1. We will show you how.
Through the years, we have learned everything we could about how to be successful with direct mail. And then along came e-mail, the supposed successor and conqueror of direct mail. It never happened. Nor do we think it will. But we have come to realize that e-mail could be a great complement to direct mail. In fact, this type of integrated marketing has turned out to increase ROI dramatically. So as the marketing landscape changes, so must we all. We will show you how to use direct mail principals to create successful e-mail campaigns, hopefully used in combination with plain old direct mail. We have the design "know how" and can create an e-mail with the design specifics to get you noticed.
2. What are you trying to accomplish?
Before you design anything, this is the first question a direct mailer always asks. Are you trying to get orders, vs. prospects? Are you driving people to a retail outlet or building brand awareness? These same questions should be posed with an e-mail campaign but understand that e-mail can be used to either deliver a strong standalone message or merely act as a compliment to your direct mail, depending on your offer. Easy to understand offers, such as getting a free appetizer at a great new restaurant, should be mimicked in the e-mail, but more complex selling propositions should be left for the direct mail portion of the job or as part of a well-designed website. In these cases, it is up to the e-mail to draw interest and then refer the user to either the coming direct mail piece, or to an existing website.
3. General “look and feel”
Direct mail is designed a certain way to showcase a company’s image, create certain feelings and above all, to deliver a message. Things are no different with e-mail, except that you have less space to make your same case and small text is difficult to read on a computer screen. Figure out the most important part of your message and make this the crux of your e-mail. If it is to “come to an event”, “eat at our restaurant”, or a “special on tires”, this should be foremost in your message. Most importantly, your e-mail should look like your direct mailer in terms of colors and graphics. That way, they play off each other. Repetition is important in any marketing message, and by making the e-mail and direct mail similar in terms of “look and feel”, the recipient is likely to link them together in his mind.
4. The Subject Line
The most important part of any e-mail marketing message is the subject line. It’s here that the customer decides to peruse the message or click delete. Think of the subject line as a teaser on an envelope. You are trying to do the same thing here. No lying. No fantastic claims. Though, you definitely want to draw interest without giving everything away. Tell them the best part of your offer, without any of the drawbacks. This is where our professional expertise is welcome - Good subject lines vs Great subject lines.
5. The From Line
Just like the subject line is similar to an envelope teaser line, the “from line” is similar to what you would put in the return name and address area of an envelope. One difference between them is that while direct mail can go without return information, an e-mail must always bear the name of the sender’s company in order to follow CAN-SPAM practices. When using e-mail, the “from line” should always complement the subject line, as they go hand-inhand. Again, using brand name or city recognition is helpful, especially if this was not used in the subject line.
6. Your Offer
The offer goes back to what you are trying to accomplish. If you are trying to mimic your direct mail piece, it should just have the same offer that your direct mail piece has. If your objective is trying to get people to read the mail piece, you should at least hint about the offer. “Look for our mail piece to learn how you can save thousands of dollars…”
7. In Conclusions
Like direct mail, e-mail marketing is not rocket science. The easiest thing to do when you’re creating an e-mail campaign is to ask yourself, assuming you were the target recipient, “Would I read this e-mail?” and “Would I respond to this e-mail?” And finally, “Does this e-mail campaign look similar to the direct mail campaign?” Help us design a marketing piece to create the buzz... bring attention to your company through intriguing offers. This will generally translate into a higher ROI and a happier customer – which is what we all want!