Direct Mail Marketing Mistakes You’ve Got To Avoid

May 3, 2012 · Posted in Business 

There’s a large amount of bad marketing out there, but are you able to guess what the most serious misstep is in direct mail marketing? Ok, maybe I should have started with the five largest mistakes. I could probably list 5 times that many, but for today’s article let’s focus on the most frequently seen mistakes that are out there.

Boring Materials

The 1st mistake I often see is companies marketing on plain blue paper with black ink. Yawn! No business will ever stick out using blue paper. You may well think you are original, but everyone uses colored paper nowadays. It is not new anymore. In the current day’s marketing you want to stick out. You likely wanted to hear something else, but I will not sugarcoat this – you must be bold, brash, and brazen. You need design, gloss, and a professional image.

Do-It-Yourself Printing

Next up, the made-at-home look. Do not let your business flyers look like they were produced on your budget printer and done up in a Comic Sans font. That has no appeal. I see this all the time and it says to me that the business just doesn’t see the value of professional marketing.

You should consider what others will think when they see your materials. It’s true, you may not have a big marketing budget when you’re starting. You’re also correct that it’s better to be sending than not sending. But your priority number one is for you to be in a position to afford professionally produced marketing collateral as fast as practical. Not having a good marketing campaign is like preparing for a marathon without jogging shoes – you’re not going to move particularly fast or for long.

Bad Photography

Listen up! I’ve had it with terrible business head-shots. This guy looks like he asked his wife to take his photo at his desk. He’s wearing an old shirt that does not fit, a cheesy moustache, glasses and a goofy grin. Folks – you’ve got to remember that this is your business we’re talking about. If you do not look professional, nobody will call you.

Be bold and distinctive without going over the top. Dress professionally, groom yourself and have a cameraman that specialises in business photography take your picture “model style.” They’ll take a collection of fast photographs while you’re moving around. This is how a good spontaneous picture with a honest and engaging smile is taken.

An Article that Teases

If you are sending out articles as a part of your marketing campaign, but you are only including a few paragraphs and the remainder is at your website, then you’re just teasing your prospect. If you require a name and email at your website before they can read rest of the story, think again. No way! Those are the 2 words that will pop into ninety-nine-percent of your leads’ minds if they even get that far. By making it hard for your leads to even read a straightforward article, you are letting folks know that before anything else you are a salesperson and you are more focused on getting their names on a list instead of being really helpful.

You need your database to be populated by folks who took some time on their own to signup for whatever you have on offer. These are the people you need on your mail list, not those that you’ve conned into being there. Trust is everything in business – do not give your customers the impression you are just sending them teasers in order that you can get them on your list.

Marketing Other Businesses

When your flyers go out do they include marketing space for other companies? If you’re doing this, then your marketing is coming across as a cheap advertisement sheet at best – and if you’re using the above method too – a sleazy salesman at worst. Don’t allow this to happen to you! Do not get into co-op deals with other local businesses, let the coupon-book companies handle that.

When you spend the time to have quality looking marketing collateral made for you, that you’re going to put out there for the community to see, make sure that the focus is on you and the value that your company can deliver.

So, in closing: Spend the capital to make your business look professional. That means top quality design, printing and photographs. Are you a professional CPA? Get professional looking CPA branded marketing. Are you a property agent – get designer looking collateral with your real estate branding. Basically, unless you’re a graphic design business, that means hire it out and let the experts do it.

The founding partner of The Lones Group, Denise Lones brings over 20 years of experience in the real estate industry. With expertise in strategic marketing, business analysis, branding for real estate agents and real estate coaching, Denise is nationally recognized as the go-to for all things “real estate.”

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