How Procrastination Hurts Your Marketing

‐ November 11, 2013

Procrastination - Man Circling NowProcrastination is one of the most common ailments known to man, “Why Do Something Today that I can Put Off Until Tomorrow?”

That tiny bit of human nature is exactly why every postcard marketing effort in every direct mail campaign should always create a sense of urgency and have a call to action.

Urgency is the string that pulls your prospect to a decision. When life was simpler and less hectic maybe you could get away without a call to action or compelling offer, but not today. Without a sense of urgency, people will put off responding to your postcard marketing campaign and eventually will forget about you all together.

The following are some other ideas you can use to create urgency in your marketing:

  • Expiration Date – the most common method of creating a sense of urgency is to have an expiration date on an offer, a “special deal” or discount. If they respond by the expiration date they get the special offer. However, a discount or a deal is not the only way to create a sense of urgency.
  • Bonus offer – instead offer a discount and include a bonus for responding before a certain date. A bonus could be increasing the quantity or size of the order for the same price. Or, include something else of value if they respond.
  • Limited Supplies – the customer needs to respond quickly or they might miss out on the opportunity. A limited opportunity offer can be very compelling to some folks as it appeals to the other element of human nature, “I don’t want to miss out”.

In addition to creating a sense of urgency, you should include a “call to action” on your direct mail campaign. A call to action is simply a deadline to buy combined with instruction on the next step in making a purchase.

Example: Sale ends on April 30th at 10:00pm to get your free wizzledo, Call 836-xxx-xxxx now and ask for Ed.

The call to action tells the prospect what the next step is. If you don’t ask for the reader to respond they won’t.

The incentive offer and the call to action are vital to your postcard campaign being successful. If your offer is weak your response will be poor. How do you find out if an offer is good enough? Test it on a limited basis and see how it pulls. Today it is easy to test an ad, you can email it or mail it to 100 customers and see how much response you get. If you get 5 calls that is a .05 percent return. But don’t stop there, ask your customer what they think of the offer. Listen to what they say. When you are surveying an ad, the more people you ask the better. After about 15 or 20 you begin to see patterns in responses and after 40-50 you will definitely know what to change and what works.

Mark Hale

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