What’s the secret to success with direct marketing? It really all boils down to avoiding the common mistakes that kill other campaigns. By avoiding all the things you can do wrong, by default, you’ll be doing everything the right way.
So, what are the most costly direct marketing mistakes?
1. Using an untargeted mailing list – When it comes to direct mail, it’s all in the list. If you’re using an unproven, untargeted list, you’re not going to get the results you want. It’s as simple as that. You want lists that are highly targeted to your offer.
2. Giving the reader too many options – Common sense might tell you that the more options you can give a customer the likelier it is that they’ll choose something they like. Too bad that’s not how it works. The truth is that giving your readers too many options actually overwhelms and paralyzes them, leading to no decision at all. So, keep it simple.
3. Having an actionless ad – The whole point of direct marketing is to get readers to respond and take action. Whether that action is to place an order now, call you, visit a specific landing page, or whatever else, you need to tell the reader what exact action it is you want them to take. Clearly spell it out, and give them a strong incentive for taking action.
4. Not making a strong offer – The strongest copy in the world can’t save a weak offer. If the offer doesn’t resonate with the reader, people won’t respond. Start by creating a great offer that readers can’t resist. Then, work around that.
5. Sending readers to your generic website – Don’t just send readers to your homepage. That’s a terrible mistake. If you’re going to send them online, send them to a specific landing page related to the direct marketing piece. The landing page and the direct marketing piece should be unified and work together to move prospects toward conversion.
6. Not tracking your results – The whole point of direct marketing is that you can easily track the results of your campaign. When you send out a mailer, you can easily see how many people send back the reply card, use the coupon, call the dedicated number, etc. Take the time to actually track your results to make sure your campaign is turning a profit.
7. Neglecting the importance of testing – Never stop testing. From trying different headline variations to tweaking the offer, you should always be running tests to see what can boost your response rate.
Do you use direct marketing for your business? Share your best tips by leaving a comment.
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Download your free copy of 8 Shocking Secrets Press Release Distribution Firms Don’t Want You to Know here: http://www.ereleases.com/landing3.html