Mixing Direct Mail and Email  to Market your Local BusinessDirect mail can help you score new customers; email marketing can help you hang on to them. Combine these efforts and you have a dynamic direct marketing campaign that can improve response rates and boost business.

The two are top methods for delivering the strongest return on investment for consumer acquisition and retention. According to a Target Marketing survey done this year, marketers said they were going to spend 34% more on direct mail and 65% more on email. Are you ready to launch a successful integrated direct marketing campaign? Here are some ideas on how to leverage the best of print and online marketing:

Combine Efforts

The most cost-effective way to reach customers is to find an all-inclusive vendor with direct mail and email lists to eliminate unnecessary back and forth. Such a firm has the most up-to-date, targeted customer lists and can create eye-catching marketing material with a can’t-miss call to action.

Use Social Networking

Improve your chances of connecting with customers —  without blowing your marketing budget — by integrating social networking into your direct marketing campaign. The key is to find a platform that’s niche-specific. If you’re in real estate, for instance, create Twitter and Facebook accounts and establish a presence on a real estate network site. To learn more about being a business on social networks, go here.

Keep It Personal

Personalization is easier and less expensive than ever before, thanks to improvements in technology. And including prospects’ names within direct mail pieces is a move that works. Highly personalized direct mail allows you to tailor your marketing message and generates a higher response rate than non-personalized direct mail.

Ask Permission

Obtain consumers’ consent before adding them to your email list. And provide a working opt-out link and clear instructions on how to be removed from your email list. If you receive an opt-out request, you must remove that consumer from your email list within 10 business days. For more information, read about the Federal Trade Commission’s CAN-SPAM law and how it applies to businesses.

Have Multiple Touch Points

Typically, it can take at least three to seven connections to get a prospect interested in responding. That’s why direct mail and email work hand in hand. To implement your campaign, send an email announcing that the direct mail piece is on its way. Then, a week later, follow up with a personalized direct mail piece that has the same look and feel as the email and contains a meaningful call to action and a coupon. About three days after the direct mail piece arrives in your prospect’s mailbox, send a follow-up email; include a link to your website for another way to receive the coupon.

Ramp Up Your Website

Make sure your website contains forms for collecting prospects’ contact information. This will help you keep a better database of people who respond to your efforts. Also channel your energy into improving your website’s search engine optimization so that it’s more likely to pop up during organic searches. If you need to know more about SEO and how it can help your business, read this.

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