What to Ask Your Direct Mail Company
If you own a business or manage a business, you know how important it is to ask questions. You ask pertinent questions of your employees, your board of directors and of your vendors. And...as you know, sometimes there are certain questions that can be more helpful than others. If you use direct mail as a part of your marketing master plan, there are some questions you should ask of your direct mail service company. Getting the most out of your financial investment into your direct mail marketing should be of utmost importance. So, here are a few questions you should ask your service company before you start your next campaign.
The first question you ask should be about the length of time they have been in the business. You don’t want to hire someone who has been only printing a few weekly pamphlets for a local church for a couple of months. You want a printing company who can handle a large volume of printing pieces and can get them out in a timely fashion. If they have been around for a long time, ask how long they have been doing direct marketing pieces, what the volume is and who are their customers. It helps if it is a business like yours so that you know that they understand your project. There are a lot of moving parts to a direct mailing campaign whether it is a postcard, envelope, snap pack or a yellow letter, the service company needs to know about postal regulations and the ever changing postal landscape. They need to know how to prepare your mail properly for the best pricing and stamping. And they need to know how to get it out and delivered as quickly as possible. They need to understand your business and take the time to appreciate your needs, be responsive to your calls, and work with you to improve any problems.
Next, ask what additional services they may offer. Most direct mail service companies will be able to help you with more than just printing your pieces and sticking a stamp on the mailer. They want you to be successful in your endeavor so that you will use them again for the next campaign. An excellent service company understands that good direct mail comes from a combination of solid lists, excellent content, interesting design, and good offers.
Ask the service company how they can combine your direct mail programs with other marketing applications. Direct mail companies should know and understand the importance of a versatile marketing strategy. You need many different ways to reach prospective clients and customers. They need to be able to offer you a variety of choices in marketing funnels and coordinate them in a manageable way for you and for them
Another question to ask is what kind of printing can they do. Can they print postcards on both sides? Do they have a folding machine for brochures? There are many different kinds of direct mail along with many different types of audiences that will respond differently to different types of mailings. You may want to just send out postcards for your first mailing in a campaign and then you may want to send out a two fold brochure next and finally an invitation size letter for the next. And you may want to send out a catalog or an invoice and a receipt. Can they also match these items up with an envelope? You need to know that your service company has the capability to do everything that you want them to do. You don’t want to have to deal with five different companies in order to get your mailers out to your prospects.
Also ask if they have a relationship with the post office. You don’t want a company who just throws all of your pieces in the mail drawer in the lobby of the USPS building. You want a company that has a good relationship with the postal service and can get answers or help if there is ever a problem. The post office can have great solutions and have gone the extra mile for many. Your service company should know all the rules and regulations of direct mail and the costs involved, but it is essential that they have knowledge of the full job that needs to be done by all parties.
And finally, you want a direct mail service company who is your partner in both business and in growth. You want them to help you with the best solutions and systems. Their equipment should be excellent and they should have the detailed knowledge needed for all of your direct mail campaigns to succeed.
Direct Mail Marketing is one of the best advertising strategies you or your business could utilize to reach customers and prospective clients. It is cost-effective, versatile, highly customizable, quick and easy to set up, reliable and helps you stand out from the typical marketing routines of your competitors. The advantages of direct mail marketing are limitless! Also, the results of your marketing efforts can be measured and tracked easily when using direct mail – no more complicated analytics or time wasted wondering what works and w