What Is The Response Rate For Direct Mail Today?
Mark Hale ‐ June 15, 2015
10 Ways You Can Dramatically Increase Your Response Rates!
This is a question that is asked by many? You hear many numbers thrown about, but the most common number is 2%-5%. When in fact, it is impossible for anyone to tell you that you will get any percentage response from direct mail. The reason why is because there are too many factors involved. For example:
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- The mailing list you are using. How good is it? Is it old and outdated? Is the list wrongly targeted?
- How many people on the mailing list you have are ready to buy what you sell at the time when you mail? This is an unknown variable. There might be 300 people or 3 people—there is no way to know.
- How competitive is your offer? Can they get a better deal from your competitor? Is the offer something the prospect finds important and valuable?
- How well known is your business to the prospects on the mailing list you use? People will always buy from a business they are familiar with over someone they just received a postcard from.
Now don’t get discouraged. The fact is you have a better chance of making a profit off a direct mailer than almost any other form of advertising you do. Why? Because direct mail marketing puts something directly in the hands of a prospect.
- Do your homework.
- Know who the best prospects are for your products or services, and why they buy what you sell.
- Know what your competitors are promoting.
- Know that it is impossible to time the market. The only way to make money from any advertising is to be consistent. The more familiar people are with your business, the more willing they will be to call you. You will usually always get more calls after 3 or 4 mailings to a list than you did the first time you mailed.
- Know what a new customer is worth to your business. Knowing this will help you to pinpoint exactly how many responses you need to get from the mailer. Setting realistic goals is important and will help you know how well the mailer is working.
- Use a type of mailer that is best suited for your product and has the best chances of getting through to your prospect.
Do not send a postcard out just because it is cheaper and you saw an ad for cheap postcards. Getting your prospects attention may require something different such as a note card, check mailer or some other unique mailer.
- Make sure you are not skimping on the number of pieces you are sending out. The decision will be easier if you have calculated what a new customer is worth. Also we can stagger your mail dates to make it easier on your budget.
- Have an offer that is competitive. Direct mail is not an image type of medium. Direct mail is a direct response medium. You have to give them a compelling incentive to respond.
- And finally do not forget the call to action. Make sure they can quickly and easily see how to get in touch with you.
Most people who receive a postcard or other direct mail piece from you, who have an interest in your service will almost always go to your website to check out your business. It is also helpful to make sure you have Google Analytics active on your website. This will let you see how many people went directly to your website and you will usually see a spike in your direct traffic shortly after a mailer goes out.
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The more targeted your direct mail ad is to the end user the more actual buyers you will get and random inquiries you will get. Many people confuse response with results. If you get 300 responses to you direct mailer and only 1 person is qualified to buy that is not good. You would have felt good about all the calls, but at the bottom of it all you have to make sales from the mailer. So a well-designed postcard, which is sent to a targeted mailing list that generates 25 response and 10 new customers who buy something is a good. Do not compare response with results. You want results not response.
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