Of all the ways to get people talking about your business, there’s one fundamentally over-looked option, and that is good old-fashioned paper and envelope based mail. And this tried and tested favourite has been in decline in recent years, so in an era when Internet based promotion is the norm, what can you do to make that far more personal connection happen?
Online marketing is mostly effective because it costs very little for your business to contact new customers, and it’s usually much faster and easier to create digital advertising than it is using the more traditional print-based method. However, think about how many emails you receive throughout any given day. It’s fair to assume that more often than not, most of us get more emails than we actually want to read – or are even capable of getting through.
However, advertising via post, or by using newsletters, leaflets and catalogues (which is sometimes referred to as ‘direct marketing’) offers many advantages that you should definitely consider when deciding upon as an advertising plan for your business.
Not only can you target a smaller, more precise demographic, but you can also contact those prospective customers in a way that may be far more effective than online marketing alone. But what exactly are the benefits of direct marketing?
Instead of filling up email inboxes, the direct marketing approach allows you to connect with your customers on a much more personal level, and you’re not going to get any closer to your existing or potential customers or clients than when using a direct mail strategy.
By using direct marketing methods such as leaflets and letters, you’re increasing the chances of it being seen by far more many people than by standard email alone. Most emails tend to end up in spam folder anyways, whereas a personalised correspondence (with a hand written address label) is bound to grab people’s attention.
You can also tailor how you communicate with your target market, and by focusing on little touches such as hand-written address labels (or personalised envelopes), you can show that you value people individually. By hand writing the customer’s addresses, it demonstrates that an actual human (instead of an inconsiderate automatic service) is contacting them, and actually cares about what they have to say.
The personalised touch speaks of truly valuing your recipient, and may just help to create a relationship of trust between yourselves and them. One of the problems of modern communication is that with the increased reliance on technology and computing, there is an increased concern for privacy. There are countless stories and reports of hackers breaking into seemingly secure sites, which creates a sense that identity theft has become an ever-pervasive threat, which in tern causes certain demographics to no longer trust opening attachments and links that pop up in emails.
What’s really important is that asides from all the doom and gloom, there is a real sense of nostalgia to receiving tangible personalised post every now and then. The older generations may appreciate it that little bit more, but there’s no getting past the fact that the analogue ways of the past have a certain popularised appeal these days as well.
How to make a start yourself
Now that we’ve hopefully convinced you that your ideas for paper-based newsletters, catalogues and leaflets are well worth your efforts, it’s time to take a look at some tips and tricks for getting it done as quickly, efficiently and accurately as possible.
Although there are countless online companies that can take care of every aspect of printing and mailing, they tend to be unnecessarily expensive, so for small businesses and hobbyists you can certainly take care of it yourself.
The main thing when it comes to creating the right content for your advertising is just how you go about creating exactly what it is you want to get across. Of course you can employ a professional writer to do it for you, but this isn’t always the best option. At the end of the day, you need to express what it is you’re selling succinctly and clearly, and in a way that reflects your business and its core values. Just writing in a way that matches exactly how you would like to be spoken to can make all the difference.
Once you are happy with your literature you can look for companies who are happy to print out the kind of numbers you are looking for. These exist on almost any street in a city or town, and they may even offer a discount for large bulk orders.
Be smart when it comes to creating your templates for your documents. You can easily make mail merging style outlines for your personalised mail, which in turn makes it easier to print out more when needed.
There are many services that are just a mouse click away who would be happy to deal with bulk order printing and deliveries, but to make it truly personal it’s worth looking to do a bit of DIY. Should you choose to do so there are plenty of online companies who offer a postal discounts for bulk deliveries. The main point is to do your research.
So there you have it. Personalised correspondence can be a fantastic way to connect with your clients, and with some planning you can make it that much more personal.