1. Your Most Valuable Asset
A mailing list of valued customers is single most important asset you have. Loyal customers will spend an average of five times more in your business than new customers. Plus it costs ten times more to acquire a new customer.
When choosing a mailing list, first identify your best customer. What is their age, income level, and geography?
Then identify your "perfect" customer. Select mailing lists which match your perfect customer profile. If you're selling business to business, select type of business, number of employees and geography, then tailor your message to this audience.
2. The Three Most Effective Words
Copy is persuasive argument that sells your product or service. Begin your copy with a strong headline that spells out benefit of your product or service.
The three most effective words in direct mail are "you," "free," and "new." Studies show that using these words in headlines can boost your response dramatically.
Letter copy should follow a simple formula that will help you organize your thoughts and make a convincing sales argument.
A. Attention: The headline must grab their attention and make them want to read further. B. Interest: Grab their interest with a sub-headline that states your Unique Selling Proposition (what sets you apart from everyone else.) C. Desire: Elicit desire by painting word pictures of your prospect using your product or service and enjoying its benefits. Give testimonials of customers who have benefited from what you offer. Tell stories of people who used your service despite their initial apprehension. D. Close: Ask for order. Make it convenient for them to respond. Give your prospects choices of how to get in touch with you. Use a P.S. at end of letter to pique their curiosity.
3. What's In It For Me?
Your offer attracts people to your business or service. Direct mail will not work if you use it like a billboard. It is like saying, "SEE ME, I'M OVER HERE" at 60 m.p.h. In order for your direct mail to achieve measurable results you must have a compelling offer.
Your offer can include money, free gifts, guarantees, testimonials, sale events, coupons, gift certificates, sweepstakes, drawings and private sales. Test different offers and see what works best for you.
When you're marketing to a business, personalization is important. Make your outside envelope look like a personal business letter. Keep your copy to 1 or 2 pages and offer an incentive for responding quickly..
4. Experience Captivating Graphics
Designing a mail piece should accomplish 2 things. One is to get attention of your reader. Two, is to visually clarify written message you are trying to get across.
There are six elements that determine good direct mail design.
A. One visual element should dominate page, whether it's a photo, headline, cartoon or graphic. B. Use only one or two typefaces. Stick with one or two families of type. Use one for headlines and bolded sub sections and one for body copy. The body copy should always be a serif typeface, it's easier to read. C. Use lots of white space when you want to make a lasting impression. D. Make sure your text is easy to read. Don't make your margins too wide or your columns too long. Space out lines of your text so they are easy to read. Use bullets, bold, underlines and short paragraphs. E. Display your logo and pertinent contact information.