ListAbility's Direct Marketing Blog

Direct Mail is Highly Effective For Back-to-School Promotions

Posted by Carol Arnold on Tue, Jul 23, 2013 @ 10:27 AM

direct mail is highly effective to market for the back to school season.Tis the season for families to prepare for the new school year and that means shopping and spending money!

According to the National Retail Federation, back to school is the second biggest shopping season after the winter holidays.

Don't miss the opportunity to promote your business with targeted direct marketing

Retailers need to execute smart marketing strategies to capture their fair share of the nearly $690 spent by the average family on their children’s school gear. Direct mail, targeted to families with school aged children, is highly effective. Coupons, special offers and information about products and services can be delivered to right to their doorstep.

The new school year offers a fresh start – and families help by sending their students off with a wide range of new clothes, school supplies and electronics. In addition they spend on a wide range of sporting goods and services like haircuts. The college bound families shop to spiff up dorm rooms and student apartments.

Parents also plan ahead for other less traditional services for the coming school year. These can include tutoring, college prep, after school programs and private coaches.

When using targeted direct mail marketing, retailers and service providers can deliver postcards, flyers and brochures into the homes of their best potential clients. Targeted mailing lists can be pulled based on children’s age, household income and many more demographics.

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the total population of kids and adults in school at 79 million - roughly one quarter of the total population. You have a lot of options when you pull a mail list – to either cast a broad net, or focus in on families with specific characteristics.

The shopping season doesn’t end in August and September on the first day of school! Many families are spreading out some of their purchase decisions.  You should plan to extend direct mail marketing into the fall, especially for clothing, technology and services.

ListAbility’s Family Masterfile Mailing List has selection criteria that you can use to truly focus your mailing – ensuring that you get your best return on your investment.

ListAbility is a mailing list broker with the expertise and quality data to guide you through the process of obtaining a highly targeted mailing list. A better list will pay dividends with the savings you garner in printing and postage – to say nothing of getting noticed by the right people!

Tags: direct marketing list strategies, direct mail marketing, direct mail campaigns, consumer mailing list, direct mail advertising, retail promotions

Direct Mail is Still a Powerhouse to Find New College Students

Posted by Carol Arnold on Mon, Jan 14, 2013 @ 02:58 PM

adult college student in classCollege marketing campaigns are becoming more important in the quest to attract new, non-traditional students in today’s competitive landscape.

Direct mail marketing is an excellent way for acquiring new students for higher education classrooms. This is particularly effective when reaching out into the community to market to adult learners, bringing in new people to your programs and filling classrooms.

Proactively reaching out to people enables you to catch their attention and refer them over to your web site or social media to learn more.

Your approach to choosing who should receive your information depends on the education programs you are promoting.

Recommended Direct Marketing Steps for Night School, Continuing Education, Community Enrichment and Other General Adult Educational Programs

The first step will be to determine WHERE you want to mail.

Some schools will pick out the areas where they currently have the highest concentration of students. Others will target areas where they want to grow visibility. Select zip codes or postal carrier routes which are smaller. Maybe a distance or drive-time radius would work for you.

The next step will be to choose WHO you want to mail to. Two different approaches are commonly used.

  1. Select a demographic target – such as age, income, gender or marital status
  2. Blanket the community – mail to all households in your target geography

Direct marketing gives you power to target people based on their unique demographics. These can include education level, occupation, age, marital status, interests and many other attributes. It is a proven marketing channel for attracting new students.

You can always decide to split your target audience to test which segments respond best, and what type of mail piece (brochure, catalog, post card) works best for your student marketing.

This is a good time to reach outside your existing student data base to inform people about the programs you offer.

ListAbility has the expertise to guide you through the process of obtaining a highly targeted mailing or email list. A better list will pay dividends when getting your school noticed by the right people. In addition, accurate lists will garner savings with reduced printing and postage costs.

Tags: mailing list brokers, direct mail marketing, direct mail advertising, marketing college programs

Cost Effective Targeted Direct Mail versus Every Door Direct Mail

Posted by Carol Arnold on Mon, Apr 16, 2012 @ 01:42 PM

archer targetThe postal service is creating buzz and excitement with their Every Door Direct Mail ads on TV.

No list! Drop your mail off at the post office! What could be easier?

The reality isn’t quite that simple. The mail piece has to fit their specification of a flat; you calculate the quantities and bundle into packages of 100. If you are mailing to 5 towns, you will have to take your mail  to each of the 5 post offices, which could end up taking an entire day!

But the cost savings is there, right? Only 14½ cents per piece for postage! You can go onto the map at the postal website and pick out the carrier routes you think you want to deliver to, and it will go to every single address.

What if every single person isn’t a potential customer?

If you are an Ice Cream Stand, Pizza or take-out Chinese restaurant, by all means, get your menu and coupons out to everyone! What about more specialized businesses? Renters and Condominium owners may not be good targets for your landscaping business. A high end jewelry store might not want traffic from lower and middle income households.

Mailing to everyone, when only some are qualified can actually limit your reach. You will be spending money on postage and printing for people whom you are fairly sure will never buy your product. Even worse, they may waste your sales people’s valuable time.

Here is an example I came across the other day when an agency asked about a mailing for their client who is a pediatrician: The doctor had seen the ads on TV and asked about the Every Door Direct Mail program to help build his business.

We ran the numbers and found there were about 41,000 households in his service area of 5 towns on the south shore of Boston.

Using a targeted mailing list, we discovered that only 15,340 of the 41,000 households have children. To further target the mailing list, we took a look at some additional qualifiers. The practice would rather have younger children, and families with an income that would be more comfortable paying mdical bills.

5,212 families ended up on the qualified mailing list using the selections:  Children Age 0-12 and Household Income of $40K+

Additional qualifiers could include Length of Residence or Number of Children. You could also specify that the piece be addressed to the women (where present).

A better mailing list will pay dividends by helping you go get noticed by the right people!

ListAbility is a mailing list broker with the expertise and quality data to guide you through the process of obtaining a highly targeted mailing, telemarketing or email list. A better list will pay dividends with the savings you garner in printing and postage – to say nothing of getting noticed by the right people!

 

Tags: direct marketing list strategies, mailing list brokers, USPS Services, direct mail marketing, direct mail, direct mail campaigns, consumer mailing lists, direct mail advertising, Every Door Direct Mail

Direct Mail Advertising continues to be a powerful marketing channel

Posted by Chris Dyer on Fri, Mar 02, 2012 @ 10:54 AM

Many people would be surprised to read that the US Postal Service ended their fiscal year 2011 with a volume increase of 2 billion pieces of standard class mail. This 2.6% increase comes in spite of the barrage of negative media coverage. Standard mail is the primary mail service for Direct Mail Advertisers.

                  The Direct Marketing Association’s Statistical Fact Book states that
                     US marketers send over 90 billion pieces of direct mail per year!

What does this mean? The volume increase sends a clear message:

                                              Direct Mail Marketing still works
!

My advice to Marketers, especially younger marketers, is to incorporate a multi-channel strategy when developing their marketing programs. And that should include direct mail.

When planning a direct mail campaign, there are many options to consider. Some methods are enduring, and have been used for many years by the best direct marketers in the world.

Here are some considerations to keep in mind:

  • A strong offer or promotion is probably the most important element for all direct mail advertising campaigns.

  • Select an updated and accurate mailing list that has been targeted to recipients considered most likely to respond positively to your offer.

  • Consider making your promotion time sensitive to generate urgency.

  • Testimonials or a guarantee can be effective, depending on your product.

  • Copy and graphics focusing on the people you are sending to can increase results exponentially and easily justify the cost of using multiple versions. For example, use a different message for young adults than you do for seniors. Ask your printer about “variable print capabilities”.

  • The use of Digital Printing can bring increased capabilities for personalization. These can include PURLS (Personalized URLs) which set up individual web pages for your prospects to key in, and QR Codes (Quick Response) that can be read by a smart phone to link to a special marketing page on the web.

  • Postage is a large part of any direct mailing job.  Make sure your mail list is certified and processed to get the highest postal discounts for automation.

  • Consult your mail shop when you design the physical aspect of your mail piece. Something as simple as a flap folded in the wrong direction could cause problems with the automated machines, which could cause delays and cost money.

  • Coding records and setting up tracking metrics so response and conversion rates can be done accurately

  • Testing – Try a couple different offers and mail pieces to see what works best for you. This will help the success for your future direct marketing campaigns. 

ListAbility is a premier mailing list company. Our dedicated List Professionals can help guide you through the process of obtaining a highly targeted mailing lists, telemarketing list or email list. A better list will pay dividends with higher response rates, savings in printing and postage costs – to say nothing of getting noticed by the right people!  

Tags: mailing lists, direct marketing list strategies, mailing list brokers, mailing list, mailing list broker, direct mail strategies, direct mail marketing, business mailing list, business mailing lists, direct mail, direct mail campaigns, Direct marketing strategy, consumer mailing lists, consumer mailing list, direct mail advertising, mail list, mail lists