Inbound marketing, or being found, has certainly become the way of marketing promotion these days because let’s face it, broadcasting or outbound marketing doesn’t work, right?
Well, done poorly -as most outbound marketing is, nothing works. If you take your time and create personalized campaigns that not only get the attention of the right prospects, but also offers value in exchange, then outbound marketing can be a very effective component of your overall tactical plan.
The secret to making an advertising or direct mail campaign work these days is to think small, think personal, think value, think follow-up. If you can’t plan and implement each of these steps then your campaign success will be limited.
Small – create the smallest, most information-rich list you can -even if you have to build it yourself from resources at a local library. This way you know that every name on your list belongs to the right association, reads the right magazines or has the right demographic profile.
Personal – When you do your research you might think to include personal details in a mailing that were acquired by a little bit of social media research. Look, getting noticed these days takes work and depending upon the type of client and potential you may be better off writing five hand written letters with specific details than mailing truckloads of generic stuff.
Value – Advertising works when you combine it with a call to action that has value for the reader. Use the web to offer free content, free evaluations, free trials, and access to special events and you’ll start the process of building trust before you try to sell something.
Follow-up – Small batch outbound marketing works best when combined with a personal follow-up mechanism. In your letter tell the reader you are going to call and ask permission to send them or provide them with something of value, and then do it.
I’ve written numerous times about something I call Lumpy Mail. Sending small batches of mail with a packaged item or trinket that helps get your message across is a great way to combine all of the above elements.
The thing about adding this kind of outbound marketing to the mix is that while it comes with a cost, it also offers a great deal of control. It’s hard to know when your inbound marketing is going to kick in or when a journalist is going to profile your business, but with a small batch outbound marketing approach running at all times you know exactly when and how a prospect is going to receive your message.
With all the chatter about inbound marketing and social media it’s easy to overlook some of ways to round out your entire plan with some good old fashioned hand to hand direct mail.
One of my Duct Tape Marketing Consultants provided a case study this week for a campaign she conducted for her own business.
- She built a list of 150 chiropractors in her area from a state board list
- Sent a personal letter to each citing various things she noted about their web sites
- Followed-up by phone and booked 18 appointments
- From those appointments, 5 became clients
Total cost of the program was about 2 days of time and $100 – Revenue generated from the approach is initially in excess of $100,000 and lifetime value, significantly more.
Image credit: chidorian
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