Every Door Direct Mail allows you to get very low postage rates. To do this, the requirements are simple. The cards have to be bundled with facing slips and submitted with easy to create paperwork. You have to bring them directly to the post office delivering the cards, up to 5000 per post office per day, or be submitted through traditional direct mail routes by a permit holder. Finally, they have to be the proper size. This changed recently, it used to be a standard flat, but now it is a special EDDM size.
The EDDM postcards have to be:
1. Taller than 6 1/8″ on the short side
Longer than 10 1/2″ on the long side.
2. AND can’t be larger than 12″ by 15″.
There are some other rules about thickness and weight, but most likely won’t apply to mailing a postcard. Notice the requirements state “OR.” You don’t have to mail something that is both taller than 6.125″ and longer than 10.5″, it just has to be one or the other.
The bigger question is…
What size SHOULD my Every Door Direct Mail piece be?
That’s easy, as large as appropriate for your business and budget. Size makes EDDM postcards more noticeable, but doing a postcard that is 12″ by 15″ might be a tad much if you’re not promoting a giant sale at a retail store, car dealership, or other event or business where bigger is almost always better.
The good thing is, the smaller sizes are still pretty big. We usually recommend 6.25″ by 9″, 6.25″ by 11″, or 8.5″ by 11″. This is a big postcard in the mailbox. It literally stands up above the smaller mail, and because it’s a card, it stands out over flimsy coupon books.
If you’re just indecisive, don’t want to wade through the requirements, or like to do things the easy way, then go for the 6.25″ by 9″ Every Door Direct Mail Postcard. It’s big, it stands out, and it gets attention.
What size do you mail?
If you read our posts about design, you’ll notice a a few key points that repeat. You want a clear message, a catchy headline and visual layout, you want to add some type of value, and you want to clearly instruct customers what they should do next if interested.
The Cusano’s Baking Company postcard does all of that. The design is clean, it blends the classic looking fonts and logo and modern layout seamlessly. They took a chance with those fonts. You’ll often here designers say script fonts are too hard to read, but they didn’t go overboard with a handwritten font, and they kept it consistent. There’s not too many fonts going on.
Of course, they put the headline on the back. You may not be able to pull that off, because headlines are usually what gets people to look. Businesses selling food don’t have that problem. The use of reds and the pictures of bread steal the show. I have to be honest, I originally picked up this postcard to look at it because of the tasty looking bread. It was before lunch, but who am I kidding? We’re always hungry around here. Read the rest of this entry »
How can a insurance agent or agency use direct mail?
We all know that sending a note or postcard to clients or potential clients can be an effective way to get them to call you and renew or sign up for a policy. Here’s something you may not know. By using professional mailing service providers, you can save almost twenty cents per mailer on postage by mailing the cards for you. All you need is to mail at least 200 letters or postcards at a time.
How does direct mail for insurance sales work?
All you have to do to get a direct mailer out for your insurance company is prepare artwork, get it printed, figure out who you want to mail to, and get them to the post office… Easy right? Wait, that’s a lot to handle when your trying to run your day to day business too. That’s why you find a printer who does the design and mailing in house. You don’t need the hassle and extra expense of dealing with all of these parts or a bunch of different companies.
Design Process – Provide them a logo and a picture, and they will design the postcard for your needs. Look at their previous designs, are they making stuff that looks bad, does it look like art work, or does it look like effectively designed, simply communicated marketing pieces? Samples are usually a good way to determine if you will get effective design. The message should be simple, an announcement, a special, some humor or information. Don’t for get the headline and call to action. Once the artist lays out the piece with your information, they will send you a “proof” which you will then review and approve or instruct them make changes to it. There’s usually 1-2 rounds of changes, and then it goes to print.
Mailing List Selection – If you have list of current customers great, this is often overlooked. You can sell them more services, saving both of you time and money. It’s also good for positive brand exposure, just reaching out to say Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays or some other greeting. If they feel good about you, they’re more likely to renew and refer.
If you don’t have a list that you want to target. Focus on one product, then target a group that will be most likely to respond, buy from you, and like your service. You figure this out by looking at your current customers and determining which factors are associated with their buying from you (income, home ownership, etc). If you work in a demographically homogenous area, you may want to think about skipping the list and doing Every Door Direct Mail. If your area has various income levels in small areas or high rates of renters to owners, you’ll set up some guidelines and your mailing company can help you with a list.
If you’re using a professional service for your mailing, then you’ll get the savings from printing and mailing in bulk and you completed your part. Now you can go back to calling and beating the pavement, until the leads start coming to you.
Mountain Dew recently followed a long line of companies who misused advertising to accidentally offend people. As a small business owner, you’re not concerned with big named celebrities pasts, but there are lessons to be learned from this debacle. Do you think that you can do better at reaching out to new people? We think you can. Appealing to the needs and desires of potential customers is more connected to other identifying demographics than it is to the color of their skin.
Get to know your customers and potential customers. Take the time to study the demographics, but more, start conversations with potential customers. You can’t just pitch your product with language you hear or styles a group uses. Mimicking the desired customer base’s characteristics is just as ineffective when used from economic demographics or location as it is when using race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or nationality, it’s just not as offensive. This type of message or imagery in a video or printed postcard is going to be viewed as pandering or, worse, as mockery or ridicule. Read the rest of this entry »
Staring with a larger card for an Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) campaign, the possibilities are infinite. What can you say? What should you say? Sometimes with a large space to fill, there is the temptation to put anything and everything on the card. However, this can be too much information for the typical consumer to process. Many advertisers fall into the trap of thinking that varying and changing their message will relieve boredom and keep buyers interested. If you study the most successful companies like Coke, Apple, or GM, you’ll see that they carefully continue to hone and craft and the same basic message over and over again. Everyone knows that Maytag stands for reliability. These companies stick to the point and drive that point home with a call to action. There is an important lesson there for EDDM marketers too.
4 Points of Good Every Door Direct Mail/EDDM Design:
1) Pick a theme or promotion for your mailing. Is it a sale, grand opening, event or particular product or service? This decision basically sets the purpose for your EDDM campaign. Making it a single purpose will be more effective than a general “brain dump” of “here we are and here’s our entire menu of products and services.” Read the rest of this entry »
Creativity is free, the ROI is always $return-$0/$0 (yes, I just divided by zero), but you need to inspire it and use it. So many people I talk to are afraid to embrace a good idea over bland and reused ones. This article is focused on postcard copy and design, but it works for all marketing and advertising.
Creativity can get the attention of many and really inspire people to listen. By doing something imaginative with a postcard, you can increase results. This is one way to make your mailer more creative, there are other imaginative processes you can use. Read the rest of this entry »
I recently got this Envelope, addressed to the “Marketing Manager,” whoever that is. Apparently, Google has realized the limitations of pay per click advertising, that you just can’t get enough people to raise their hands to buy from you, no matter how much exposure you have or clicks you get. We use PPC, but it has its limits. Good marketing, whether online, in the mail, or out on the town requires proper targeting and good copy.
Here’s some advice to one of the richest, most successful companies in the world as they enter into the direct mail world. Read the rest of this entry »
Last time, we talked about the very basics of setting up a simple loyalty program or rewards system for improving your sales. You want to focus your advertising on the people most likely to buy from you. The people most likely to buy are those that have already bought from you and indicated they want to buy again. The idea is if you get information from your customers, you can build trust and loyalty by communicating with them and giving them something that is more valuable to them then it costs you.
A problem that most small business owners face is balancing discounts with profits. If you discount sales, you are losing money. It’s one thing to use a single item to get someone in the door to sell them more full priced items, but business can go south quickly if your customers are only buying discounted items.
With a creative or enticing idea, you can get a lot of exposure promoting something special. There’s so many coupons and “specials” out there, people really remember when a business does something truly special. People who hear or read about your event or special are going to see it and remember you, even if some of those people do not attend. It’s a great way to help people to remember your business and what you do.
Here’s some ideas of things to promote that don’t involve discounted your products:
Throw a party! This should be something exciting, maybe some entertainment or a special speaker, it should fit your business and encourage buying but offer real value to the customer. The cost of an entertainer or other event will often be less than the cost of discounting, it’s also a fixed cost so you can plan ahead. Contests are great because they don’t cost money to hire someone special, you should invest a little to make the event special with appropriate signs and decorations.
To entice your loyal customers, use a special time or place where loyal customers can get access to something that adds value. It can be closed event, just for your loyal customers, or an open event where anyone can go but there’s something special for your loyalty program members. You can have an event for the public, but give people a chance for extras by being part of your loyalty program. Either way, you both encourage more people to sign up and reward members.
Group Discounts from other businesses
This is my favorite one because it doesn’t cost you a dime.
You have this list of people that trust you and your business. You can easily convince another business to offer a discount to your list of people. Just make sure that you trust this business. You don’t want to tell your customers to try out this other business and then have them get bad service. You probably have businesses to which you are loyal. Talk to the owners and managers, see if they are interested. You can get the benefit of getting your brand in front of your customers, being on their side.
Take Advantage of Bulk Discounts for added value at your location or through your service
You can hire a photographer, mobile car wash, caterer, or other service to come to your location and provide their service at a discounted bulk rate. This can also be a benefit for your employees too! Your best customers and your employees will be happy that they got the service for free. Individually, they would have to pay a lot more than you would pay for the group. Imagine the loyalty you’ll create when a family can get professional photographs with dinner or get their car washed while they talk to you about car insurance with you. Instead of a service, you may look into something you can buy in bulk fairly inexpensively, that you can give away. You can attract a lot of people, build long term relationships with your customers, and do so inexpensively by taking advantage of bulk discounts.
Be creative, there are many things you can do to improve loyalty that don’t cost a lot of money. What do you do?
What is a loyalty or rewards program?
A Loyalty or rewards program is used to get information from customers and provide the customers with a special privilege or promotion. The goal is to get your customers to buy more often. This can be as simple as a card that gets stamped each time they use it until they fill it up for redemption. It can be a more complex computerized system with a points system and custom rewards. Even if you can’t do something fancy, you should be doing something to build loyalty with your customers.
How can a loyalty or rewards program help my business?
Loyalty Rewards programs are a great way to get people to opt in to receiving communication from your business, get your customers to feel engaged with your business, and get them buying more from you. The most simple program could still provide you with three valuable results. Read the rest of this entry »
One of the key benefits of print and direct mail is that it can be tracked. A local or toll free number can be used to track responses. By placing a unique phone number on a postcard, you can see how many people call that number. By tracking the calls, you can compare the number of calls to the number of cards mailed out. This is expressed as a percentage. You can find this number out by dividing the number of calls by the quantity mailed.
Example: 100 ÷ 1000 = 10%
Tracking is essential. You need to know what works and what doesn’t work.
You will also be able to add up the number of people who have called multiple times or people who have requested more information on your website. This is essential for figuring out the best way to get people to buy in the future. You don’t have to be a statistician to n0tice trends in what information people ask for or how many times they call before placing an order. You may also be able to identify where people decide not to buy or stop asking for more information.
Finally, the number of customers that actually bought your product is important. Sounds obvious right? You can track where or how they bought, and how they bought to better understand the behaviors of your customers and your organizations strengths. For example: If you are putting a lot of money into promoting a certain domain name but your tracking shows that people are not clicking through, then you may want to present the domain differently or focus more on the methods that are working. If you find that people are calling in, but aren’t buying over the phone, you’ll know that you need to look at how your phone calls are being answered and which follow up techniques you are using.
Tracking is essential to your businesses, you want to know whether your advertising and sales process is working. By using special tracking phone numbers, URLs, QR codes, or other technology you will be able to optimize how your money is spent and improve productivity of your employees. It’s actually very easy to implement and a little data goes a long way to demonstrate the strengths and weaknesses of your business. If you need help implementing tracking numbers or QR codes, don’t worry, SonicPrint.com can help you.