should be in a museum next to a T-Rex.
How do I know direct mail works? I have had several giant postcards
that mailed more than 500,000 pieces. One mailed to 1 million homes.
I wrote several B2B letters that worked very well. The last one we
mailed out only 80.... we ended up with $98,000 in contracts.
Using DM on Linkedin connections:
Most offliners are having a hard time figuring out Linkedin. Most are
anxious to spam the heck out of every connection they meet... and
make zero money while risking getting banned.
If you are targeting a specific market, Linkedin is a diamond Rolodex
of potential clients.
Here is how you work in a DM campaign for Linkedin:
Either through connecting with prospects or 'fishing' them in search,
or through groups, get their info. I do this by viewing their profile. I
will find their website link and this usually reveals a lot of pertinent
info I need. I already have the contacts name (thanks to Linkedin),
now I just need their address (if not on their site, Google it).
I then create a letter (postcards are largely ineffective in this type
of DM strategy, explained below) and send it out. The key to your
success or failure (besides how good the piece is), is FOLLOW UP!
This is one area when I contact them via Linkedin. A few days after
I mail the letter I send them a message (or call). This way they have
received my letter (which I call a 'warmer'). They now have a reference
point for which I can start a conversation. (not having a reference point
is what makes 'cold calling' so difficult for both parties).
Most will respond to a linkedin message or email in a positive way... as
long as the 'warmer' didn't make them throw-up.
Key ingredients you must have in your direct mail piece
1a. "How you doin"... your piece must grab their attention and inspire them
to carve out 10 seconds of their day to read. (it is a misconception that
everyone reads postcards just because all is visible. About 30% don't read
a word. The images or attention grabbing devices like an impactful headline
need to be thought out and RELATIVE.
2a. "WTF do you want?" Whether it be a postcard, letter or even a flyer. You must
give them something quickly to answer the 'why should I keep reading this?' No
matter how fancy the piece looks, or how awesome the headline- all else must
keep working them down, line per line. They want to stop reading so your
mission, if you choose to accept it is to be strategic in your wording.
3a. Now what? Once you prod, pull and drag them through your piece, you
need to reward them. If they are still reading your chance of getting a response
is good... unless you go flaccid like a 80 year old man doing a polar plunge.
How to achieve the above
1b. Visuals play a HUGE part in any mail piece, including letters. My $98k
letter utilized a very old direct mail 'grabber'. I had my client glue a penny
to the top of each letter. The sole purpose of doing this is to create interest.
I find it important to tie in the 'grabber' to the piece right away. In my case
it referred to saving money. It is vital to realize the most important part of
a letter is not the letter, it's the envelope! If you are doing a B2B campaign
you do NOT want to give away your letter is an ad. I had my client use
a colored envelope (beige in this case) and commemorative stamps (which
cost the same as standard stamps).
Using a handwritten font addressed to a specific person in the business
will get you past majority of the 'gate keepers'. Most B2B mail dies
at the hands of office staff... this is why postcards are so ineffective
to this type of prospect.
Adding an image of yourself to a letter or postcard helps build confidence
in the prospect. They feel more secure knowing who is talking to them. In
a postcard I like to use a 'guarantee' as a caption next to it or under it. Be
careful on adding generic photos.
Pictures say 1000 words, we don't want that so choose all your images carefully.
Make sure they are relevant. Don't add pictures to fill space. Pictures tell,
2b. Now that you got their attention, you need to keep it. If you are targeting
specific clients, this is easy as long as you know what is biting their ass. If
you create websites you talk about 'why your website could be robbing
you of thousands of dollars EVERY month". Always focus on the pain first,
then you hit them with the "I can turn your website into a magnate for
new customers". I don't care if you sell SEO, accounting, consulting or
dog poo clean-up. First salt the wound and that will compel them to read...
as long as they have the wound you are irritating. Know your target!
When using letters break it up with subheads. Keep paragraphs short and
be very picky on adding lots of filler/fluff. Add testimonials if you have them,
but box them so they stand out.
DO NOT be afraid to add handwritten touches like arrows, stars or even
sentences. I promise you it increases readership. Copydoodles have worked
well for me.
3b. After all of that you need to get them to initiate an action. One way is
to offer a free analysis ( I love using 'check up'), or a free consultation via
phone, in person, skype or email (give them options). The important thing
is that you give value to your time. "FREE Website Diagnosis (normally $97)"
This may seem dumb, but tell them to contact you now to set up their
freebie. Response rates are proven to increase when you direct the
prospect to make an action.
Mention your linkedin profile in your contact info. Make sure your profile
looks good and informative in case they check into you.
Good luck with it and remember the key to success or failure is following up.
Paul McQuillan Marketing