The current era of direct marketing has brought upon us not only a wealth of customer-centric data, but numerous channels by which to reach consumers. Direct marketers can choose from direct mail, insert media, telemarketing, direct response television, e-mail, fax and now mobile messaging—can blogging be far behind?
Because of the federal regulations governing telemarketing and fax marketing, these two channels have become problematic for acquisition and retention. At the moment, the most effective multichannel campaigns consist mainly of tandem postal and e-mail marketing.
In the past 18 months, multichannel marketing using e-mail and postal delivery has become an effective acquisition and CRM strategy. The adoption of permission-based e-mail has provided the direct marketing industry with a great opportunity to reinforce purchases, introduce new product launches, distribute
specific promotions and lift internal response rates on customer acquisition campaigns. And because list owners have become much more sophisticated with their e-mail files, marketers now can target consumers in much the same way they have with postal list selection processes.
Plan for Success
Implementing a multichannel campaign can be rewarding, but all too often marketers are overeager to execute, and planning falls by the wayside. Prior to beginning the list selection process, marketers should follow a few simple guidelines:
• Establish the objective of the multichannel campaign. Are you trying to make consumers aware of a product or service, or are you trying to get them to transact?
• Determine the characteristics that are critical for identifying the target customer. Start with less specificity and add additional detail, if necessary, to narrow selection.
• Determine the scheduling of each channel. The best results come from “bookending” your postal effort by sending an e-mail message both before and after the direct mail drops. The e-mail copy and creative should be similar to that used in the direct mail campaign to support the response objective. Schedule the preceding e-mail to drop a day or two before you think the direct mail effort will hit mailboxes, based on the mail class and level of sortation used.