I have been in the direct mail industry for over 34 years.
During that time many of my clients have asked me what the most significant part of a successful marketing campaign is.
I always answer that the most important ingredient in any direct mail campaign is pre-qualifying your prospects and selecting the correct database for your franchise. There are many ways to prequalify your prospects either by: neighborhood, age, income, children in household, lifestyle, hobbies to name a few.
But your best source of knowledge is your current consumer database.
It is extremely important to keep your customer database up to date and keeping your data consistent. If your mail house is able, you need to have them pull a radius report around your business location and merge your current client list into the report.
The mail house should be able to provide you with a spreadsheet outlining for you exactly what neighborhoods your current clients are coming from. Remember your best new clients are usually a mirror image of your existing clients.
Once you select the neighborhoods you want to target have your mail house suppress your present consumers this way you are achieving a true new customer acquisition mailing and not just mailing to the same people who are already frequenting your franchise.
The old carpet bomb approach to direct mail is in the past.
People have become conditioned to just toss these types of direct mail vehicles into the trash and not even take a second look, that is why your response rates are dismal.
Direct Mail is still the best way for a franchise to reach your target audience and stay within your marketing budget. Take the time to find the right direct mail vehicle and mailing list to increase response rate by 2 to 3x your normal returns.
We also have fantastic direct mail vehicle that has an incredible 96% read rate out of mail box. It is called Impact Mailers and they are actually plastic post cards with snap out gift/loyalty cards which are getting tremendous response for many franchise verticals. Check them out. Hope this information helps you achieve your marketing goals.