Direct marketing to a local audience can be a really effective channel for small businesses wanting to boost sales on a tight budget. But it must be done right.
Whether online, in the local paper or through letterbox advertising, it’s important to focus your message to make the most of every targeted campaign.
Here are some tips to structure your approach.
Don’t Skimp On Research
One of the most common mistakes is not spending enough time and effort doing research at the beginning. It’s crucial to ensure your brand and message reaches your target audience, whether your campaign is a letterbox drop in your local area or an email directly to your customer base.
First and foremost, that means identifying your target market and finding the most effective channels to get your message in front of them.
Marketing materials shouldn’t be written or designed until the target list has been established. Copy and offers need to be tailored to your audience, so there’s no point jumping into things without identifying that audience first.
Bad design is a sure-fire way to see emails or flyers go unread. There’s nothing worse than a great business or incentive getting lost in all the copy clutter, so fonts, logos and layout are all crucial.
Professionals can help sort out the design side of things, so if you’re not a design whiz, look to outsource. For many people it will be the first time they see your business, and you’ll never get another chance to make a first impression.
Giveaways and Incentives
Having a unique offer will help ensure emails are opened and flyers are stuck on the fridge stay front of mind. Whether it’s a two-for-one deal, early bird offers or a discount off the next purchase, incentives are a pretty standard tool in the direct marketing world.
However, to be effective they must be geared to the needs of your target market.
The more attractive the incentive, the more attention you’ll get, so think creatively and make it worth your target’s time.
Use Multiple Channels
Connecting with customers through different channels is one of the best tactics. Not only does it increase the reach of a campaign, it means online and offline channels can work in conjunction with each other. For example, a letterbox drop might include a QR code or direction to an online site.
Using multiple channels means customers can interact however they want, which is important because everyone has different media consumption habits.
The best research, design and giveaways across multiple channels will mean nothing if there’s no follow up. The beauty of direct marketing is that it’s measurable and accountable, so don’t campaign and then forget.
Try linking a physical ad or coupon code in a flyer to a website to unlock an offer, or use SMS responses to gather a lead database. Response rates are crucial to measure the effectiveness of a marketing campaign so be sure to have some way to check your results.
Follow up any inquiries, leads and sales in a timely manner and you’ll be sure to gain some more insights into your market.
This article was originally published on Kochie’s Business Builders.