This Direct Mail Marketing Plan offers a company ideas and strategies on how to launch
a successful marketing campaign via direct mail. Direct mail is an effective way to
reach out to potential customers. Not only are consumers more apt to open and read
mail, but direct mail is a measurable way to target specific customers. This document
offers tips and advice on how a company can formulate a direct mail marketing plan and
what factors to consider. This is useful to companies that are interested in direct mail
Direct Mail Marketing Plan
There is a common misconception that the Internet has led to the demise
of direct mail. The fact is that direct mail remains an effective way to
reach out to potential customers. Not only are consumers more apt to
open and read mail (as opposed to email, which they often mark as
SPAM unread), but direct mail is a measurable way to target specific
customers. Only TV and Telephone yield higher responses. In this
document you will find ideas and suggestions for coming up with your
own direct mail marketing plan.
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Start with a Plan
As with any marketing strategy, you need to start with a plan that incorporates your short-term
and long-term goals. A marketing plan should ideally take into account the following:
Long-term and short-term goals
Your company identity/company image
Your company’s overall sales and marketing plan
Your marketing budget
Goals for the specific direct mail piece (have one goal and knock it out of the ballpark!)
Integrate the direct mail strategy with other on-going marketing plans
Be realistic (studies show that to achieve the desired results companies have to deliver
mail four times)
Identify your Target Mailing List
Based on your market, compile a specific target list. This is the single most important thing you
can do to ensure an effective campaign. In order to compile a target mailing list, keep the
following in mind:
Start by profiling the types of customers you wish to make contact with.
Define a list that is large enough to meet your goals, yet small enough that you can afford
to send out mail up to four times.
The list can include existing customers, prospects and suspects!
Try to avoid wasting money by verifying that there are no duplicates and that the address
is accurate (consider running your list through some kind of address verification system).
Refine Your Pitch
Assume that the majority of your mail will be read and make the offer as strong as possible!
Make sure there is a direct relevant connection between your product or service and the
person whom you are mailing.
Make it specific (avoid “call us” or “see our website for more information”)
Be singular. Try and offer one specific thing and keep the letter self-contained so that all
the information they need is right there.
Making it time-specific will add a sense of urgency.
Be exclusive. (Customers will be more inclined to act on the mail if they feel it is being
sent out exclusively to “preferred customers” or “loyal subscribers”).
Buyers love guarantees.
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Choose a format
While postcards have the highest read rates, different products will require different formats. It Is
necessarily in your benefit to get too creative or spend too much more on high quality materials.
When it comes to direct mail, the message is key—and the more direct, clear and succinct you
can be, the better. Some you might wish to consider are:
Postcards: This is the way to go if you have one product and a simple message.
Catalog: Appropriate for more than one product or if product photographs are an integral
part of marketing
Flyers. Great if you have something new to announce.
Larger letter envelopes. This increases the possibilities of being opened.
Letter envelopes. This makes the mail more “personal.”
Finally, direct mail should have a headline to grab the readers’ attention and one strong image.
Consider using a question format or a bold statement to catch their attention. Try out some power
words, such as New, Improved, More, Better, Easy, You. And, whatever you do, don’t forget to
include contact information for customers to contact the company to learn more.
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