There are several ways in which companies, large or small, advertise. From the inexpensive and simple ones like a phone book ad, merchandise with company’s logo, and signboards, there are also the high profile ones like newspaper ads, television or radio commercials. Inconsistency and the negligence to measure the impact of an advertisement lead to the failure of a campaign.
Source: CMFS Corp
Direct marketing is one of the ways in which not only customer acquisition in great numbers is achieved but also long-term growth and increase in sales and revenue is instigated that becomes a continuous process. Many businesses, however, incorrectly believe that just because a previous direct marketing campaign did not yield a positive result so will the future ones would fail as well. If you are one of these companies, then let me tell you direct marketing has not become obsolete. There are certain strategies you must follow or, putting it in another way, certain lapses you must avoid. These lapses are not just minor acts of negligence but deadly sins of direct marketing. Let us enumerate them one by one:
Table of Contents
1. Ignorance About the Target Audience
Without having the prior knowledge about who will be interested in your products or services, you will fire arrows in all directions, and needless to say, none of them will hit the target. The tone of your message, design of your copy, how you will respond, everything depends upon who your target audience is.
2. An Unconvincing Copy
Your customers would turn away even if they were interested if your marketing copy is not compelling. It’s all about how well you can persuade them. Make sure to structure your copy with a meaningful and attention grabbing headline. Use clear, concise and short sentences. Make bullet points to focus on key aspects of your products or services.
3. Generalized Messaging
Rapid technological advancements have made it quite easy for businesses to know about their customers. If you fail to leverage it and send a generic message to your customers, your copy is likely to go into the trash. By developing a personal connection with your customers, it will be easy for you to engage with them. Not only they would read and respond to your message but will also take the required action i.e. being a regular customer from a prospective lead.
4. Weaker or Absolutely No CTA
How are the customers going to take action? With the help of a powerful call to action (CTA). It is a way to encourage the audience who will take appropriate action after going through your copy. This action can be making a purchase, or visiting the landing page on your website, sales call, consultation, or simply signing up for your mailing list.
You must always be clear about what you want the user to do. Poor CTA means you yourself are unaware of what action your user must take, so how can a user, despite being much interested in your product or service, act?
5. Dull Designing
You must be creative with your design. Creativity is a virtue that will take you ahead by making the audience attentive and interested in your products and services. Now, creativity does not mean you have to be an M.F.Hussain or Picasso. Different mail formats like leaflet, brochures, letter kind of forms, etc. can be used. Try out different colors, layouts, shapes and sizes in your copy. The idea is to be different, outstanding in the herd to look attractively diverse with positive qualities, of course.
6. No Tracking, No Enhancing
People do not taste utmost success at the very first go, unless they are a gifted prodigy and extremely fortunate at the same time. Once your campaign begins, you must start tracking its progress. Monitor each campaign. See how it performs and enhance it continuously. Do not set unrealistic goals and have measureable KPIs from which insights can be easily drawn. Have an identifiable route through which your audience is coming in contact with you and also track it thoroughly to determine what goes right and what went wrong. Then transform your plans and actions accordingly.
7. Stand-Alone Campaigning
Direct mailing is a subset of your complete marketing campaign, and it should fit in properly complementing all the other aspects of your campaign. So integrate it with all the other online and offline channels of your marketing that includes email marketing, social media marketing, and events to promote your brand, and so on. Stand-alone campaigns fail to be as convincing as they must be and often end up going into the trash bin. When you incorporate multichannel outreach with your direct mail, it helps in the formation of a comprehensive, exclusive, and immersive brand experience for the end users with regards to your products and services.
Direct marketing has not become obsolete. Although it is an old approach but certain things get better with age. Direct marketing is one of them.
Make sure not to commit the afore-mentioned deadly errors—always know your audience, have a convincing marketing copy, incorporate personalization, have a strong CTA, be creative with design, track your progress, and last but not least, integrate your direct marketing with other channels.