Direct mail postcards and letters can be excellent tools for generating leads and sales for one simple reason: they work. According to the USPS, direct mail recipients purchased 28% more merchandise and spent 28% more money than non-recipients, proving that it pays to incorporate direct mail advertising into your marketing campaigns. However, not all direct mailers are created equal.
In this post, we’ll dish 20 practical ways to boost your company’s sales with direct mail postcards and letters, helping to increase your bottom line and ROI.
- Target the right audience
Direct mail marketing allows you to target the audience most likely interested in your product and service, preventing you from wasting your precious resources. Whether you’re selling a product or service, ensure your mailing recipient list aligns with your ideal buyer’s profile for the best results.
- Make your contact information stand out
Let’s start with the basics: your company name and contact information. Sometimes, it’s easy to get so focused on the message of your direct mailer that you forget essential information that can help lead to a sale. So, be sure to highlight your company’s name and make your email address, website, and/or phone number pop.
- Include a response card or envelope
If your direct mail postcard or letter requires a response, such as with a donation solicitation campaign, be sure to include a corresponding response card or envelope. That way, you’ll make it easy for recipients to submit their responses through the mail, helping to increase the success of your campaign.
- Provide enough information to solicit a response
If you’re selling a product or service that requires a significant investment or explanation, don’t be afraid to write a longer letter instead of sending short direct mail postcards. In it, provide enough information to help your recipients make a decision, including only relevant points to keep their attention.
- Be friendly and personable
Direct mail postcards and letters can help connect you with a potential customer for the first time. So, take the opportunity to cultivate a positive impression. For instance, consider writing your copy in a friendly and upbeat tone, almost as if you’re having a conversation. Demonstrating genuine kindness and concern can go a long way in boosting your sales.
- Use persuasive language
In addition to being friendly, also be persuasive. Effective language can increase the odds of a response to your direct mail postcards or letters. The strategy here will depend on the goal of your campaign, but the idea is to incorporate marketing words that will resonate with your audience. For inspiration, check out this article for words that tap into emotion, make people feel safe, imply urgency, and show value.
- Grab your reader’s attention right away
Make the opening of your direct mailer powerful to grab your recipients’ attention from the get-go. Whether you’re sending postcards or letters, hook them in from the start, so they want to keep reading to learn more about what you have to say.
- Use subheadings to break up long blocks of text
With attention spans growing shorter by the minute, breaking up long blocks of text with compelling subheadings is essential. Making your copy digestible in this way can help increase the chances that your recipient will read or skim to the end to find your compelling offer.
- Make a clear ask
What are you selling? Avoid beating around the bush when creating sales-oriented direct mail postcards or letters. If you want your reader to buy a product, let them know. Or, if you want them to subscribe, ask them to sign up (and make it very easy).
- Focus on the unique benefits your company offers
Unique benefits are like gold in the sales world because they help your audience understand the value of your product or service. To use this tip successfully, distinguish between features and benefits. A feature is what your product does or has (e.g., all-wheel drive), while a benefit is how it helps (e.g., provides reliable traction in ice and snow). Focus your copy on the benefits to see an uptick in responses and sales.
- Make it personal
Personalized mail is another way to boost sales using direct mail postcards and letters. Thanks to technology advancements like variable data printing, you can include your recipients’ first name instead of a generic greeting, such as ‘Dear homeowner.’ You can also personalize the message in your mailer to each recipient, helping you better connect with your prospective customers.
- Emphasize the critical points
Not everyone reads a direct mail piece from top to bottom – some people skim the text quickly to discern whether they’re interested in an offering. So, make it easy for skimmers to identify your most important points by emphasizing them with bold font, underlining, or vibrant colors. The trick is to use these elements sparingly to not overwhelm the design.
- Make the message flow naturally
Compared to direct mail postcards, letters require a thorough look at the structure of the message to ensure it’s easy to understand. Aim to gently guide the reader from one point to another, stating your ideas in a logical order. Another way to improve flow is to link sentences using transition phrases, such as “additionally,” “for example,” or “in summary.”
- Inspire the reader to take action
Just like any other marketing campaign, direct mail marketing works best when there’s a clear call-to-action (CTA). Be clear in directing the recipient toward the next step you want them to take. Whether it’s setting up an appointment, visiting a website, or reserving a spot, a compelling CTA is a surefire way to boost sales.
- Instill trust and peace of mind
Direct mail advertising is especially successful at generating sales when recipients feel at ease with your company and its offering. So, give them the sense that they can’t lose. For example, defer payments until their product ships, or offer a money-back guarantee. If you belong to a trade association, include the logos in the letter’s footer for added peace of mind.
- Use a PS
PS stands for post scriptum, or “after text.” Incorporating one into your direct mail postcards or letters is a great way to leave a personal note or a just-remembered perk to help you seal the deal.
- Combine it with an appealing package
While sending direct mail postcards by themselves is common, letters are often part of a larger package. Whether its an annual report, promotional item, or other complementary materials, a creative package can help boost your response rates – and your bottom line.
- Use an omni-channel approach
Integrate your direct mail marketing message with additional channels, such as social media and email, to amplify success rates. This type of omnichannel approach can lift your results by as much as 23-46%, offering a sales-boosting solution that helps you become a smarter marketer.
- Include an endorsement or testimonial
Another way to increase sales using direct mail postcards and letters is to include an endorsement or testimonial from a satisfied customer. These unbiased third-party opinions can help establish trust and enhance credibility, all in the name of boosting your bottom line.
- Overcome objections
Finally, helping prospective customers overcome objections can also help increase sales with direct mail postcards and letters. Start by listing possible reasons your customer might not buy, then respond to these objections in your mailer. For instance, payment plans offer a solution for those worried about affordability. Comparison charts that highlight how your offering stacks up with the competition can also help your recipients overcome objections standing in the way of a sale.
Head to our blog to learn more about direct mail marketing best practices, omnichannel direct mail advertising, or any other direct mail advice. To get started with direct mail postcards or letters designed to boost your bottom line, connect with our experienced team. We’re a uniquely qualified partner providing high-quality, accurate, and efficient print-driven communications using the latest technologies. With over 20 years of experience, we’re here to help you grow.