How to run direct marketing campaigns

According to Central Mailing’s Direct Mail Statistics 2013, 48 per cent of the UK population responded to a direct mail piece they received in the past year.

Whether postal-, phone- or email-based, the power of direct marketing has been proven time and again. And you don’t need to be a marketing expert to harness its potential for your company.

Pick out customer profiles

Marketers begin by drilling down into their database, creating profiles of their existing customers. This profiling process helps hone and target their campaign’s ‘message’ to appeal to customers’ identified needs and ‘pains’.

Action plan

Analyse your current customer database – or your accounts if you don’t have a dedicated database:

  • Identify commonalities between existing customers. For instance, size, turnover, industry type and so forth.
  • These similarities can be used to inform your campaign – its voice, its angle and its offer – so you can target those specific customer types that are known to engage with your products/services.

Sourcing new clients

The most important part of your campaign is generating new business leads:

  • Use market research and your products/services’ USP to identify potentially untapped sectors; and
  • Spot gaps where you might be able to extend your reach and use direct marketing on a small-scale basis initially to identify potential new areas ripe for exploitation.

Producing the campaign

With customer profiles and markets identified, it’s time to create your actual campaign. Unless you feel you have the appropriate skill set in-house to produce it, source a reputable copywriter and designer for your direct mailers (plus printer if you are undertaking a direct mail campaign).

There are a variety of platforms available online for sourcing individual creatives such as People Per Hour – or you may prefer to approach a reputable content/marketing agency to do the work for you.

Don’t Scrimp on costs

How your message is actually presented to a potential customer is vital – first impressions count, plus a great copywriter can hone your messaging even further.

Monitor what interest your campaign generates and collate campaign data for post-campaign analysis.

Julie Knight is founder and MD of Marketscan.

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