Top 10 Things Needed In A Successful Direct Mail Campaign

These are the top ten things that you need in any direct mail marketing pieces…we’ll use a restaurant in this example:

1. Format

A picture only aids if it is compelling and aids in telling the story. NOT a picture of an empty restaurant or dining room or your logo. If you have a photo of food or people make sure it demonstrates they are enjoying themselves.

2. Headline

This is often the major flaw of the restaurant marketing I see. All of your marketing needs to have a strong, offer based headline that answers the question in the guests mind “What’s in it for me?”

One option is including the offer in your headline, and on the delivery address side. The more outrageous or bold, the better.

3. Personalization

Tests show that this will increase response by 30%. When you speak directly to your audience you’ll get better results. When you can put someone’s name in the headline it will get better results.

It also means you should segment your lists and match the message to each list.

Existing guests should get a different mailing than those that came from a purchased list. It’s easier to get existing guests to come back to celebrate their birthday and as a result it requires less sales effort. Often a well designed postcard is good enough.

However with a new guest that hasn’t visited your restaurant before it requires more sales effort. That’s hard to do effectively with one postcard. That’s why I advocate a full blown sales letter with first class stamp with the personalized approach.

4. Call to Action

You need to give them a specific direction. Tell them exactly what to do and how to do it.

Sometimes this is combined it with the deadline below. “Bring in the enclosed certificate before XXX to receive your FREE Dinner “.

If you are mailing to a cold list of people that have not been to restaurant before you should give them directions. That’s why you should include a map to your restaurant on the back of the certificate so people end up somewhere else when they intended to come to your restaurant.

5. Story

When you justify your offer, typically your response will go up. Engage the reader. Use your own voice, as if you were talking to a familiar friend. Talk about how your restaurant is different/better than all the other options available to them what makes you standout, unique.

The reason is that once they try your restaurant you know they’ll come back. It saves you hiring some fancy New York advertising agency. It doesn’t have to be a complicated reason you just need one.

6. Deadline

Everything has deadlines to need a valid offer. I recommend you feature an expiry date in large print and underlined, designed to stand out in the middle of the postcard. On a birthday anytime during their birthday month is usually very effective.

7. Offer

Test until you find a couple of offers that make people want to respond. Keep in mind the long term value of a customer. If it costs you a $10 offer ($3.50 if you consider you are only paying for the food) to get a new customer, it’s still worth it.

Once you have them in your database, you can get them onto the newsletter list and get them coming back again and again. Once they are on your database and a regular guest it shouldn’t take as big of an offer to get them to come in.

8. Testimonials

What others say about you is at least 10 times more believable than what you say about yourself. Use testimonials on all of your restaurant’s marketing. Why keep your happy guests’ positive opinion of you a secret?

9. Ability to Track Response

Make sure you keep detailed numbers for all your promotions. Not having accurate statistics may mean that you are making marketing decisions on emotion rather than the facts. That is a problem if you make decisions based on a few people instead of your overall results.

Track each of your restaurant’s marketing pieces using the same formula each time. Track the changes you make to each subsequent piece, making only one change at a time so you know what works and what doesn’t.

Once you find something that works, keep using it until you notice a change in response.

10. Guarantee

Come up with a big, bold and solid guarantee as a marketing selling point. If a customer is unhappy it’s in your best interest to make the customer happy anyway. By promoting a guarantee you just get added mileage from something you would have done anyway.

As long as you are providing a good quality product the amount of people that will take advantage of you are very small compared to the benefits of using it in your restaurant’s marketing material.

Direct Marketing Address Lists – Taking Marketing to New Heights

Marketing is undoubtedly one the most influential functions of any business. A company may have all the requisite tools to deliver the best in the league; however, without effective marketing you cannot expect any rise in profits. Most companies spend a fortune of their income on marketing their products and services, and even after their best efforts, not all marketing campaigns are successful. Today, in this post-recession era, companies are still recovering from the cash crisis making it extremely difficult for them to manage their marketing costs. This is where direct marketing can be of great use.The main USP of direct marketing is its cost. Unlike traditional methods of marketing, direct marketing does not burn a hole in your pocket. Direct marketing uses address lists collated on the basis of people’s interests, financial backgrounds, purchase history, line of business, and other such parameters. Using an appropriate address list for your marketing needs means that only those people will be targeted who have shown interest in the category of your product or service, or have been associated with it in any way. Using direct marketing not only reduces marketing cost by a great deal; it is also more effectual than the traditional ways of marketing.When planning a direct marketing campaign for your organization, the first thing you need to take care of is the address lists. To buy a mailing list, you need to find a reputed list generation firm. These firms specialize in generating leads for almost every line of business using several names databases, social networking sites, and other tools. Although you can easily find several companies offering lead generation services, there are a few things you need to consider when you buy a mailing list.The foremost factor to look into is the date the list was generated or last updated. This is extremely critical as an outdated leads may be of no good for your company. People often change their contact details and other credentials making it absolutely mandatory for the lists to be updated on a frequent basis. Secondly, you should also make sure that the company you are buying the mailing list from has prior experience in serving clients from your line of business. You may also go through the testimonials of the company’s previous and existing clients to get a fair idea about the level of competency the company has.

Pay Per Click Marketing – Tremendous Success Or Tremendous Failure?

Unless you have been under a rock (or been completely uninvolved with internet marketing) you are probably aware of a little thing called pay per click (PPC). This marketing method has probably been responsible for more instant internet millionaires than any other method on the internet. I know that may seem like a bold statement, but let me explain why.

PPC marketing does one thing that virtually no other internet marketing method can do… it provides direct and immediate access to a highly targeted crowd of web surfers. There is no waiting around for SEO to build your rank in the search engines, or for article marketing to reach a significant enough level to really start driving traffic. With PPC the effects are immediate.

What that does for an internet marketer is amazing. Direct and immediate access to laser targeted customers means direct and immediate results. In other words you can set up a PPC Marketing Campaign today and have a check to cash by tomorrow. At this point you are probably saying something like: “But if it is so great why isn’t everyone doing it?”

That is a great question. The answer is actually fairly simple. First and foremost is that most people know nothing about internet marketing, so they know nothing about PPC marketing. Obviously if you have never heard about it you can’t do it right? The next reason is that many people that are aware of PPC are also aware of its dangers. The pay per click model of internet marketing can be very expensive. Nowadays most people are finding it difficult to get any clicks much under 30 cents. A lot of businesses have to pay 75 cents and up (in fact up to about $10 per click).

Of course It may seem like 30 cents is not much money on the face of it, but consider that for many internet ventures a 1% conversion rate is considered to be pretty good. That means that if you get 300 clicks only 3 of those people will become paying customers. This means that you will have spent $90 to get three sales, or $30 for each paying customer. This makes the math very simple. If the product you are selling costs $30 or less you are in trouble. If the product costs $30 or more then you are doing okay.

What makes PPC marketing even more tricky is that newcomers will often struggle to even get a 1% conversion ratio. In fact I have seen many conversion ratios as low as.0001… that would mean you would need 10000 clicks to get 1 sale. Of course that is pretty extreme, but the point is that the pay per click world can cost you a small fortune if you are not careful, do not educate yourself, and do not take the time to carefully optimized your PPC Marketing campaign.