The Death of Direct Mail and Effective Copywriting
Direct mail is far from dead. Some say there’s even a resurgence of direct mail as we witness online marketers embrace it. This confirms what direct marketers have known for generations: Effective direct mail copywriting generates response.
Looking back through my 2015 columns, there are a few topics that have particularly resonated with readers. Here’s a recap, along with more commentary about the importance of these topics.
"Why Direct Mail Won’t Die." The reason direct mail continues to be alive and well is because it’s the one channel that offers the highest opportunity for strong reading comprehension, which leads to long-term memory. Most online channels are “glance and forget” impressions. Direct mail endures when strong copywriting is combined with precise targeting to a specific persona. Unfortunately, there is a lot of weak direct mail being produced due to weak copy. When it’s weak, it’s a waste of the marketer’s money and annoys consumers. Direct mail copy must stimulate emotion, create a unique selling proposition, in many instances should tell a story, and persuade the reader to give themselves permission to act. You can do all of this using these 12 direct mail mandates.
"3 Charges for Direct Marketing in 2015." The year may be nearly over, but the charges I shared earlier this year are still essential today. The three charges included:
- Cultivate Your Platform. It’s essential you create raving fans. They’re money in the bank.
- How Do You Make Them Feel? Connect at an emotional level. Your prospects will remember how you made them feel before they remember what you sell and what you said about your product or organization.
- Strategically Monetize. You need to look at the cost per customer differently because of the mixture of channels and approaches, such as content marketing, where ROI can’t always be directly attributed.
"8 Seconds to Pounce Using the 3 E’s of Copywriting." Eight seconds. That’s the average attention span of today’s reader, with those precious seconds representing about the time to read only 30 to 40 words of copy. Or about HERE in this paragraph (at 35 words). Those 35 to 40 words should:
As for what’s in store in 2016, in a couple of weeks I’ll share emerging brain research that in my experience reshapes how we approach direct mail copywriting and messaging to reach people more deeply and generate response. Watch for it on Jan. 6.
Reinventing Direct is for the direct marketer seeking guidance in the evolving world of online marketing. Gary Hennerberg is a mind code marketing strategist, based on the template from his new book, "Crack the Customer Mind Code." He is recognized as a leading direct marketing consultant and copywriter. He weaves in how to identify a unique selling proposition to position, or reposition, products and services using online and offline marketing approaches, and copywriting sales techniques. He is sought-after for his integration of direct mail, catalogs, email marketing, websites, content marketing, search marketing, retargeting and more. His identification of USPs and copywriting for clients has resulted in sales increases of 15 percent, 35 percent, and even as high as 60 percent. Today he integrates both online and offline media strategies, and proven copywriting techniques, to get clients results. Email him or follow Gary on LinkedIn. Co-authoring this blog is Perry Alexander of ACM Initiatives. Follow Perry on LinkedIn.