You may have gotten these yourself – a form letter trying to entice you into buying something? But direct mail marketing can be so much more than that, and can be a useful tool for you, your writing, your services, or your business.
- You are not selling something – you are creating an opening, a lead that will hopefully bring a sale in the future.
- Start with an attention gripping headline – entice them to read further.
- Sell the benefits not the product or service – what is of greatest concern to the recipient, how can you meet their needs?
- Keep the writing conversational – personalise the letter and write as though it is a conversation.
- Get to the point quickly – don’t waffle, make your point in the first couple of lines.
- Avoid large chunks of text – break it up using dot points or numbered lists (no more than 5 or 6 points), use bold text, use coloured text, write in short paragraphs.
- Keep it to one page in length – people are busy and often time-poor, don’t put them off reading your letter by turning it into a novel.
- Add value – offer something to the recipient: a free sample product or chapter, free tips, etc.
- Include a call to action – ask the reader to register on your website, follow you on Facebook or Twitter, to call you, etc. Give them a reason to act now (to access what you are offering for free).
- Reiterate your call to action in the postscript – the eye scrolls right to the bottom of a letter before returning to read the whole thing – include your call to action or your key points in the postscript to maximise the effectiveness of the letter.
- Include a guarantee – this puts your integrity on the line. Offer deliver within a certain timeframe, a discounted price, etc.
- Leave your contact details – always include some way that the recipient can contact you should they have further questions.
- Follow-up – carefully selecting your target audience and ensure you follow-up, preferably with a call, but possibly with an email or message. You have built the link with the letter, the follow-up is your chance to further develop that relationship and begin to work towards a closed deal.
Have fun finding and developing your business relationships!
Photo credit: Direct Mail