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What Do Your Mailings Say About You?

Remember the old phrase, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”? That’s true in marketing, too. What do your marketing campaigns say about you?

Let’s look at two different approaches.

Dear homeowner,

We’re having a big sale! Come into our showroom this weekend and check out our wide variety of merchandise. You’re sure to find something you can’t resist! Take advantage of big discounts all day!

In the eyes of the recipient, what does this say about the company sending it? It tells her that the company wants to cast a wide net. It just wants to get people in the door as inexpensively as possible.

Now let’s look at another approach.

Dear Michael,

Thanks for being one of our best customers. We’re thrilled that you’ve chosen us for your golfing needs. On Thursday, we’re having an exclusive sale on sporting equipment for our top customers only. Bring in this coupon and get a 25% discount.

What underlying marketing message does this send? It tells the customer that the retailer is interested in him individually and values his long-term customer loyalty. It tells him that the company values his business enough to make an investment in him, by understanding his preferences and needs (through collected data), and by sending him a high-quality communication.

When you send out marketing communications, you are really sending two messages: your written marketing message and a subtle, unspoken message about the recipient’s value to you. Are you sending the right messages?

Get Started with Print Personalization

Personalized print marketing gets results, but what if you’re a newcomer to the game? How do you get started? If you want to begin sending your customers relevant, personalized messages, here are three questions that will get you off to a great start.

What are your goals?

What are the goals of your campaign? Be specific. “To increase sales” isn’t sufficient. If you’re an auto dealership, your goal might be to get customers to schedule their 50,000-mile scheduled maintenance. For a bookstore, it might be to get customers to attend a book signing by a local author. Identify the specific action you want the customer to take.

What data do you have?

Do you have a customer database? If so, what’s in it? Do you have names and addresses only? Email addresses, past purchase history, or other demographics? Or do you need to start from scratch? If you need help understanding what data you have and how to use it, let us take a look. Once we understand what you’ve got, we will know whether you’re ready to start designing your personalized campaign, and if not, we can advise you in purchasing lists or appending your data to give you more fields to work with.

Who’s your audience?

Know your target audience. If you are selling women’s spa treatments, you don’t want the message to go to the men in your database unless you are prompting them to buy gifts for their wives. Likewise, you aren’t going to say “thanks for being a valued customer” to someone who hasn’t purchased from you in two years. You need to decide what cut of your database (or your target list) is going to receive your message.

Once you know how all the elements come together, you can begin crafting a personalization strategy that will reap big results. Need help? Give us a call. That’s why we’re here.

Have You “Touched” Your Customer Recently?

How often do you reach out and ‘touch” your customers with some kind of marketing contact?

Business

Successful marketers have regular contact with their customers, whether they are selling something or not. This contact keeps you relevant. It keeps you top of mind. It sends the message that you are progressive and that you care about your customers’ business.

Best in Class Examples:

Let’s look at a couple of examples of non-sales touches taken from the Print on Demand Initiative’s case study database:

• To nurture customer loyalty, a manufacturer launched a quarterly personalized customer newsletter. They segment the newsletter by vertical market and use personalized URIs to track which articles customers read. This gives the manufacturer invaluable insight into its customers’ business needs.

• One software manufacturer sends a personalized greeting card at the holidays to stay top of mind and demonstrate their cross-media capabilities. In addition, to stay in front of customers year round. they include a personalized calendar with extensive personalized imagery.

• Using an automated system, dental practices can now send automated, personalized appointment reminders using their customers’ preferred method of contact—personalized e-mall, text message or postcard.

These are just three examples. but there are many other ways to touch your customers. These include surveys. open house or seminar invitations. birthday cards, company announcements and more.

Personalization—the De Facto Standard

Notice that these campaigns contain personalization—and yours should too.

Just look at all of the other ways customers are being ‘touched’ these days. Their bills are personalized.Their online transactions shopping and everything around them is personalized. You should personalize your direct mail and e-mail communications. too. even if it’s nothing more than greeting the person by name. You want to stand out to your customers for what you are doing instead of what you are not.

So reach out and ‘touch’ your customers. Do it regularly. Do it often.

At Classic Litho & Design, we can assist you with adding and setting up personalization to your marketing efforts. Give us a call: (310) 224-5200

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