Direct Mail used to be complicated, especially if you’re not a marketer by trade. As such, many ventures ended up wasting money or missing growth goals by making postcard marketing mistakes that lower the effectiveness of their campaigns.
Software for sending postcards has made avoiding many of these mistakes easier. Here are the five most common, and most costly, postcard marketing mistakes that you’ll want to avoid when running your direct mail campaigns.
1. Sending poorly designed postcards
Design is much more than just making your postcard looks good. The design also influences the results of your campaign and will affect conversion rates.
A well-designed postcard will direct readers’ eyes to the most important information on your card, and compel them to take the right action (whether it’s calling to make an appointment, stop by your store, or visiting your landing page). This aspect of the design is called “user experience,” or “UX” for short.
Unfortunately, UX is sometimes neglected as postcards are designed to look sharp, instead of leading readers to take the right action.
If you make this mistake, you can end up sending a postcard that looks very nice but fails to move its recipients to engage with your business.
2. Not measuring your campaign’s effectiveness
Write this down on a post-it note, and stick it next to your monitor: “what isn’t measured is missed.” One of direct mail’s most significant advantages over traditional advertising is its measurability — it is much easier to gauge how effective a postcard mailing is than a TV commercial.
It’s important that you focus on optimizing each piece of creative for conversion. It starts with continuous testing of the performance of each campaign and ends with improvements to campaigns based on those results. (That’s why we’ve asked you to Please Stop Wasting Your Money and to Start Tracking.)
If you do not measure the right key performance indicators (KPIs) — and just measure the number of postcards sent, and the cost to do so, is not enough — not only will you not know if your campaign is even working, you won’t be able to identify which areas to change or improve on.
Every so often we find a customer who is focused on cost per piece instead of cost per action. For example, the marketer may send a smaller sized postcard to save money. Then, through testing, they later find out that the larger size postcard may cost a little more, but it converts a much higher rate.
If you do not measure your campaign, you are almost certainly leaving money on the table. So, which KPIs should you be measuring? We dive into greater detail on KPIs and measurements here.
3. Not targeting your postcard mailing correctly (or at all)
One of marketing’s most fundamental rules is to “know your audience.” Do you know who your customers are, or who you want your customers to be? Do you know where they live, what their needs are, how familiar they are with your product (or your competitors’)?
If not, then take the time to research your customers and prospects (your “target market”) so that you can send a targeted mailing.
If you don’t, you risk wasting money by sending postcards to people who have no need for, or interest in, what you’re offering.
4. Not A/B testing
Closely related to measuring your campaign’s effectiveness, A/B testing is a time-tested way to test different variations of your postcard — different offers, or design elements, for instance — and see which performs better.
After all, while there’s something to be said for not fixing what isn’t broken, that doesn’t mean that what isn’t broken can’t be improved upon. Savvy marketers know to vary and test their campaigns to enhance their performance and effectiveness.
You can also test more than just design. Try targeting different audiences, or how consumers respond to the card. For example, could a dentist generate more appointments by having a landing page with an appointment form vs a phone call or email?
This doesn’t need to be complicated. Start testing and optimizing your direct mail campaigns by committing to a test or two a quarter. Sunset your bad ideas, and then ramp-up the tests that generate positive results.
5. Spending Too Much on postage
Quite possibly the most unfortunate mistake of them all is just spending too much. Postage can make-up more than 80% of a postcard marketing campaign and it’s easy to spend more than you have to.
Say, for example, you’re using Every Door Direct Mail or Saturation Mailing to reach a group of neighborhoods around your home. There are over 100 million households where GrowMail’s software can intelligently find postage and printing efficiencies to save you up to 50% off your direct mail campaign. You could be mailing 10,000 pieces for the same price as 5,000.
6. Wasting Too Much Time
It used to take so many steps to send a postcard marketing campaign. You either pay too much for a marketing agency or work with multiple vendors to identifying an audience, build a list, design a postcard, find a printer, choose the right type of postage, and then finally get them to the post office.
The old days of direct mail not only added complexity and took too much time, but also made it hard to get results quickly. That means you were growing slower, and also it took a long time to figure out what works.
Sending a postcard marketing campaign used to take weeks. Now it can be done in less than ten minutes.
[template builders, and software can make it faster / cheaper]
How GrowMail Helps You Avoid These Postcard Marketing Mistakes
We’ve only listed five of the most common mistakes from design, targeting, measuring, testing, and spending too much. These, along with other postcard marketing mistakes, can easily balloon your costs and eat up more resources than necessary. Perhaps even more resources than you can afford to spare.
Fortunately, you can prevent these mistakes from happening and sinking your campaign with a little bit of focus and effort. Postcard marketing software makes running successful direct mail campaigns easier than ever before.
Alternatively, if you don’t have the time or expertise, work with one of GrowMail’s marketing consultants who can deliver in all the areas we just mentioned: design, targeting, measuring, and testing. Often enough, they’ll save you time and funds, while increasing the performance of the campaign, allowing you to grow faster.
Book an Appointment With a GrowMail Marketing Specialist Today!