You’ve heard about how direct mail is a great tool to promote your business. You’ve probably gotten hundreds of direct mail postcards delivered to your own mailbox, at home, and at your workplace. But how do you make direct mail postcards work for your business?
Here are the 6 things you need to create direct mail postcards that get customers in the door.
1. An Offer
You need to know what you’re selling. Are you giving a 2 for 1 special on a specific item? Are you promoting a coupon for 25% off the first service a new customer buys? What are you giving people to get them in the door?
Your offer has to solve a problem that your customers are having. Do you run an auto repair center? Every driver needs an oil change. Or how about a special on winterizing services? Do you own a bakery near an industrial area? Offer a special deal on cookies or cupcakes for office parties around the holidays.
The possibilities are endless. But you want your offer to be the perfect solution to your customers’ problems.
This may take a bit of research on your part, but it shouldn’t be too hard. There are a few ways to figure out what your customers want.
I know this sounds obvious, but it can be more subtle than that. For instance, ask your customers what occasion they’re buying your most popular products for.
I’ll use the bakery example again. If someone buys 3 dozen cookies every other week, ask who they’re for. If one person’s office or organization has a bi-weekly meeting where cookies are served, there are probably others out there with the same need.
Review Your Records
See what products or services sell best, and at what times of the year. If you see patterns, use those to create offers on those best-sellers. Or you could offer an upgraded service or companion product to those best-sellers.
Pay Attention to Your Competition
And to businesses that complement yours. What are other businesses in your area offering their customers? What is the competition doing to attract customers? You can get some idea of what your customers want this way, and you can improve on these offers to get more people buying from you.
2. A Compelling Message
It’s not enough to say “2 for 1 Deal on Product XYZ.” You need to tell your customers why they need product XYZ. Your message doesn’t need to be long and involved, it can be a headline and a couple of sentences. But it does need to persuade people to buy.
Your message needs to tell customers:
- What you’re selling
- What problem this solves for them
- How this product or service will make their lives easier
Let’s use the auto repair center example and make our offer for winterization services. Your compelling message might look something like this:
You can see that this message covers all three of the points I listed above. Yet it’s still short, simple and compelling.
3. A Deadline
You’ll notice the second sentence of the second to the last paragraph of my offer above includes a deadline. You want to add urgency to your offer so people take action right away.
You need to give your customers a deadline or a specific date of some sort. This could be a limited time offer, like the one above. You could also have a reoccurring date, like every first Tuesday of the month is Free Cookie Tuesday, get a free cookie with every purchase.
4. Your Contact Information
When you’re sending a direct mail postcard campaign, you need to make sure people can take you up on your offer. Tell them exactly how to get a hold of you.
Make sure you include:
- Your phone number
- Your website URL
- Your physical address (if you are a brick and mortar business)
- Your hours of operation (this is for brick and mortar businesses and online businesses that have customer service representatives.)
I know this seems obvious, but I am always shocked at how many direct mail postcards I see in my mailbox that don’t include this information, or that don’t make this information easy to find.
Your customers are looking for the easiest way to get a hold of you. So, make it as easy for them as possible. You’re more likely to get a positive response and increase your ROI.
5. A Tracking Method
You want to know how your direct mail campaign performs, right? You’ll need some way to track your results.
An obvious way would be how many people walk through the door or sign up for your service. But it’s always best to have a specific way to measure how many people responded to your direct mail postcards.
Here are several methods you can use:
- Coupons or coupon codes
- QR codes
- Campaign specific URLs
- Personal URLs (these can be specific to demographic groups, areas you mail to or per customer)
- Unique offer IDs
6. A Simple Way to Build and Send Your Direct Mail Postcards
Inkit lets you create your direct mail postcard in our Custom Campaign Builder. You can design your own postcard using your company logo and preferred graphics.
Once you’ve got everything laid out the way you want it, we recommend sending yourself a test copy. That way you can make sure everything looks exactly the way you want it to when it’s printed. Your postcard “proof” should arrive in a couple of days.
Once you’re happy with the way the postcard looks, just upload your mailing list and hit “Send.” Your direct mail postcard campaign will go straight to the front of the printing queue at one of our printers. It will be printed and sent to USPS for delivery to your customers within a few days.
Go Forth and Build Your Direct Mail Campaign!
Now you know everything you need to create your first direct mail postcard campaign. We look forward to seeing what you create! If you’ve got something to show off, please put a link in the comments.