When we sit down with a new customer, we like to take a look at their past marketing efforts. We like to see the good, bad and ugly to get a feel for the personality of the customer. We also get to see what has worked in the past, but more importantly, we get to see what hasn’t worked, and we help the customer learn from their mistakes. One of the most common mistakes we see is there is not a clear call to action. And let me give you some advice: providing contact information without a directive is not a call to action.
To quote John Mayer, “Say what you need to say.” If you want people to visit your website, tell them to do so and provide an easy-to-type URL. If you want people to call and make an appointment, make your phone number prominent. If you want people to come to your store, invite them to stop by and let them know you store hours. You could even offer a discount if they mention your mail piece. However, don’t ask your customers to do everything I’ve listed in the same mailing. Pick one thing you want your customers to do, and make that your call to action. Express it clearly and concisely.
If you do want to have multiple calls to action in one direct mail campaign, it is possible to test different versions of your mail piece to see what request had the greatest response. You can evenly divide your mailing list between the number of calls to action you want to test, or you can A/B test a small portion of your mailing list before you send to the remainder. A/B testing is where you test different messages to a percentage of your mailing list, and once you see which version provides the highest response rate, you send that version to the remainder of your mailing list. This is a common practice for email marketing and web design since it take a while to measure the response rates from a direct mail campaign.
Whatever you decide to do for your next direct mail campaign, make sure your message has a very clear call to action, and there isn’t any confusion on what you want your customers to do next.
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