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Want more people to respond to your marketing offers? Sometimes the answer is so obvious that marketers overlook it. Tell your audience what you want them to do, then ask them to do it. Yes, sometimes it’s that straight forward.

While most people don’t like to be given the “hard sell,” you still need your message to be clear. What are you offering? What action do you want them to take? In too many cases, marketers are overly vague. They may also bury the call to action or forget to include one altogether.

Don’t miss your opportunity. In every direct mailer or direct marketing piece, make sure you to include these three things:

1. Be clear about the product. Your mailer may look awesome with that beachfront view, but what do you want people to do? Book a rental? Purchase a vacation package? Donate to an ocean cleanup effort? Make your request clear.

2. Encourage action. Don’t assume people will know what you want them to do. Ask them to request a brochure, call for a free appointment, or make a purchase.

3. Tell them how to do it. Make it easy to respond. If you want people to send away for more information, prefill the business reply card with their name and address. If you want them to make a phone call, print the phone number in a larger font or a different color so it’s easy to find. If you want them to visit your website, print the URL clearly on the mailer and include a QR Code, as well.

Assume that your audience is busy and you only have a few minutes of their time. Within just a few seconds of scanning the piece, they should know what you are selling, what action you want them to take, and how to do it. It’s so simple that you’d be surprised how many marketers miss it.

Looking for marketing support? Give us a call!

Have Regular Renewals? Use Trigger Marketing

Do you sell the kinds of products or services that are ordered on a cyclical basis or that renew according to a regular schedule? If so, you should consider sending simple, calendar-triggered reminders based on the customer’s purchase or service history to keep your revenues flowing.

Auto dealerships use this technique all the time. To boost its service revenues, one dealership decided to slice its customer database (both active and inactive) by type of automotive service, such as emissions checks, tune-ups, and brake service. Then, the dealership sorted this data by date of the next service, such as all customers with emissions checks coming up within the next 60 days. They used this information to generate weekly alerts to car owners in advance of the recommended service dates for their vehicles.

With this approach, the dealership saw its service department profits rise to 18% within the first six months of the campaign, compared to 12% in the prior six months.

As auto dealerships know, a simple reminder can be incredibly effective. It works in other markets, too. Software upgrades. Computer service contracts. Gym memberships. Medical appointments. Pet care. Landscaping. Floral arrangements for birthdays and anniversaries. Any market in which the need for products and services is ongoing and cyclical.

Talk to us about how you can combine trigger marketing with personalized alerts and offers to keep your customers ordering. Don’t have those critical dates to send those triggers? Ask us about simple data collection. We can help with that, too!

Creating Marketing Copy That Gets Read

In Confessions of an Advertising Man, David Ogilvy, founder of the highly regarded advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather, wrote, “Ninety-nine percent of all advertising doesn’t sell a thing.” You don’t want your products to be in that 99%. How do you make sure you are in the coveted one percent?

You might say “personalization and relevance,” and it’s true. Personalization stops you, and relevance gets you reading further. But even the most personalized, relevant message won’t amount to much if it isn’t paired with good marketing copy. If the copy is not compelling, if it’s bland and uninformative, even the best personalization cannot carry the load. Your need good, solid marketing copy that is interesting, engaging, and compelling.

To make the most of your marketing efforts, here are some fundamental principles for great copywriting you can follow.

• Be imaginative. Break out of the mold. Look for different or unconventional ways to say the same thing.
• Be a salesman. Cute and clever doesn’t get you anywhere if it doesn’t sell anything. Be creative, but also be clear. Sell benefits. Give an overt call to action. Balance creativity and salesmanship.
• Talk about your customers first. As one marketing communications site puts it, “Self-interest is the best hook.” Talk about customers’ problems, customers’ challenges, and customers’ bottlenecks. Then talk about how your products and services solve them.
• Be honest. Part of building a brand is maintaining customer loyalty and trust. That starts with honesty about the products and services you sell.
• Hire a professional editor, even if only on a freelance basis. An employee who is “good at grammar” isn’t good enough. When it comes to marketing, there are rules for punctuation, capitalization, and usage that only professionals know.

Of course, there are other elements to great print marketing, as well. Good layout. Interesting graphics. Compelling offer. But great copy ties it all together.

Talk to us about turning these simple rules into a standout 1:1 print campaign that will motivate your customers to action.

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