The marketer’s instinct can be to skip directly to a sales pitch, but it’s very important to structure your direct mail campaign into three parts. This series will describe the phases of a successful strategy: education, persuasion, and then selling.
Educating customers is a series of introductions:
- Introduce yourself. Are you a new company? Existing company expanding business areas? Or an established company that may simply be new to a specific individual? The customer’s awareness of you can be crucial to develop a frame of reference: the next time they see any of your marketing – whether a piece of direct mail or anything else – you are already familiar to them.
- Introduce a new-to-you product. Most products aren’t completely new to the world, but your business could be starting to offer something you’ve never offered before. For example, an exciting new app allowing your credit union to offer more convenient services to your customers. Of course many such apps exist, but the new service is a dual opportunity: first to inform potential customers about the new service, but also to reach out to existing customers via direct mail to ensure their awareness that a company they already know and trust is providing this new service. They are then less likely to go looking for someone new to meet their needs.
- Introduce a new product. Customers occasionally have problems and they don’t even realize the solutions are out there – e.g. auto re-financing. New products may simply not be on their radar, and you want to be the helpful company that puts it there. Your marketing should be a resource of thorough and fair information about new services that may be tremendously helpful to them.
One of direct mail’s biggest strengths is that people read it in their own space and at their own pace. This enables copy that includes a lot more information that is valuable to your customer, which they can read more slowly and carefully. In addition to building trust, it leaves your customer with the sense that you will continue to give them important, valuable information fairly and without being obnoxious or pushy. Establishing trust with your customers is crucial before moving on to the persuasion and selling phases.
If you feel like the process is too drawn-out, you can combine all three phases in a single direct mail piece. This is particularly true if you plan to use a longer mailer or a sales letter: you have ample space to guide your prospects through education and trust building, persuasion, and finally closing the sale. You can also use repeated impressions to build brand awareness alongside your case – it all depends on the needs of your business.
Want to learn more? Contact us and we’ll help you create a direct mail campaign that turns your prospects into customers via education.