The Highest Performing Direct Mail Programs I Have Ever Seen (Part One)

One of the cool things about working with multiple clients is I get exposed to a lot of different campaigns and ideas. Through the years, I have seen a few that have really rocked. I thought I would share a few of them with you in this and upcoming blog posts.

This week’s top performer is the Customer Appreciation Card. It’s real simple: you send a holiday card out in early December to all of your current or past customers with a coupon attached or inserted. The card is in an A-7 or similar envelope, so it feels like a greeting card. I have also seen these sent in the middle of the year. Corporate branded creative is typically utilized with store or dealer personalization.

Response rates are normally north of 20% and sometimes exceed 30%. Of course, the offer varies based on what is being sold. But, a simple $10 off coupon can do the job. The timing is great as it can stimulate December gift purchases. It can also result in January purchases, which is quite often a slow time for many businesses.

Hard data proves this form of offer can actually lead to higher shopping cart value, so there’s no problem funding the promotion or achieving good ROI.

Even if you’re selling big-ticket items, this approach can be a winner. It can lead to accessory purchases, solidify the relationship with the customer, and most importantly, get the customer back into the store.

This type of program transcends industry. It works in retail, auto service, and motor sports. I recall that last year, we didn’t offer it to a particular dealer network who had become accustomed to the program the past couple of years. Some of the dealers called the marketing department and asked when it would be offered, stating, “This is the highest performing direct mail program we have ever seen.”

The best part? It’s very cost effective. It is possible to execute this sort of program for the same or less than an ordinary holiday card program, and it can be accomplished in a very automated fashion.

I’m always interested in learning about stuff that works. Do you have one you’d like to share? 

Next time: The highest performing direct mail campaigns I have ever seen Part Two – Lapsed customers reactivated in a big way

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