Monthly Archives: June 2013

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Five Direct Mail Marketing Mistakes You’ll Want to Avoid

Direct mail can produce results, but in order to get those results you have to execute it correctly. Here are five common direct mail marketing mistakes you’ll want to avoid:

Launching a mishmash of marketing efforts without an overall plan. In order for your direct mail marketing program to be a success, you’ve got to embrace every stage of the customer lifecycle:

Lead-generation phase – Everyone understands this stage. This is when you try to attract the attention of potential customers.
Nurture phase – Once you’ve developed some leads, your next challenge is encouraging those prospects to take the next step. This is the time to feature customer testimonials, make special offers, compare your products/services to those of competitors, and send out regular announcements regarding any awards, improvements or new offerings.
Purchase phase – Once money changes hands (or contracts are signed), the purchase phase is in play. Your goal at this stage is to maintain the customer’s trust and confidence so they’ll happily segue into the “loyalty” phase. At the very least, send a welcome card that congratulates the person on their purchase and reiterates some of the benefits and advantages of your product or service.
Loyalty phase – Instead of letting customers fall through the cracks after they’ve made a purchase, offer them special discounts on follow-up services, upgrades and new purchases; ask for feedback (surveys are great); and request their help with referrals.

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Opening Doors with Word-of-Mouth Marketing

According to WOMMA (Word of Mouth Marketing Association) a whopping 92% percent of consumers worldwide trust recommendations from friends and family more than any form of advertising. And, when asked what sources “influence your decision to use or not use a particular company, brand or product,” 72% claim reviews from family members or friends exert a “great deal” or “fair amount” of influence.

Sure. Okay. But you can’t control what people tell their friends and family about your product or service, right? Wrong. Customer service and advertising are actually the two most powerful drivers of word-of-mouth marketing.

Satisfy their Customer Service Needs First

There’s nothing like exemplary customer service to get people talking about your business. But don’t make the mistake of believing you only need to be better than your direct competitors. Your customers and prospective clients are actually judging you on how well your service stacks up against UPS, Wal Mart, Amazon, and all the other service providers they use. They don’t differentiate, and neither should you: Study how companies in other industries handle things, and incorporate their best ideas into your own service offerings.

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Who’s Talking About Your Business Online?

With all the places for people to post their personal opinions online today, it’s more important than ever that you know how to monitor and track what’s being said about you, your products and services.

A few positive tweets or blog postings from respected sources (“He was smart and savvy from beginning to end; I’d recommend his services to anyone.”) can have new customers clamoring for your attention – especially if you’re an independent sales agent whose livelihood depends on referrals, word-of-mouth marketing and repeat business. While negative listings on any of the peer-review sites (“The lobby was filthy and the customer service non-existent.”) can just as easily send sales into a slide.

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