Each direct mail marketing campaign you undertake has a specific goal, so you have to target the audience accordingly. Aim at the wrong recipients, and you can’t expect much in the way of results. If your aim is true, though, direct mail can deliver more than you expected. That’s why many in the industry say your mailing list is the most important component of your campaign – responsible for up to 80% of your success.
Carefully selecting the right mailing list leverages your marketing budget, too – something small business owners can really appreciate. Because direct mail is surprisingly affordable to begin with, the ability to stretch it even farther means you can reach out to more prospects more often without overspending.
Since you can fine tune your mailing list to reach the people likely to be interested in your products or services, you can boost your chances for excellent response and earnings. You’ll get the best possible return on your investment, even as you’re attracting first-time customers you can transform into loyal long-term patrons.
For most small businesses, the average lifetime value of each customer is in the thousands of dollars. Not bad for a single, well-targeted campaign.
Who should you target?
Because direct mail is so versatile, there are many ways you can leverage mailing lists to reach your goals. For example, new homeowner mailing lists are particularly valuable for many types of local businesses. You can also use new a new resident list that includes renters as well as homeowners, depending on your type of business. What’s so special about reaching these people?
Millions of Americans move each year, and when they’re newly arrived in your town, direct mail can help you be the first to reach out and welcome them. You’re being neighborly, and you’re getting your foot in the door – or, more accurately, your postcard in their mailbox – before the competition. This is a tremendous advantage.
Your special offer of a free item or discount may be especially welcome to new residents, who have just gone through an expensive move. They aren’t new for long, though, so your mailings must be timely. And you must repeat them, because new folks are moving in all year long.
If all or part of your target audience is younger adults, don’t assume you can only impress them with online engagement. Studies show this group loves postcard promotions, so an imaginative direct mail offer delivered right into their hands will make a big impression.
Where do you get the names?
You can buy mailing lists or rent them to reach brand new prospects, creating a customized list using numerous demographic, geographic and other selection criteria. Or you can use all or part of your own internal mailing list to send direct mail promotions to existing customers.
It’s also possible to “go postal” using the USPS Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) program, but consult with a direct mail professional first to learn if this is strategically smart for your business. In most cases, EDDM is not refined enough to make the most of your marketing campaign.
A clean list is a profitable list.
The more effort you put into pinpointing the right recipients for each direct mail marketing campaign, the better your results will be. No matter how carefully you target your mailing, though, if the addresses are out of date, you will waste production and postage costs delivering your postcards to people that aren’t there anymore. This is entirely preventable, if you take steps to ensure your lists are frequently updated.
An experienced, full-service direct mail company can help you choose the best criteria for your mailing list, ensure the information is accurate and up to date and help you “scrub” your internal list, too.