Once you have decided to do a direct mail campaign, you will want to obtain the best results possible. Getting a better response with direct mail campaigns involves pinpointing your target audience. This can easily be done with direct mail, because you can select your recipient audience by any of several factors that can be important.
- Demographics. After you analyze your product offering, select the demographics that will fit that product, such as age or gender of the user. You can purchase direct mail response consumer lists by age, gender, zip code, income, education, and other more detailed statistics. You can find lists of people who participate in a particular sport, such as golf or soccer.
- Income. There is no use reaching out to a poor audience with an expensive product. Tailor your list to include those who have an adequate income to allow purchase of your item.
- Previous purchases. There are lists available that include people who have already made purchases of similar or identical products. They may be more likely to buy, or to be an easier sell. Other lists include people who have previously used mail order for purchasing.
- Your customer list. Your own customer list is a good place to start, because these are the people who already have dealt with your company, and who are likely to trust your company enough to place an order quickly. They may even look forward to receiving your mail offers.
- Geographical area. Potential customers who live nearby are good contacts for a local business. If, however, you are doing strictly mail order, you may want to extend your potential customer list to include those who live in a wider geographical area.
- Mailing costs. This is another area to consider when planning your direct mail campaign. Are you sending out postcards, envelope mailers, large envelope packages, or samples? What you send, and how much it weighs, are two things that help determine costs. There is a postage break for direct mail, but keeping costs in line with sales is still important.
Finally, you want to be able to track results. Direct mailings can be coded to show which list brings in which results. It may take a few mailings to narrow down your target audience, but once you have a good list, it can be used well. Expect to get average results of 1% to 4% per 100 with direct mailing.