Why You Should Use Direct Response Advertising

When advertising your products and services, you have to write as if you are talking 1-to-1 with your prospect. You only have a few seconds to convince your passing reader that your message is for them, so you will want to make it worthwhile. Never produce advertising that is boring. Your goal should be to create advertising that works and that is it.

Could you imagine if you were advertising on TV and you only had a few moments to get your sales message across? Well guess what, you face the same pressure when you advertising online, in newspapers, and in magazines. It’s the job of your ad to convince a busy prospect that your ad is worth paying attention to – and this is not an easy thing to do.

You should know that the money that you invest in advertising could easily cost you a fortune. So you should try your best to make your advertising effective and work for you. Do yourself a favor and take a look at your ads, your headlines, your website, and even your direct mail pieces – does it look and sound like a lot of the other ads that you see?

Are you advertising your accolades instead of what’s in it for the prospect? Is your ads making the same promises as everyone else? If you answered “yes” to all of these questions, then you should revamp and re-evaluate your advertising pieces. Just because you see a lot of other business advertising their brand and company name, that doesn’t make it the best way of marketing your business.

A lot of businesses online and offline lose a lot of money simply because they advertise via traditional means. You don’t have to do the same and experience the same fate of these businesses. When you implement traditional ways of advertising, you set yourself up to lose tons of customers because of it. If you can find a way to try something different, then you will be one of the many people who can prosper in this economy.

If you do what you’ve always done when it comes to advertising, you will get the same results. It’s time to try something newer and better and that is more effective for your bottom line. This solution is direct response advertising. With direct response, your results are measurable and can be tracked. You’ll have an accountable measurement of how many sales you are getting and will be able to see how well your ads are performing.

With a predictable way of tracking your results you can lose. In all of your advertising, your goal should be to generate some sort of response. Don’t advertise just to get your name out there because this is an ineffective way of going about things. Instead, lead a prospect to your website or to a 1-800 number where they can call for more information.

With this way of advertising, you’ll know whether or not your advertising is working for you and if you need to change anything. Always use a testable and predictable means of advertising as it’s the best way to market your business. Good luck.

Using Pizza Postcard Direct Mail for Customer Retention Campaigns

One of the very best ways to become a habit with your customers is to keep the postcards coming. Sending eye-catching postcards with tantalizing offers will help you get that valuable repeat business. Don’t you want every customer to be a ‘regular?’

Build Your List

Collect addresses from customers when they request delivery or in a guestbook near the front door of your restaurant that they will see when they dine in. Ask your servers to request customer addresses offering future discount coupons as incentive. Or leave a bowl out to collect business cards in a drawing for a free pizza. Collect street addresses on your website too so you can alternate physical postcards with promotional emails over time.

Prepare the Ingredients

You will need some mouth watering photographs for your postcard. This is the number one way to get customers back in your door on a frequent basis. They should get hungry just looking at the postcard. You need a nice sharp logo image to associate the amazing pizza with your brand. Now for the offer – make it a good one. Market analysis shows that giving a specific number of ‘dollars off’ is the most attractive offer for your customers. By adding an expiration date, customers are motivated to act quickly on the special offers. Of course your contact info needs to be prominently displayed.

Then It’s Baking Time

Choose a simple postcard template online. You will find that good printing companies have a selection of customizable templates to choose from. Using one from your favorite printing company is ideal because the ordering process will be a breeze. Pay attention to card stock weight, size and gloss vs. matte finish cards. Vary these factors for more impactful mailings. They will get more attention if they don’t look exactly the same each time they hit the mailbox.

Membership Cards and Special Occasions

Modified membership cards are always a winner when it comes to direct mailing. Many pizza restaurants offer those cards that are stamped with each order so that after a specified number of purchases, they get a free pizza. It should be wallet size and very sturdy, with lines to make it easy to cut away from the rest of the postcard. A free pizza postcard design should go over well and help encourage repeat business. Send specially themed holiday postcards throughout the year as well as birthday postcards to repeat customers. You are establishing a relationship with your regular, customized mailings.

Of course you should keep a stack of postcards on your front counter (next to that guest book) and give some to local promotional partners in complimentary businesses that will co-promote with you. If you offer to split a postcard with another business, like the local dry cleaner, you can greatly expand your mailing list since you are reaching their repeat customers along with yours. Postcards are a versatile, eye-catching and cost-effective marketing and retention tool for your pizza business. Order some hot off the press today – and watch the customers come rolling in.

B2B Email Marketing

Successful B2B Email Marketing

Email marketing is an extremely effective marketing medium in B2B business scenarios. Unlike consumer marketing where customers are innumerable, customers are easily identified and limited in any B2B. Since the number of people to be addressed is limited, and contact details obtained relatively easily, Email marketing can be leveraged with potent benefits to the organization.

In B2B Email marketing the fundamental principles of marketing continue to be relevant. It definitely pays to spend some time thinking,formulating and documenting an Email marketing strategy prior to initiating any customer communication.

Who is the customer?

The first step is to map the customer purchase process. Mapping reveals the user, influencers, opinion leaders, decision makers and likely decision breakers too. They are likely to come from different departments of the organization: Users department, Procurement, Finance, Senior management (depending on deal size). Each of them has a role to play in making the purchase, and each of them needs to be marketed to.

Email Marketing campaigns sometime need to be customized for each of the participants of the purchase process. Not every person in the decision making process would be a potential recipient for the same email marketing campaign. For example, while the CEO of an organization could be one making the final sign-off on a high value sale, it’s unlikely that the CEO would like to receive periodical product catalogues from you (indispensable for procurement). However the CEO needs to be aware of your business. Depending on the nature of your business and the size of the customer organization, you could definitely get the attention of the CEO with a specially addressed email annually or semi-annually.

Messaging Senior Management:

Launch of a new product/service

Invites to special events that you could be hosting Seasonal greetings

Any Industry news that you possess and could be of business interest to the CEO/Top management

Messaging Users, Procurement, and Technical evaluators:

You must look at addressing Procurement, Users and technical personnel at frequent time intervals. These people initiate the purchase, are present through all the critical decision points of the purchase process, and quite often have veto power to negative a supplier. They are very important people and Email marketing needs to ensure that your business is top of mind and viewed favorably in their minds.

Regular communications addressing details of new products or services added to your business, technical features, special promotions, discounts could be your subjects – staying top of mind, and at the same time educating.

Subjects for addressing procurement professionals could be:

Your product/Services catalogue (at the same frequency that you update it)

Deals and promotions that you may be offering

Advance information about price hikes that you anticipate

Technical information about your products or services (If you are a dealer/distributor, this may not be of much interest since this information may be funneled directly by the manufacturer)

Invitations to any special events (Seminars/Product launches) that you are organizing

Information about any training programs on your products

New products or services launches

Intimation of price changes (advance and/or post increase)

Season greetings

Birthday/Anniversary greetings

Designing the communication

Much has been written about the structure and design of email communications – so much that it looks a science by itself and a highly complex subject. I however would like to take a simple approach. Lets consider a few pertinent points

You must have a communication message that is of interest and relevance to your customer. Do not generate content at random without first considering whether your customer would be interested in the content. If interest is in doubt – do not send the email. Always keep the interest of the customer in mind.

Keep the message short and simple. If there is a lot that you need to communicate, redirect them to a webpage with additional content

Call for Action

Let your message always have a call for action. Possible action triggers could be:

Meeting with a sales rep – or asking for a telephone call from your business

Request for additional information

Place an order with you

Request of a demonstration (in person or on the web)

Subscribe to a newsletter

Confirm participation in an event or seminar

Or one of many actions depending on the nature of your email communication

Evaluate your campaign

At the end of each email campaign measure the effectiveness of the campaign. Important parameters could be:

Value of sales made

Number of leads generated

No. Seminar participation confirmed/Sales appointments generated etc

Email opened stats

Calculate cost per lead/sale generated – and any other ROI calculations you would like to make

You must calculate direct and indirect sales/brand building on account of the campaign (not every email campaign can be translated into direct sales. Some of the communications could be just a brand-building exercise, while others could be with the specific purpose of building sales). There could be many who didn’t respond to you by email – but called you up instead, or just landed up at your business to purchase. An email promo-code could build a better measurement of the direct benefits of your campaign.

Clean-up your contact database:

Remove all email id’s that bounced on account of wrong email id

Remove all email id’s that have unsubscribe requests

Remove all email id’s that have been blocked by spam filters

Database maintenance is an ongoing exercise and ensures a clean email database. Maintenance is often skipped if it is not an assigned responsibility. Set up update schedules and mechanisms. Assign responsibility for List creation, updating and management.

Avoid being labeled as SPAM

There are some simple steps you can take to prevent being labeled as spam and stay within the anti-spam law. In all your email marketing communications:

Provide your business address and telephone numbers

Offer an unsubscribe option that actually works

When an unsubscribe request is received – remove the contact from your mailing database and also acknowledge that you have received the unsubscribe request and acted upon it

Email marketing is not very complex if you develop sharp objectives and clear expectations of what the medium can do for you, and more importantly what it can’t. In the hands of experienced marketers, Email marketing can be a very potent weapon in building brands, generating leads and supporting conventional media marketing campaigns. There is no magic bullet or campaign style that works for everyone. Each business will need to work and set up their own objectives, Email marketing strategies and execute their campaigns. What works for one business may not work for another.