An advertising campaign that seeks to bring about an action taken by a targeted group of customers, like placing an order, visiting a store or website, is considered direct marketing. Direct marketing can be telemarketing, social media, email, point of sale, or even via post. A good direct marketing campaign focuses on promoting a specific product or service, and is best described as a ‘call to action’. Two of the most effective ways to conduct a direct marketing campaign is through email marketing and social media.
What is the purpose behind a direct marketing campaign? You might want to launch a campaign if you’re interested in:
- Building relationships with potential customers
- Testing the appeal of a new product or service
- Provide relevant content to customers and prospects
- Increase your sales
A direct marketing strategy will allow you to promote your products and services to the consumers who are looking for them. However, it is important to note that a direct marketing campaign requires meticulous planning and an understanding of the how the process works. Let’s look at how social media and email and enhance your direct marketing efforts.
Whether it’s boosting your company’s online presence, your website’s SEO ranking, or providing brand awareness in a crowded space, social media continues to be a leading light. It’s a great way to build anticipation around an upcoming product, or providing discount codes to your online followers, for example. Social media can also be used to mine for customer reviews and user generated content that you can use to your benefit. For instance, taking reviews from your Facebook page and making them part of your next post. A glowing testimonial from a satisfied customer will not only lend credibility to your business, but will also promote your social account.
Social media is also an easy and cost effective way to test any creative decisions you may want to make. You can put your choices out there and the reactions from people online will tell you which way to go. For example, if you can’t decide which picture to use in your next advertising campaign, the public can help make that choice for you.
Furthermore, you can, and should, cross promote your marketing channels through social media. Whenever you send existing customers or potential leads anything in the mail, you should view it as an opportunity to also promote your online presence.
Email is the preferred marketing channel as far as consumers are concerned. Research has shown that 60% of consumers would rather get an email about a promotion than text messages. Email is even preferred to social media campaigns. A survey conducted by the Direct Marketing Association showed that email achieved a median return on investment of 122%, which far outstrips the ROI generated by any other direct marketing channel.
Emails are easily customizable. You can insert the subscriber’s name in the subject lines, and even create an email that targets a customer’s specific interests. Because email is such a simple tool, it is also easy to test, optimize and continually improve upon. You can find out pretty quickly which elements of a different emails appeal to your audience, and hone your email campaigns to get significantly better results, leading to increased ROI. The fact that emails can be automated is a huge advantage. This means you reduce the number of hours spent working on sending out a ton of emails, giving you and your employees more time to take care of the day to day business. And, if you needed further convincing, email marketing is environmentally friendly too.
Advantages of Direct Marketing
Finding new customers – Direct marketing helps you build a list of potential new customers, who are likely to buy your product or service.
Communicate with existing customers – For a lot of companies, repeat business or upselling forms the bulk of their transactions. Staying in touch with customers is easy with direct marketing.
Quick production and turnaround – It’s easy to get emails customized and ready to go, or social media posts lined up to publish well in advance.
Branding – This may seem like an expensive notion, but when you create a cohesive and well thought out direct marketing campaign, you have already created a recognizable company brand.
Direct marketing is one of the most effective methods of getting results for your business that are clearly measurable.