will increase the curiosity of the customer, and he or she will end up reading through the email.

By increasing the cost-effectiveness of your direct mail campaign, you increase your ROI, and this is possible only if you successfully track your mail campaign.

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