With direct mail marketing showing plentiful signs of coming back from the dead, any multi-channel marketing effort should include good old snail mail.
With budgets tight everywhere, there is a universal urge to avoid non-digital communications. Yet, as we learned in a previous post, evidence is strong that prospects really, really like having something in their hands to look at, handle, cogitate over, and save for later.
Seemingly small and innocuous, postcards are actually an ideal way to attract attention inexpensively. Some food for thought:
- A postcard is naked for the world to see. Nothing to open, no decision to be made about whether this is an important piece of mail or just “junk.” Before any judgment can cross the mind, it’s been turned over in your prospect’s hand, the message has been seen, and it’s being digested.
- A postcard’s message can be as easily-digested as Pablum.
- Your postcard should make only one point, and make it well, with a clear call to action, usually including an incentive. The action can be a visit to your website, a phone call, or a trip to your retail outlet – preferably with card in hand to receive that incentive.
- Prospects should be rewarded for handling and reviewing your postcard. While still making your incentive easy to collect, ask them to enter a code on your website or repeat it to an operator, or have them bring the card to your store — all ways of ensuring that your brand and message is seen several times as you hook them.
- Test drive your marketing with postcard mailings. By having prospects refer to your postcard to collect their incentive, you have an ideal opportunity to measure the effectiveness of your approach. Test the performance of different mailing lists, varying offers, new creatives or other variables by assigning individual codes and rigorously tracking the responses. (More on this in a later post!)
- Rinse, repeat, then repeat again. Multiple postcard mailings are an inexpensive but effective way of reminding prospects who you are, what you do, and why they should remember you. Like seeing the same television commercial or hearing the same ad on radio day after day, repeat mailings can reinforce your product and brand image and cause a disinterested prospect to become an interested customer as their needs and circumstances change.
Spoon-fed into the buyer’s mind, it slides effortlessly into their consciousness. Use pithy one-liners, strong hooks, compelling graphics, and very simple offers. Save the complexity for a different forum.
Glossy and expensive self-mailers or brochures can be marvelous advertising vehicles, but with the greater expense involved, they can make an entrepreneur feel as if he or she is betting the farm on a single roll of the dice. Postcards offer tremendous creative flexibility at very reasonable cost while effectively driving traffic to your website, store, or call center.
And for nearly nothing, too!