6 Mistakes to Avoid In Your Direct Mail Campaign

direct mail success

Avoid these mistakes to run a successful direct mail campaign.

Direct mail is an effective yet inexpensive marketing tool.  However, it takes careful planning and proper implementation if you want your marketing campaign to succeed.  Here are 6 common mistakes you want to avoid with your direct mail advertising campaign.

Mistake #1. Using the Wrong Mailing List

The mailing list is the most important component of your direct mail marketing efforts.  You may have the best mailing package with great copy and fabulous design but without the best list you will not get the response you were hoping for.

When it comes to direct mail advertising, the mailing list is your market.

The best list is your own “in-house” list of customers and prospects.  Unfortunately, not many companies capture and use customers names and addresses for mailing purposes.

Purchasing mailing lists from outside companies may not be very effective because many companies sell lists that are too broad.

Mistake #2. Superficial Ad Copy

Poor ad copy will kill the selling power of your marketing piece.

While your ad should be visually appealing, it also needs good content in order to have great selling power.  Visual presentation captures the initial interest of readers.  Once your reader is hooked, other elements in your ad come into play, such as powerful titles and compelling slogans or phrases.  Finally, your ad should provide facts and information to the reader.

If your ad is poorly written or contains poor grammar, misspelled words, or typographical errors, prospective customers will be less likely to respond.

Mistake #3. Failing to Test Each Piece

Business marketers who fail to track response or test different mailing pieces are bound to fail in their ad campaign.  You can’t expect to get everything right on your very first attempt at direct mail advertising.  There are many variables and variations to test, including different headlines and different marketing pieces (sales letters, brochures, etc.).

Unless you test to see what works and what doesn’t, you won’t be able to figure out what mail marketing package works best.  Keep testing and discover ways to improve response rates.

Mistake #4.  Not Using A Letter in Your Marketing Package

Tests show that an advertising package with a sales letter generates higher response rates than a postcard, brochure or ad without a letter.

A letter makes the ad more personal, and therefore more important to the reader.  Brochures, on the other hand, are viewed as pure advertising.

Mistake #5. Not Having An Offer

Readers will respond to a direct mail package if it contains an offer they find useful or relevant.  Without a clear offer, your package will simply go to the trashcan.

Marketing experts recommend that your advertising piece should sell the offer, not the product.  Some effective offers include coupons, discounts, free brochures, free demonstration, and free product sample.

Mistake #6. Not Having A Strong Call For Action

Successful direct mail marketing calls for a response in order to generate leads and sales.  A mail marketing piece without a clear and powerful call for action will not have a high response rate.

People need to be motivated and encouraged to take the next step.  If you fail to ask them to take action – buy something, call for free consultation, visit your website – they probably won’t.


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