Direct-mail by its very nature should be a targeted and customized solution to help reach consumers when they’re most likely to buy. The more focused you can make your campaign the better chance you have of increasing your conversion ratio and reducing waste. The following is a list of questions you should ask yourself or your direct mail vendor the next time you are planning a direct-mail campaign for your contracting company.
Questions to define your ideal customer
- Who is your most profitable customer?
- Are they of a particular age, gender, or income?
- If your ideal customer walked through your door right now how would you describe them?
- Who is the ideal consumer that you would want to do business with most? There is a difference.
Questions that define your reach
- Where are your ideal customers located geographically?
- Where do you want to target your marketing? Nationwide — or down to a particular ZIP code?
- How far are you willing to travel to provide your service?
- How far will clients travel to do business with you?
Questions that define your products & services
- Of all the products and services you provide which one(s) are most profitable to you?
- If you could put an offer in front of your ideal customer, what would you focus on the most?
- What aspects of your business are most sought after by your ideal customers?
- Do you have any products that you offer which you have Co-op funds available for use?
Questions that define seasonality
- What type of seasonal promotions do you have throughout the year?
- Do you have time sensitive offers (think air-conditioning or lawn cutting) that have seasonal specials attached?
- What time of the year are you the busiest? How about least busy?
- Persistence overcomes resistance. In other words, many times a year would you like your message in front of your ideal customer?
- What times of the year do you have either excess inventory or excess time on your hands?
Of all the things I’ve talked about in this post one thing stands head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to direct mail success or failure…the list. You are MUCH better off developing your own home-grown list mailing list than going to a list broker since most of the names on your list have a vague idea who you are and are somewhat interested in your product or service.
And one last bit of advice, you don’t always have to target the high-end of the income scale in your area, everybody does it and they’re always the most broke. What good is it marketing to a guy that makes $200,000 a year when he owes $300,000? You are better off targeting the average Joe since most direct-mail in the construction industry excludes his income level.