Get consumers' attention with direct mail
It's a jungle out there in junk-mail land as you no doubt know
if direct mail is part of your marketing mix. Last year the average American
received 34 pounds of catalogs and other solicitations a total of
553 direct mail pieces. The volume of junk mail is expected to triple in
the next decade. How can jewelers hope to cut through the clutter?
A recent story in U.S. News & World Report includes a list
of "proven principles" to which savvy marketers adhere:
- Live stamps get more letters opened than metered postage. A commemorative
stamp is better than a standard one, and four 5-cent stamps are better
than one 20-cent one on postcards.
- Handwriting whether real or computer-generated works wonders.
So much so that one company in Minneapolis employs 170 women to handwrite
sales letters and thank-you notes for direct-marketing clients. Other companies
use laser scanners to duplicate handwriting, sometimes employing such tricks
as leaving dots off of i's or crossing out words. "Computers can even
produce letters bearing simulated coffee spills," U.S. News reports.
(Not recommended if you want to be recognized for your careful attention
- The most effective letters end with a postscript. The P.S. is the second
most read part of the letter, surpassed only by the first sentence. Many
marketers use it to restate the benefits of their offers or to underline
the importance of acting now.
- Enclosing a premium may induce guilt and makes customers more likely
to respond. (How can they refuse to visit your store after you've sent
them a goody even an inexpensive one?)
- "Free" is still the magic word in direct mail. The phrase
"Buy one, get one free" draws a 40% higher response rate than
"50% off" or "half-price," the magazine says. And while
the term "free gift" is redundant, it draws three times as many
people as a simple "gift" will.
Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.