With digital marketing on many companies’ to-do lists, “older” tactics such as direct mail are often overlooked. However, when done correctly, direct mail can still be a cost-effective way to reach both Business-to-Business (B2B) and Business-to-Consumer (B2C) audiences. Planning a direct mail campaign can be daunting, but here at Martino Flynn, we are experts in this tactic and can help you with all aspects—from strategy to reporting—of your direct mail campaign.
When starting a direct mail campaign, it is important to remember that cost effective does not necessarily mean “least expensive.” Inexpensive direct mail campaigns can be accomplished, but sometimes your audience and/or product warrants a more robust mailer. For example, when mailing an important press release to industry CEOs, you may want to invest more for a thicker paper stock or use a more expensive format that grabs attention. On the opposite end, if you have an easy-to-understand, consumer product, an inexpensive postcard with a coupon attached to it may be your best option.
The first step to determining your campaign budget should be to create a waterfall, also called a pro forma. The waterfall should take into account your estimated response rate and allowable costs per response and/or sale. Using the above example, if you are targeting CEOs and signing one new contract will bring in a large chunk of revenue for you, your allowable may be much higher than a company that profits $20 on each product that it sells. Keeping in mind the potential lifetime revenue, not just the first sale for both B2B and B2C customers, is important as some campaigns may take time and multiple sales per customer to pay for themselves, while others may pay for themselves almost immediately.
Once your direct mail campaign budget has been determined, there are many different costs to consider, including paper, printing, postage, design, photography, mail list purchasing and cleansing fees, among others. As mentioned, your audience and/or product can help to determine which of these things you should spend the majority of your budget on and where you can save. Keep in mind that spending more does not necessarily equate to a better response rate.
Another factor that can affect your direct mail campaign’s cost is the quantity of your mailing. Typically, the smaller your mail quantity, the more expensive it is per piece for design and printing. Postage costs may also decrease per piece for larger quantity mailings or mailings that target a small geographic area.
Like many other marketing tactics, most of the people who receive your mailer will not respond. Multiple mailings may be needed and testing different messages, formats, and calls to action is always a good idea.
Martino Flynn can help you navigate the often complicated direct mail campaign process. For more information on developing a cost-effective direct mail campaign, please contact Heather Riexinger at firstname.lastname@example.org.