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WHAT MY DEAR GRANNY TAUGHT ME ABOUT DIRECT MAIL

I had the privilege of having a very smart and witty Grandmother, God rest her soul.  Man, was she a hoot.  Betty would do anything for anyone at anytime. I learned quite a bit from her. Lessons I still use to this day. This woman did a Crossword Puzzle every single morning for decades; she knew her stuff needless to say. She loved her family and friends very much and expressed that in countless ways. 
 
I would always receive a card from my Grandma each year for my Birthday, as would the rest of the family. I can still picture one of her bright envelopes and that unique cursive (what's that) handwriting of hers. Growing up she had a Dog named Sadie. Each of her cards would always come with paw print stamps next to her signature giving it an extra special touch. I miss those cards.
 
Direct Mail Marketing has a bad rep. Quite a few people I run into assume Direct Mail or Postal Marketing is a way of the past. I disagree. Don't get me wrong, you must do your homework. Direct Mail takes a certain touch that not only sticks with the consumer, but builds trust and sparks emotion at the same time. My Grandma didn't know it, but she would have made one hell of a Marketing professional. 
 
Here's why...  
 
 
 
QUALITY OF INVESTMENT
The term ROI or Return On Investment isn't one of my favorites. The return often times might not be black and white necessarily. Look at any Marketing avenue and gauge its value by the Quality of Investment.  What does it do for your company or brand that might not be seen on some fancy pie chart or graph? Are you Marketing solely to up your sales or striving for a lifelong customer loyal to your brand? You better know the difference. Check out these 2016 Loyalty Customer Statistics
 
Being able to budget for numerous Grandchildren year round is no walk-in-the-park. I would always ask my Grandma, "What if you spend money you need for other things?" When you're a young buck, the importance of family hasn't quite clicked entirely.  In Betty's eyes, she was spending (investing) that money in the best way she possibly could - on her family. What was given to her in return wasn't important. The quality of how the money was spent was the priority. Don't get me wrong, I want you to set goals and knock them out of the park. With that said, don't keep yourself up at night worrying how successful the campaign will be from a dollar standpoint. What was the Quality of Investment?
 
Budgeting for your Direct Mail Marketing should be established early. The quickest way your boss or supervisor will pull the plug on your Direct Mail efforts is when it starts affecting other Marketing budgets. Stick to the same piggy bank with your Direct Mail budget. The profit earned from one campaign can be used for the next one (and the next one). Repeat this effectively and tell me how that's working out for you; thank me later.     
 
 
FAMILIAR FACE
Those Birthday cards I mentioned before always had a special touch to them. From the handwriting and puppy dog paw print stamps to the vibrant colored envelope, there was no question where the card came from. This was a familiar face. How will your Direct Mail stand out? Does it blend in with the other white envelopes or have a certain pop to it that is recognized from the second the mail is picked up? Are you a familiar face or another piece of junk mail? 
 
Somewhere in the mix there was a misunderstanding people don't enjoy receiving mail. I love getting mail. In fact, 36% of people under the age of 30 enjoy checking their mail each day. Becoming a familiar face is something that is earned, not bought. Be creative. Think outside of the box. It's 2016, if you can think of it, chances are it can be done. Implement a calling card or trademark with your Direct Mailing. Car dealerships will send actual car keys. Establish a genuine, recognizable approach in all of your Direct Mail. 
 
 
STAY OUT OF THE TRASH
Direct Mail has more of a personal feel to it. Not to mention, in comparison to Email Marketing, what distractions do you have opening an envelope? I'll tell you a million distractions (and then some) while I check my Email. As many as half of U.S. Consumers prefer Direct Mail over Email Mar.... I'm not persuading you to use one or the other, I'm trying to keep any and all of your Marketing out of the trash.
 
To this day, I still have numerous cards and letters from my Grandma. Sure, I might be a little bias, but each of them had a special touch that made me want to keep it. There are countless ways and tricks to make your Email as appealing as possible. However, people can be hesitant if there are too many bells and whistles that go along with an Email. Direct Mail is different. Add as many bells and whistles as you would like. Be remembered
 
Craig Simpson, Contributor at Entrepreneur, wrote an article in 2015 regarding the benefits of Direct Mail. He stated, "Forget fighting for Email space during a busy day and step in when they're already taking a moment to themselves." He's absolutely correct. I delete Emails hourly. I don't throw away Mail hourly. What's going to put you up on the refrigerator and keep you out of the trash?
 
 
TELL THE NEIGHBORS
Betty spoke her mind from time-to-time and that might be sugar coating it a little. If she had something positive (or negative) to tell someone, she would. Say a company was rude on the phone or didn't live up to their word with their products, you better believe her neighbors heard about it. As you can imagine, the material of a clever piece of Direct Mail could spread like wildfire in Betty's neck-of-the-woods.
 
What's being said to the neighbors of your Direct Mail recipients? Is it good...bad...anything at all? Shout out to my Senior Citizens in the front row -  Direct Mail ranked as the Top Purchase Influencer for Baby Boomers, not to mention the number one Influencer of Seniors switching Medicare Plans. Email? Pfff. 
 
Correct me if I'm wrong, but who doesn't love free stuff? Am I right? Give the recipient reason to keep your Mail. Whether immediate use/reference or for down the road, what incentives are you giving in your Direct Mail Marketing?Prizes, Contests, mix it up a bit. Marketing is give-and-take more than we realize. If you want to be known in the neighborhood, it starts with the Mailbox.

Views: 88

Tags: direct, email, incentive, investment, mail, marketing, of, postal, quality

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