When it comes to doing direct mail for your business there’s a lot more involved than simply getting the address and stamp on your mail piece and waiting for the phones to start ringing. To be honest, there are a lot of moving parts and if you want to be successful with your direct mail efforts (and not spend more money than necessary) you’ll probably want to take advantage of some of the services a professional mailing house has to offer. Here’s a quick overview of some of those services (and what they’ll do for you).
You may have an in-house list of your customers that’s worth its weight in gold. But if your data (name, address, etc.) isn’t organized the way the USPS wants it, you won’t be able to use it to address your letters or postcards. Mailing providers can work with your data to make sure that it sails through the USPS without a hitch.
Sometimes you want to reach prospects that aren’t in your own database. Where do you find the names and addresses? Which lists are good matches for what you want to accomplish? Customer service representatives can help you with that research and advise you on which lists to choose.
You may be lucky enough to have an in-house graphic designer to create your direct mail pieces. If not, you may want some professional help because good direct mail design is essential for getting your mailing to your prospects—and for getting it opened and generating a response. Most direct mail companies offer these services.
It’s not just your address that has to meet the requirements of the USPS in order for your mail to go through. There are specifications about size, weight, thickness, and even placement of barcodes and addresses that have to be followed exactly. Non-compliance can make your mailing cost a lot more—or worse—be rejected completely. Mailing companies should help you out in this category.
Sometimes you want to include personal information in a mailing—whether it’s the insertion of someone’s name or vital information in the text, or matching a donor receipt to the right address. Most mailing companies have the equipment and the expertise to make sure that’s done flawlessly.
Sometimes a simple postcard just won’t get the job done. You may want to include receipts, statements, additional information, or something else in an envelope. Doing it by hand is a time-consuming nightmare.
Not everything can be run off of an in-house copier. If you need brochures, flyers, postcards, or other items printed, mailing companies have the resources to get that done (and ensure that the printed pieces will meet USPS regulations).
In today’s marketing environment, your direct mail needs to be integrated with your other marketing efforts such as email, social media, and other online efforts. We can help you plan and coordinate those various efforts. You can get an overview of why this is so important (and how you can manage it) by downloading our free Best Direct mail Practices in an Evolving Multi-Channel Marketplace eBook.
There are a lot of different parts to the direct mail marketing puzzle. And while you don’t need to be an expert in all of them to succeed, it’s great to know somebody who is and can help when you need it!