If you’re like most small business owners, running your business is not a problem, but marketing may be. When it comes to best practices, creating relevant and personalized communications are the most important factors for small business marketing success. Direct mail, like a good conversation, should be engaging and interactive. It represents a dialogue between you and your audience and presents an ideal opportunity to develop, build, and expand your business connections.
Make sure your customers see that you know who they are, what they like, and what they can expect from you. The easiest way to do this effectively is to leverage the data you already have within your organization and compose your communications using relevant, personalized information to most successfully garner the result you are seeking. For example:
1. Address customers by name, always thank them for their business, and recognize that they have a relationship with you. You may even want to refer specifically to the last time they purchased from you if you haven’t seen them in a while.
2. Recommend a product that complements the one they recently purchased. You can learn from the marketing masters at Amazon and McDonald’s by offering suggestions for additional products and services that other customers have wanted.
3. There is nothing more powerful than social proof, so leverage social media wherever you can. By asking customers to rate or comment on your products and services, they become advocates for you. In 2009 Nielsen reported that 90 percent of global consumers trust their friends for advice on potential purchases. The second-place finisher was consumer opinions that are posted online. In other words, social media can provide a great way for you to influence future purchase decisions.
4. Maximize statements, invoices, and direct mail pieces by recognizing the needs and purchase behavior of your customers. You can create variable messages on your statements, highlighting additional services and products. This marketing tactic can actually turn your statement into a money-making marketing device that requires no additional postage.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Diamond Marketing Solutions
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