Reach More Customers With Direct Marketing

Direct marketing, including direct mail, telemarketing and email marketing, is the most traditional and cost effective form of advertising. While television and radio advertisements have the ability to bring in a lot of business, they are expensive and cannot target an ultra-specific audience. Direct marketing, however, has the ability to focus on a specific group of people and present them messages tailored distinctively for them.

Direct marketing encompasses the traditional method of direct mail, as well as telemarketing. Email marketing is also a very low cost method of advertising that is sent to consumers directly. In an effort to cut down on waste and build a customer base, direct marketing requires a significant amount of research. Defining your target audience will help you streamline your message and send materials directly to those folks, instead of blanketing a region with the same, generic message. This research is an ongoing process, and should be constantly tweaked as a result of the response you receive.

The goal of direct marketing is simple: Turn people into customers through a series of advertisements that peak their interest. Peaking their interest can be a challenging task. Direct mail can be seen as “junk mail” and thrown out before it is even fully read. How often have you received “junk mail” and thrown it out before reading it? Think about what it would take for a piece of direct mail to grab your attention and cause you to read it. Put those characteristics into your direct mail. In order to grab the attention of a perspective customer, you must make your direct mail stand out. Use a simplistic, yet eye-catching, design and copy that is compelling and inspires the reader to take action.

It is easy to send out a mass email or mass direct mail campaign that encompasses a wide area of people with a picture of your product and it’s price. However, this is not the most effective way of direct marketing. Research must be done to tailor your advertisements to a select group of people. Let’s say you’re in the electronics business. About 150 of your clients and people who give feedback either in-store or online are people who regularly buy surround sound speakers. Shouldn’t your message to them specifically target their interest in surround sound speakers? Finding a group of people who show interest in a particular product makes it easy to craft a direct mail or email advertisement that peaks interest and inspires people to become either first-time or repeat customers.

The next time you are trying to figure out how to reach more people and increase your bottom line, consider the proven effective strategies of direct marketing. Putting time and effort into the proper research to craft an advertisement that is compelling will surely pay off in the long run and significantly increase your profit margin.

Benefits and Challenges of a Career in Direct Marketing

Internet or Direct marketing may be a new term in our dictionaries however it is not a new concept. Direct or Internet marketing is ‘the’ way to send a message to the customer directly through various channels that eliminate the middle men or indirect means to interact with the customer. This has been done since marketing began albeit in undefined ways and now with the advances in technology, Direct/Internet marketing has become the most preferred way to reach the customer directly to promote a product, a service, a company… a message.

Direct marketing is a preferred way of knowing how the intended product PR message is faring with the masses because the responses can be quite immediate. That is why with the increasing competitiveness in businesses and the need to reach out to the customers in a more effective manner, a career in direct or Internet marketing is a very rewarding. Everything depends on marketing and whether a product will sell or not and whether the masses will pay heed to a social awareness message or not, depends mainly on how well it has been marketed.

With the way the world is growing closer… not smaller… closer due to the internet and the ease of being able to find any sort of information online or through other channels like the mobile phone, emails on the internet, advertisements, and many more; sending a message to them directly is not a challenge. What could be better than actually communicating with your customers? The only challenge is that with many direct marketing strategies being used, people thinking of a career in direct marketing may have to resort to their creativity quite often and having that is definitely a plus.

Many people think that direct marketing is not an honest field to have a job in and that is mainly because many big and small companies and even individuals have misused the power of interacting with customers directly and flooded them with constant interactions. This has left a bad taste in customers’ mouths and most of them don’t like being contacted anymore. This makes the job quite difficult… but not impossible.

The thought that a career in direct marketing is not a good idea is right and wrong, based on where you’re looking at it from. If you plan to succumb to the unethical ways for short term but immediate profit by flooding the customers with constant messages and emails, then direct marketing may not be for you however, if you are creative and have a knack of creating relevant and quality communication, then direct or Internet marketing may just be the thing for you because that is what it is all about; effective communication.

With the amount of knowledge we can share today and the level of understanding we have towards various cultures, various age groups, and their demands, direct marketing is the best way to promote a product or a company and used effectively, this can be a very strong tool that may be difficult for the competition to beat.

If a person is interested in pursuing a career in direct or Internet marketing they need to find schools to make sure they learn the right tricks of the trade and understand the basics of this amazing phenomenon. Communication and a basic understanding of how the human mind gets motivated are the two very important tools for a direct marketer however a few other things that will be good to know are:

  • Mass media
  • Behavior change therapy
  • Qualitative and quantitative research methods
  • Marketing and communications

There are many more courses out there… you just need to find them and make the best of them to be a successful marketing person.

Direct Marketing And How To Make It Profitable During Tough Economic Times

Hi, I am a direct marketing specialist that has helped hundreds of direct marketers grow their businesses. You do not know me, but after reading my views on direct marketing during an economic slowdown, I believe it can give you business an edge in taking market share from your competitors.

Today the consumer is being financially squeezed by many economic realities. Soaring gas prices a slowing economy, and job insecurities, just to highlight a few. All this is currently having a very negative impact of the consumer’s mindset for spending. Odds are your company is also feeling the consumer’s anxiety about the future. When I talk to some of the clients I do work for, they have told me that their web sales and response rates have declined, or at best are treading water. The same holds true for the traditional mailers. They are also experiencing consumer pessimism that is reflected in lower response rates.

OK, so does this mean that you have to hunker down and accept all this as the reality of the times for doing business? Absolutely not …But most direct marketers unfortunately will. The enlightened few will view it differently and become proactive, and embrace the challenges.

“Keep on doing what your doing in direct marketing and you’ll keep on getting what your getting in declining sales and profits”

Today savvy direct marketer realizes that the status quo of what worked during the good times isn’t working so well anymore. Hundreds of thousand of companies are competing on the web and via traditional direct mail for the consumer’s discretionary income. Many are destined to fail. Survival of the fittest is being played out, and the marketers who DO NOT make direct marketing refinements will become extinct.

So exactly what can you do to help guarantee that our company not only survives, but also takes market share from the competition?

To begin with you must make absolutely sure that your direct marketing efforts utilize all the responsive techniques that have prove to drive sales. Direct marketing is paying explicit attention to the details of the business, especially now. The day of “lets run it up the flag pole and see how it flies” is long gone. Today it is making positively sure that you have the three basic RIGHTS of direct response in place, or your company is destined to fail.

The three basic RIGHTS that must be in place are:

RIGHT #1: You must have the right copy that talks to the customer NOT at them. It must emotionally engage them and give them compelling benefits of your products and how it will help THEM. Does your copy utilize “YOU” or “YOUR” as much as is feasible? Does each product have a benefit headline? Do you utilize words (under seven letters is best) that the customer will actually understand? Do you answer all the questions in the customer’s mind that could be a potential roadblock to a sale? It’s your job to remove all the roadblocks that would deter a response.

RIGHT #2: The right creative, teamed with the right colors and graphics are essential to getting a response. Does your creative and graphics actually help to sell the product, or do they detract from it? Do the photos you use reflect you’re demographic, and do they add to the enhancement of the copy in obtaining a response? Do the colors you use on your site, or in your mail pieces turn on response emotions or do they turn them off? Certain colors evoke specific feelings; this should not be left to chance. The type you use, and how it is displayed directly affects sales. Type that is NOT black, or that is reversing out of a background has statistically proven in tests to be harder to read, and slower to comprehend which is a roadblock to a sale. Are you using Sans Serif type in your electronic marketing? It is easier to read on a computer screen. The last thing you want is for a potential customer to click away because they can’t read your type or it is to small in point size.

RIGHT#3: The right product with the right prices is vital. Customers are like a peregrine falcons. They scan multiple sites and catalogs to find the right product that is priced right, with the right shipping charge, and right guarantee. 30% (or more!) of the customers on your file are on your competitors files. Products priced right? Do you offer two for pricing? If you have exclusive proprietary products do you note it? Do you offer incentives for large orders, for example like free shipping, a free gift, or bonus coupons for future orders? Do you use testimonials about your products or company to melt away the customer’s cynicism?

If you get all three of the RIGHTS listed above right your chances of getting the response is almost guaranteed. If you miss just one of the RIGHTS it can be a no sale and your clicked away, or your mail piece is resigned to the circular file.

Hey I do not have all the answers, but I have been totally involved in the direct marketing for over three decades. I have helped hundreds of direct marketers grow their businesses and profits. I know how to write responsive copy that moves people, and in turn moves sales. I know how to make sure all the RIGHTS are in place, so as to help guarantee a response. I know what is needed creatively from a direct marketing standpoint to move a customer to take action and respond.
Questions for YOU?

Are your sales at this time where you want them to be? Are you happy with your direct response results? Are you 100% sure your have done everything to employ proven direct marketing principles to grow your business and assure it’s future?

If you cannot definitely say “YES” to these questions, they maybe we should have a chat.