In this modern digital age, you may think that print media has gone the way of the dinosaur—but you’d be wrong. Print media is still relevant and still effective; people do still read newspapers and magazines, and catalogues, product brochures, and coupon booklets have always been popular. Direct mail is especially effective because receivers actually have to handle it, making them more likely to take a look at it on their way back from the mailbox. It’s a great way to entice leads to visit your website, encourage them to place an order online or browse your online store, and collect their contact information. So how do you launch a successful print media campaign? Here are some tips.
Make it Personal
When launching a direct mailing campaign, don’t use the “spray and pray” approach, where you generalize your content to try and reach as many people as possible. The trick is to personalize your content for the customer and not to produce what people will immediately perceive as “junk mail.” You should know who your ideal customers are and what needs they have, and market specifically to that kind of person. If the customer feels you are speaking directly to them and addressing their needs, they’ll be less likely to just throw your print media in the trash.
Meet Your Market
But how do you get to know your customers well enough to connect with them on such a personal level? One method is by using forms on your website and at industry conventions to collect information. Besides asking prospects for their home address and e-mail address, ask for their birthday (minus the year, so you can send them a personalized coupon or special offer) and their industry (so you can send targeted messages).
If you want to stand out and make things more fun, consider adding a silly question like “Rocky Road or Peanut Brittle?” (if you run an ice cream shop) or “Do you prefer ‘beef up’ or ‘get swole’?” (if you own a gym). Add an “other” option and provide a space for them to write their own answer; this shows you actually care about their opinion. A good all-purpose question is “What’s your favorite ‘80s song?” because it can be tailored to almost any industry. Give them silly choices like “Hungry Like the Wolf” by Duran Duran if you’re a catering company, or “I Ran (So Far Away)” by Flock of Seagulls if your brand sells athletic shoes.
Other businesses may benefit from being strictly professional. An accounting company might ask more straightforward questions like “How often have you done your own taxes?” and “What made you choose to have your taxes done by an accountant this year?” A massage therapist might ask “What’s your favorite essential oil?” and “What are your goals for your massage therapy?” The point is to go beyond the prospect’s contact information and learn something about them as an individual—preferably something that will help you serve them better as a customer.
Celebrate Your Wins
Another way to relate to your customers is by celebrating your wins—or better yet, your customers’ wins. Sharing customer success stories in your marketing materials shows that your company cares about the people it caters to and that your products or services are truly worth their salt. Tell the success stories of people whose experiences your customers can relate to, and focus on ways to show potential customers the true value your business provides through both words and relevant images.
Represent Yourself Properly
Once you’ve learned more about who your potential customers are, it’s time to think about what kind of business you run and what kind of image you want to project. Think about things like color and texture when choosing your print materials; it may seem out-there, but details like these can actually communicate a lot about the type of company you are and about the experience your clients and customers can expect to have if they use your products or services. A thick, glossy paper with embossed text says something different than a soft, slightly textured paper with soothing colors. Choose your print materials with the mission and message of your business in mind.
If you’re sending out mailers, do your best to be eye-catching so your mailer doesn’t immediately get dismissed as junk mail. You can accomplish this through large text, textured paper, a conspicuous and complementary color scheme, and large, high-quality imagery. (Ironically, you can also achieve an eye-catching effect by using a large amount of blank space around a short, simple message.) To add value to your mailer and further incentivize your customer, add a punch-out gift card or a perforated coupon, or include a coupon code or a QR code for your online store.
Sell Locally, Think Locally
When placing local advertisements, try to imbue them with a local vibe by using location-specific references, imagery, and messaging. “Buy Local” movements are rapidly gaining traction all across the country, and people respond well to messaging that feels relevant to their lives and the area they live in. For great examples of this, check out some of the local marketing strategies of Pal’s Sudden Service, a beloved and highly successful fast food franchise specific to the Tri-Cities metro region in northeast Tennessee.
Sell it With Signage
If your company has a physical location, the design and messaging of your in-store signage is a great way to share information, direct traffic to and throughout the store, entice patrons to buy with a call to action, and even to set a mood that’s on-brand with the kind of products or services you provide. A massage therapy office could use a sign that clearly points the way to the bathroom/changing room, a welcome sign at the door with soothing colors and imagery, and a friendly-looking sign asking patrons and visitors to please keep their voices down. A children’s clothing store might use fun, brightly colored signage throughout that directs customers to sizes/age groups and showcases special deals or new designers.
As you can see, the possibilities for print media marketing are almost endless. Ready to see what print marketing can do for your business? Give Absolute Holdings Group a call to find out how our print media specialists can help you pump up your sales by promoting your brand. We’re here to help!