Direct mail is experiencing something of a renaissance, as sales teams look for new ways to reach consumers who are struggling with digital fatigue and tuning out online advertising.
In particular, handwritten direct mail can provide businesses with a valuable opportunity to capture people’s attention, trigger an emotive response and nurture a meaningful connection. Consider the last time you received a hand-addressed piece of post, it’s associated with care and thoughtfulness.
The challenge is planning and executing your own handwritten direct mail campaign and opening up this sales channel. We know this is uncharted territory for many - which is why we’ve created this helpful guide!
The first step to any direct mail campaign is identifying your goal. Why are you launching this activity, and what do you hope to achieve? Establish clear objectives, such as:
Now for the second step. If you don’t set specific targets from the start, you’ll never be satisfied with a campaign’s results. It’s essential you identify tangible metrics such as:
Complete this sentence: My campaign aims to (goal) by achieving (target metric)
E.g. My campaign aims to generate new sales by achieving a 20% conversion rate from notes sent to meetings booked.
Handwritten direct mail campaigns sit at the opposite end of the spectrum to batch and blast door drop campaigns. This shouldn’t be a random collection of addresses pulled together on a whim. It’s time to get your magnifying glasses on your prospects and understand your buyer persona.
To ensure your recipient feels a sense of authenticity upon opening the envelope, focus on specific segments to match your specific campaign purpose, such as:
Following GDPR, sellers and marketers are having to adapt to new rules around data confidentiality. However, the DMA states that businesses don’t need to acquire explicit consent before sending recipients direct mail, so long as they can claim legitimate interest.
How to identify your persona?
Understanding your ideal customer persona helps to create content that resonates. Answer these questions to paint the picture of how you contact them, when to contact them and what you say.
Every sales campaign needs a timescale, so what are you working towards?
Whatever date you’re focused on, plan backwards. Consider when your note should land to get the best response. For instance, if you’re offering customers a special seasonal offer, schedule your note to land at least a couple of weeks before the discount deadline to give people a chance to purchase.
Direct mail can be surprisingly nimble in response to events in the customer journey. Set up frequent campaigns to be turned around in 72 hours, based on certain triggers:
You can also improve the timeliness of your direct mail by integrating it within a multi-channel sales campaign, so post appears at the same time as an email, call or digital advertising.
First impressions get your direct mail from the doormat into your prospects’ hands, opened and read, so you need to make it count. Handwritten envelopes massively outperform all other channels, achieving close to 100% open rates. Really, there’s no contest.
Direct mail costs traditionally include design, materials, printing and postage. While you could slap a few words on a multipack of cards, mail them all out and see what happens, mediocre presentation is likely to lead to mediocre results.
Get the best possible results with a handwritten direct mail campaign that represents both your company image and your attitude towards customers.
Avoid heavy branding and lead with quality. Not only do beautifully scribed notes on premium stationery portray your business in a positive light, they also treat recipients in a thoughtful, considered and personal manner. So it’s a win win.
Add value in some way, teach them something or make them smile:
We have a handful of useful templates to lend some inspiration. Request copy templates here.
A huge pile of blank stationery and envelopes can be daunting to even the most dedicated office intern. Handwriting direct mail is a resource-heavy task, and one which requires a steady hand and creative flair. Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, and flowing calligraphy isn’t a universal skill.
Handwritten direct mail campaigns also require a high level of organisation. Personalised content tends to loses all of its appeal if names are misspelt or addresses are mixed up. In an ideal world, you want to combine the order of a CRM with the warmth of human touch.
Luckily, Inkpact’s online platform makes it easy to send a handwritten direct mail campaign without you ever needing to pick up a fountain pen!
Tech can empower your business to utilise high levels of personalisation in a scalable way, ultimately establishing better customer relationships and achieving stronger business outcomes. This switch from a ‘one-size-fits-all’ sales approach to more bespoke tactics can truly transform your results.
For our best practices on designing a follow up process & tracking your campaign results to get the best possible ROI check out our guide here.
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