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Direct mail

 

Disciplines > Sales > Prospecting > Direct mail

Description | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Carefully develop and write marketing material that will appeal to your prospective audience.

Provide clear and easy contact information, such as:

  • Web address
  • Email address
  • Fax address
  • Free phone number
  • Pre-paid postcard

Send it through the mail or otherwise deliver it to their door.

Make sure that all calls and messages go to a specialized location that can respond rapidly and knowledgeably. Quickly follow up on all responses.

You can do the same with email, although do be careful with the image that is created in all cases.

Example

An office cleaning company has a national campaign of sending agency-designed material to target companies. All responses are tracked, including those that come through a specially set up web page. Sales people call and visit all respondents.

A double-glazing company hand-delivers leaflets to houses in the local area where they are doing work.

Discussion

Direct mail is not the method of choice for all businesses, but if you want a very wide coverage, it can be a perfectly acceptable method.

Direct mail is the equivalent of cold calling as it is targeted at people who may well have no interest, and hence has a very high rejection rate. It is thus important that the cost of mailing is more than offset by the profit from the leads that it gives.

Response rates can be increased by the use of promotions such as entering respondents for a draw and may making the material supplied useful or interesting.

The relatively high numbers of items printed for a large campaign requires that careful design and proof reading are critical activities. You do not want to give potential customers evidence of shoddy work!

Direct mail can cause a negative response and thus should be used carefully. The paper version is often called 'bumph' (from 'bum fodder') and the electronic version is called 'spam'. Most direct mail is not read and goes straight to the bin.

See also

Use of Language

 

Sales Books

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