Remember when we used to write and receive letters? In a digital world it seems like an old-fashioned idea but for marketers the letter really should remain an important tool.
Alongside glossy brochures, in addition to pull-out fold-out pop-up mailers, the humble letter can do a great selling job.
Lois Geller, a US-based marketer recently wrote
We wrote a short, personalized letter that didn’t say a lot more than “This letter is worth $1,500 to you when you buy or lease a brand new Lincoln.” Over a six month period, that little letter sold about half the Lincolns in Canada.
A powerful testimonial. Here are some tips to help you make the most of the letter Direct Mailshot:
1. Make it personal
Of course, databases will ensure you are writing to Mr X or Dear X but keeping it personal means more than that. Ensure the letter reads like it has been written by a human being, and share a personal insight or feeling such as
– ‘I hope you’ll agree with me that….’
– ‘I’ve always found….’
2. Know your target audience
Use the language that they would use. What are their drivers and motivation to buy? What topical or news stories are affecting them at the moment and can be used as a lead-in to your product or service? In fact this is one of the main advantages of the letter-style – while it may be low on design, it means you can send a letter quickly to take advantage of a sudden change in market conditions e.g. a recent hot spell or a change introduced in the Budget etc. It’s a chance to strike while the iron is hot and remain ahead of the competition.
3. Try different approaches
Again, the simplicity and plainness of the letter mailshot means you try different approaches in the same campaign. You can vary the wording and vary the offering to see which approach gets the best response.
4. Make it unique
Use the letter to offer something unique to the reader – whether an exclusive product, special offer or bespoke service. Make the offer easy to understand and to claim – use phone lines, reply addresses as well as the internet to ensure you have catered for your target markets preferred method of contacting further.
Do you agree with us? Do you think letter-style mailshots can generate a good response? We’d love to hear your views and any success stories of your campaigns.
Image Credit: Alan Levine