Industrial marketing success has many components. One of the most important components is your ability to communicate your message in a meaningful and persuasive way. Your marketing communications need to be able to inform, persuade, or remind on a consistently excellent basis. Sound easy? Well I can tell you that the field of marketing communications is one filled with plenty of pitfalls and more dead-ends than you might imagine in your worst nightmare.
One of my favourite forms of marketing communications is an old one—direct mail. Done well, direct mail promotions remain an incredibly effective way to hit your target market with pinpoint accuracy. Due to a general decrease in mail volume, direct mail also has the added benefit of high visibility. But there is much to consider: copywriting, offers, lists, and media selection are just some of the variables that must be weighed when launching a promotional campaign.
Here are three tips for your next direct mail promotion that will help you improve your results.
Get inside their world
The first step to improving your direct mail promotions is to spend time inside the world of your target market. This is not to say that you have to job-shadow your prospects at their place of work (although that’s an intriguing idea) but rather that you need to do some research. It’s a simple matter to go online and spend an hour or two on Google and get a pretty good handle on what is going on in nearly any marketplace.
I would encourage you to gather information that runs from broad to specific as it allows you to quickly discover both general marketplace challenges as well as particular internal company problems. For example, in a general way your prospects could be facing environmental challenges, competitive challenges, political challenges, legal challenges, or even cultural challenges. More particularly, they may be facing specific problems within their own companies, such as the development or market acceptance of a specific product.
Get inside their heads
Once you have a good indication about their challenges and problems you then have some insight into their thinking.
As you know, the most effective marketing communications have key messages that revolve around the needs of the audience. You now have the prospect knowledge that will guide you in terms of how to best write your direct mail promotion. It becomes a simple matter to discuss and extend their worries and offer them your particular solution as pain relief.
Get inside their offices
One of the things industrial marketing professionals tend to forget is that the best direct mail promotion in the world means nothing if it does not reach the intended recipient. Your direct mail package must land on their desks if you hope to gain any kind of response. If your direct mail promotion screams out “advertising” then it will end up in the recycling bin. If it is never read it will be an epic failure. Use white envelopes with a return address and no company name, and, if possible, live stamps instead of indicia.