Too often, people tend to think of direct mail as outdated, and somehow at odds with digital marketing. They see them as mutually exclusive, rather than complementary, and they feel as though they need to choose between the two. However, a study in 2009 by ExactTarget found that direct mail had been directly involved in influencing an online purchase. Which means direct mail is not only a good idea for brick and mortar companies with an online presence, but also for e-commerce only businesses looking to connect in the real world. Here is what you need to know about using direct mail to boost your digital business.
Make an Offer They Can’t Refuse
If you are making direct mail part of your broader sales funnel, you can incorporate online offers on your marketing materials, along with your main marketing message. A small box offering a digital freebie like a free download, webinar or eBook can turn your direct mail pieces into dual marketing materials, by generating interest to call about the main offer, and by encouraging readers who are not already on your email marketing list to opt in. Or refer to your website in your copy, for instance “visit our website to view thousands of other options.”
Keep URLs Short
There’s a big difference between clicking a link and typing a URL. The longer and more complicated the URLs you put on direct mail, the less likely people are to take the time to visit your site for more information, or to make one of those purchases mentioned above. A better option is to include a link to your homepage, and to make sure that you have clear links to the areas you want people to visit on that page. Keep your home page simple if you plan to direct traffic there though. Too many options on a web page tend to dilute results.
Make Your CTA Clear
If you are linking your direct mail marketing to your website by using online offers, make sure it’s clear what the reader needs to do to. For instance, if your aim is to boost online sales, provide a coupon code, and then include instructions on how to use it, for example: “Use this coupon code to make a purchase on yoursite.com before the end of July, and receive a 10% discount.”
Make Offers Time Sensitive
Whether you are using direct mail to generate traffic or not, making offers time sensitive is always a good idea. Limited time offers (online or in the real world) create urgency, and customers are more likely to make impulse decisions if they’re afraid of missing out. It has been proven that limited time offers drive consumers to ignore price, focus on savings, and make spending decisions faster.
There are many ways your direct mail and your website can complement and support each other. Make sure that you make the most of the personal touch of direct mail by integrating your online presence with your offline marketing materials.