Does direct marketing still work in 2014?

According to B2B Marketing, direct marketing (also called “direct mail”) remains one of the most powerful tools of communication and a key element of the marketing mix in B2B, especially if it’s combined with online marketing tactics.

I think this tactic is effective too, and I have proof of it. The Exo B2B team is preparing a direct mail campaign to attract new customers to its web site, and obviously, generate sales leads.

I will use the following example to offer tips that can contribute to the success of your next direct mail campaign.

1. Target: finding a list of contacts and customization

Because we want to appeal to new customers, our current contact list is not taken into consideration. We acquired a list of names of business owners in a specific B2B industry, obviously including mailing addresses and according to the targeted areas, so it’s an important exercise of segmentation.

It’s imperative to customize the mailing with the name of the recipient as studies show that the conversion rate aimed will be higher.

2. The message: the punchline and the design

It’s now time to create a message and a powerful and suitable design for the selected audience, taking into account the language, the seasonality, colors, etc.

To maximize our conversion rate, we used a simple marketing technique, the A/B test. It consists of mailing two variants of the same communication tool. In our case, we changed the design and the punchline. The content is the same though.

After analyzing the results, we’ll be able to determine which version gave us the best results and which version to send to the rest of our contacts.

3. The incentive: the transition from the printed tool to the online tool

Which offer will encourage your target audience to take action immediately? Mailing without an incentive is a complete waste of time! If it’s well thought out, direct mail is a powerful tool to encourage prospects to fill out a form on your website.

Indeed, it is important to include an incentive, limited in time, which will be valuable for the contact receiving the communication. Sending a quality article for a subscription to your blog, a discount on a product or service or, a free 30 minute consultation with an expert, are some possible incentives.

With the arrival of Bill C-28 in Canada, which states that you must obtain the explicit consent of customers before any commercial e-mailing, direct mail is an alternative and therefore, an indispensable tool to reach new customers. And when they are ​​on your website, why not do two things at once and encourage them to give you their consent.

In my next article, I will complete this article by talking about performance measurement and the monitoring of leads collected by the sales team.

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