Are Today’s Customers Harder to Reach?

Are Today’s Customers Harder to Reach?

The competition today is humongous!

In our history as a nation, for example in the 1800s, all selling was face-to-face. Store owners studied customer purchases to determine their likes and not so likes of goods and services. Sounds simple, because it was, then.

Now fast forward to the present. It is difficult to get a grasp on why and what a potential customer would buy. There is a loss of useful, outmoded communication channels seceded by the internet and all things technology.

Further, the competition today is humongous. Customers shopping at stores is low, B2B company industry shows are trying to make a comeback, trade publications are disappearing or bought out, and a small business is erratic with selling goods or closed for good.

The timing is right getting back to the basics.

When I put my thoughts together for this post, I realized how much has changed since the pandemic reached our shores in the first quarter of 2020. Companies, big and small, had a very difficult time on how to communicate with prospects and customers. Try this, do that, or even maybe this will work.

Hopefully, the time is right for a change. The pandemic may wind down as we approach the summer of 2021. Fresh cases of Covid-19 are at their low and in single digits of deaths in Illinois. People vaccinated twice are slightly over 50%.

Selling to people in the 1800s.

The biggest takeaway from the 19th Century was face-to-face selling. In the B2B industry, a person may sell a high-cost product or service. The salesperson usually receives a lot of objections. A good salesperson studies his customers and their company. He must know how to react to the objections.

With negotiations, both people must know as much as possible about each other. Each person wants to walk away as a winner.

So, what is different today? We have the technology to meet face-to-face. For example, any good salesperson would say, “I need to set the table on why my product or service is better.” A small ticket price salesperson must also set a table to get a sale. It is not what you know or who you know, it is what you know about the person you are selling to. What does he know about you?

Look at what other companies are doing.

To become a useful tool, you must transform data into information that can help drive strategic direct marketing and selling programs, financial decisions, and product development. To minimize manual data collection and conserve resources, a company should focus on metrics for readily available data.

In today’s direct and digital marketing, data will capture information needed to drive decisions. The idea of having a good marketing automation tool to capture more data at a reasonable price is a worthwhile investment. The Pareto Principal comes into play when you collect data. Twenty percent of your customers usually provide eighty percent of your revenue. Buy a CRM or database and build one today.

Adding value-oriented work habits.

When you summarize feedback in charts, graphs, or simple to understand language, you’ll always know the score. You know if you’re winning or losing–and to what degree. 

Go get’em slugger!

Useful methods of setting a table for a sale.

  1. Printed Materials. If you have not printed marketing materials in sometime, there are many knowledgeable printers to help you with paper ideas, paper types, color, black and white, sizes, postal requirement and so forth. Look up a direct mail company who process mail for delivery is a logical choice.
  2. Contact List. Every business needs a customer and prospect list. The average list may lose 20% of contacts each year. You can count on over 20% based on the present pandemic. Before you do any mailing, search your current customers from accounting. Compare each list and update your mailing customer list. That is just a start. See #5.
  3. Direct Marketing Mail. Whether a large or small business direct mail can deliver. For example, get creative with printed materials. Get creative with the envelope or other size package, so when it reaches the person’s hand and eyes, they have creative printed material, such as a call-to-action.
  4. Communication Channels. Besides mail you should add additional communication channels such as email, landing pages, your website, telephone, zoom, video such as You Tube and other digital marketing techniques. Your choices are many, but it all depends on what your contacts prefer.
  5. Data Management. Personalization assumes that you know something about the people to whom you are mailing, emailing, or sending to a landing page and so on. It is an effective way to keep customers spending their money on your products and services.

Summary

Yes, there are more. However, without having a good contact list, your results are not always what they could be. The key point in any of the communication channels is personalization. You need to collect customer data, such as what channel (email, mail, etc) is the best revenue channel.

A database, such as a CRM, will disclose more about your customers and prospects. Think about using segments in your CRM. Start simple. For example, what buyers are in the top 20% of revenue. They may have different copy than the other 80%.

Here is a collection of articles and posts for each of the five tactical tools from the list above.

mdoc@direct2customers.com

Please share with others–except your competition!

Direct marketing copy is like a puzzle.

Sharing my time with you is not over at the end of a post. There are many ideas I experienced in owning a small business. My ideas about using and writing direct marketing and customer-centric copy are intertwined in the marketing, advertising, and selling content, articles, reports based on my philosophy of people learn by reading, then learn by doing.

Please join our Direct2Customers Marketing Community today!

Learning by reading and doing, marketing, and selling ideas, is what you will find in your Direct2Customer Community. Join us today by clicking on the button.

This is what I do and what I love to do.

Thanks again for reading. Questions?

Mdoc@direct2customers.com or 800-251-3608

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Seven Fundraiser Tips to Reach Supporters…

Seven Fundraiser Tips to Reach Supporters…

and learn how a few tactics will win over your customers.

 

Let me explain.

Let me explain.

Direct Marketing+Mail comprises many distinct elements to help your customers buy your products. When you add them up in your head, you can easily lose track because there are so many.

Never stop at one.

Let us talk about customers. The human mind is very baffling, and depending how their day is going, it can change in a heartbeat. For example, an automobile manufacturer does not just sell cars. They are selling economical transportation to get you to and from work every day. What else are they selling? It depends upon the person. 

A mom with children needing a new car wants lots of space. Safety features also come to mind. What about Kevlar seat covers to keep the interior looking half respectable?  

Dad will want either good mileage, performance, or both. But buying a sedan does not cope well hauling children to sporting events plus equipment. Once the last child is over eighteen, dad may finally get the sedan of his dreams.

As one can see, there are a lot of hot buttons to push to get someone to buy. Whatever product a company sells, there are many variables to consider. In these cases, a person should start thinking like enthusiasts. Focus on the payoff or reward more than on the product. Take a cue from fundraisers. That’s a good moon arising! 

 

There are a lot of hot buttons to push to get someone to buy.

Take a cue from fundraisers.
  • Whatever product a company sells, there are many variables to consider. In these cases, a person should start thinking like enthusiasts. Focus on the payoff or reward more than on the product. Take a cue from fundraisers.
  • How do professional nonprofit fundraisers raise millions of dollars for their non-profits every year? What are their secrets to fundraising? The answer is trust and establishing confidence in the direct communication copy.

As promised, here are seven enthusiastic ideas to make more money.

  1. Put yourself in an enthusiastic mind frame as you review your copy. Ask why. It is important to clarify “the why” you are asking for a donation or a sale.

A fundraiser does not want money but an agreement for their cause. The goal is to get people to support and invest in an organization. Or with a profit company, get the buyer to tell others about their product and experience.

  1. A fundraiser copywriter puts the facts about the organization in small type but emphasizes the benefits, payoff, and rewards. The idea behind this brings the reader onto a center stage in the copy using big, bold letters.

Any for profit company can send their customers to a website landing page with a similar look of the mailer and continue the reward and pay off in the copy. Once your customer reaches the web, accentuating your product with actual photography or a video is like the icing on a cake.

  1. Typically, an enthusiast for a cause wants to see more information in writing and on paper. Your customers probably do as well. 

There is no faster way to lose an enthusiast or a customer than to stop at one communication. Follow with another direct-mail piece that has continuity with the first communication. The piece should contain crafted stories, including pictures of other customers in action using your product. Do not forget email or other channels of communication they use.  

  1. A good idea is to reference the first mailing to build on the enthusiasm and the donors’ or customers’ emotions. That is another reason message frequency is so important.
  1. A single piece of direct mail can easily develop into many communications and using other channels of communication preferred by the readers.

Fund raisers take some time to learn more about their donors. This is a vital strategy in the non-profit industry and like a customer-centric marketing strategy for a company.

  1. Do not worry about redundancy. Remember, they bombarded people with thousands of messages per day. That is another good reason to keep continuity going from the first moment during the campaign to whenever the campaign ends.
  1. The image you project about your product or service or your charity and the value it brings to your customers or donors can be more important than the product or the service. To a charity donor, we consider it as an investment into the charitable organization.

Here is a takeaway from fundraisers for your profit business:

Learning a buying reason for a group of customers on how they use your product can lead your company to better marketing results. You can write more relevant copy, which can induce people to respond more often. Excellent results will lead to more customers.

I trust that was what you were looking for!

Please share with others–except your competition!

Direct marketing copy is like a puzzle.

Sharing my time with you is not over at the end of a post. There are many ideas I experienced in owning a small business. My ideas about using and writing direct marketing and customer-centric copy are intertwined in the marketing, advertising, and selling content, articles, reports based on my philosophy of people learn by reading, then learn by doing.

Please join our Direct2Customers Marketing Community today!

Learning by reading and doing, marketing, and selling ideas, is what you will find in your Direct2Customer Community. Join us today by clicking on the button.

This is what I do and what I love to do.

Thanks again for reading. Questions?

Mdoc@direct2customers.com or 800-251-3608

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Direct marketing has hundreds of tactics to reach your customers…

Direct marketing has hundreds of tactics to reach your customers…

Direct Marketing Has Hundreds of Tactics to Reach Your Customers

More and more companies, big and small, are searching for direct marketing ideas. *

 

The efficiencies of direct marketing led to a long success for many small business marketing firms and importantly, how to make them work for your small business today. Today I read a report that larger companies are eyeing ways to use it as well.

In small businesses today, B2B, healthcare practitioners, start-up companies, and retailers, advertising to the masses is possible but not likely effective. In fact, small business advertising was and still is harder for a small business to function properly and to sustain growth, but even worse in the pandemic.

There is a lot of noise created by the thousands of mid to large companies trying to get the attention of any person and convince them to buy their products. There is no room for a small business to even think of trying.

Did you ever travel with your favorite sports team to an away game? I bet the noise was deafening whenever the home team had the ball, were at bat or handling the puck.

That is a metaphor for the present state of small business advertising today. For your message read or heard by a customer or prospect, you must shout louder than the home team. Here, a small business can never match the advertising dollars of the much larger companies or worse yet, maybe their competition.

Direct marketing techniques are more than a single communication channel.

Direct Marketing is a good defense communication channel when using direct mail. Direct Mail is an important channel of direct marketing, and many of the small businesses that use it will agree. Even the postal service offers programs, such as Informed Delivery and Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) is affordable for the many small business’s market.

“Direct marketing means delivering an opportunity to buy directly to a single customer through any channel that the customer may use or prefer.”

Or what we call, direct 2 customers.

No mid to large corporation would ever use direct marketing in their advertising based on the definition above. But there are looking. Yet, a small business can and should use direct marketing in all their advertising to customers.

Specifically, direct marketing has a variety of tactics to reach customers. A marketing message can gather the reader’s attention with captivating copy, an impactful design, and crafting an offer that is hard for anyone to refuse. Using a website landing page will keep the communication moving to a sale.

If you like that idea, let us look at another strategy when combined with direct marketing to speed up company growth.

Today's small business marketing environment is ideal for using direct marketing.

First, advertising is a tactic of marketing. Everything marketing starts and ends with your customers. You need to listen to them and respond to them. Customers will share their thoughts about your products.

If you believe that this is the “age of the customer,” then it is the perfect time for you to behave like a customer you would love to have as a customer. Ask your customers daily.

As a marketer, the purest, most simple goal you should have is to get a potential customer to receive your marketing message, read the message and make a purchase. Direct marketing’s developed PROVEN strategies and tactical tools for helping customers to respond to your message. Check out the graphic on our web page today.

In summary,

Knowing what type of marketing works well today is not a guarantee for tomorrow. However, when you stay true to your commitment on gaining a better understanding of your customer’s needs and wants, you will always know when a change is in the wind and figure out how to react to it.

*Direct Marketing Solutions Market 2020 Size, Share, Forecast to 2026: MRM//McCann, Acxiom, Leo Burnett, Epsilon, SourceLink, Merkle, Harte-Hanks Direct, Rapp, Wunderman

The market study also includes the detailed data regarding the performance of all the market leaders. For more information, https://www.orbismarketreports.com/sample-request/163321?utm_source=Maia

 

 

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How to Survive and Succeed in A New Small Business…

How to Survive and Succeed in A New Small Business…

...or To Correctly Reorganize One

Making either decision is difficult. Nobody wants to fail. If you decide not to give up the ghost, and give it a shot, keep it simple. Look closely at your company’s operations and strategies. Determine what you need to improve.

What do you know about your customers and prospects? Customers are hard to get or to keep. Marketing and sales must perform and to meet their goals.

There are a variety of practical steps to take with marketing and advertising your company’s products and services to your prospects and customers.

First, let me talk about what a company needs.

(Top of right column) ->

What your company needs.

You need a business marketing strategy on how you plan to sell your products and services to prospects. When you sell and get a few customers, you will need a strategic marketing plan in place to boost your customer totals and revenue.
For a small business, I highly recommend a direct marketing strategy. Direct marketing means just that–sending a message directly to a prospect or customer who more than likely will make a purchase.

Next, you will need a list of contacts that have a propensity to buy and tell them why your product is the right choice for them. You will need a copywriter that knows persuadable copywriting.

Last you need creative marketing and advertising offers that your products were made for them. Direct marketing goals include a prospect to buy directly from a campaign, lead generation activities, and/or supporting your field selling activity.

The Heart of Business Success- 

Prospects and customers. 

As the sales trickle in, a customer-centric marketing strategy outline should be on your whiteboard, or at the minimum, in your head. If the customer-centric marketing strategy eludes you, here’s a smart start. 

For a new, or to reorganize a small business, a customer- centric marketing strategy means you have a goal to fulfill all the needs and wants each customer expects, with a passion to succeed, provide an extra step of service, and do it all with a smile. 

Stop and think for a bit about the block quote above. Then place a customer in your shoes. How would you react?

How do you decide to purchase a product or service comparable in pricing and some resemblance of similarity? Was it price sensitive? Did it come in assorted colors? How was the service? After your purchase, what did you think about the customer service?  

Another way to look at customer-centric marketing is-everything marketing starts and ends with your customer… cater to them, listen to them, and react to them. The results are amazing.  

When you email  a purchaser, ask them what they  think about your service or product. Their  answers will probably show you are already doing customer-centric marketing. The best marketing strategy that pinpoints the many reasons to keep and gain new customers.  

Summary 

However, many people, who work in a small business management capacity, who read the preceding sentence will comment, “I know my customers and know what they want. I need more customers because I want to grow.” 

 Do they? Do you? 

Your time is better suited to listen to, talk to, and better understand your customers. This can increase your marketing results, customer acquisition and customer retention. 

Here are 17 short sentences that can help you learn more about customers. Plus, there is no rule saying you will not be able to use it with prospects. 

 

1. Keep it simple. 

2. Use automation such as a CRM.  

3. Learn and use analytics every single day. 

 

4. Halloween is every day. Customers get treats and offers to build on their relationships. 

 

5. Customer-centric marketing strategies remind us to learn more about customers.  

6. Prospects are potential customers which require  stronger messages of attention. 

 

7. Develop customer profiles pays you repeatedly.

 

8. Think of direct and customer-centric promotional  strategies as a well-oiled machine. 

 

9. Your response rate will hit double digits. 

10. Have you heard the phrase “Direct-to-Customers Marketing?”  Remember you heard it here first. 

 

11. Do you follow a customer’s journey? Make sure it’s  connected to your data and analytics. 

 

12. Thinking creatively can help you get more customer information. 

 

13. Direct-2-customers  marketing  can increase the likelihood of a two-way communication with each customer. 

 

14. Increasing customer conversations (your customer service) can increase data collecting  for additional personalization. 

 

15. Better customer data leads to future relevant communication. 

 

16. Customer acquisition is easier when you “buy in to a long tail.” 

 

17. Create a great opening line for networking and your direct marketing toolset to increase customer connections. 

 

   Please share with others – except your competition!

   Sharing time with you is genuinely appreciated. Please join our Direct2Customers Marketing Community today!

  Learning and doing, marketing, and selling ideas, is what you’ll find at your Direct2Customer Community. 

  It’s what I do. It’s what I love to do. 

  Thanks again for reading. Questions?  Mdoc@direct2customers.com or 800-251-3608 

         

I thought you might want to know a few promos from the USPS…

I thought you might want to know a few promos from the USPS…

Subscribe to Our Direct-2-Customer Community-It’s FREE

I thought you might want to know a few promos from the USPS…

The USPS classifies most mail based on the dimensions of the mailpiece. I consider the most common mailers “letter-sized”, so they measure 6.125″ x 11″ or smaller. Be aware that letter-sized mail that is square requires a non-machinable surcharge. Said another way, postage is higher for letter-sized mail that is square-shaped.

Post card rates, which apply to individually mailed postcards 4.25″ x 6″ or smaller, will increase one cent to 36 cents apiece. Keep in mind that the “postcard rate” for bulk mail is not available.

Bulk Mail Postage Rates. Overall, first class mail postage rates expected to increase 1.8% while marketing mail will increase 1.5%. Depending on the distribution of your mailing list, and USPS location where you drop your bulk mail, rates will vary.

Move update. The USPSR recently published a Move Update Methods Requirements Fact Sheet, available on the PostalPro website. This sheet lays out the various USPS products and services available to meet the Move Update requirement. It requires mailers to update all addresses on First-Class Mail, Parcel Select Lightweight, and USPS

Marketing Mail within 95 days prior to the postage statement finalization date.

The Postal Service Informed Delivery service allows customers to see the incoming mail pieces being delivered to their mailbox each day. You can take part in Informed

Delivery Campaigns by providing color images of mail pieces along with links to related digital content.

Recipients can access these links from their daily USPS email notifications. This is an excellent opportunity for mailers to “double down” on their touch points with mail recipients-a digital touch before they open their mailbox and then again when they open the mail piece.

Visit a local USPS or contact a direct mail company member in this LinkedIn Group,

Direct Marketing and Mail Success

Group to learn more about these programs available from the United States Postal Service.

Please share with others – except your competition! Your time is genuinely appreciatedDon’t forget to join our Direct2Customers Marketing Community today in the form below!

Learning and doing, marketing, and selling ideas, is what you’ll find at your Direct2Customer community. 

It’s what we do. It’s what we love to do. 

Thanks again for reading. Questions?  Mdoc@direct2customers.com or 800-251-3608 

     

Are Today’s Customers Harder to Reach?

So, what is different today? We have the technology to meet face-to-face. For example, any good salesperson would say, “I need to set the table on why my product or service is better.” A small ticket price salesperson must also set a table to get a sale. It is not what you know or who you know, it is what you know about the person you are selling to. What does he or she know about you?

read more

How Every Direct Marketing Strategy Will Perform in Your Business…

View marketing as a science. Whatever product or service you offer your audience, everyone is different. The larger the audience, you must adjust your data collection and analysis. You will need to adjust or add new segments and customer profiles on a schedule. Change comes and goes differently within your audience. You are always reading and always doing.

read more

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