Marketing Rocket Science

    Targeting is all about landing your marketing message exactly where you intended to go, even if it’s from hundreds of miles away. If you hit the bulls-eye, you’ve delivered the right message to the right person at the right time, and you’ll probably land a sale. It’s the marketing equivalent of Space X’s recent landing of a rocket on a barge floating at sea. Pretty impressive huh?

    We’ll tell you right now, Space X didn’t just do that on a whim. It took a thoughtful approach and some fairly serious planning, and before that planning was complete there was some fairly expensive trial and error. The same goes for you, only with careful planning, you can avoid the costly mistakes that don’t bring in the right customers. If you want your direct mail postcards to land on all the right barges, as it were, you’re going to need to look at the data. Get it right, and you’ve injected rocket-fuel into your ROI.

    Here is the data you’ll want to consider when targeting your postcard marketing:

    Who they are? Let’s look at your demographics. This is the first step you’ll want to take in narrowing down your audience by age, gender, marital status, economic status, level of education, income level, and employment. This will help you cut down the entire market of potential buyers to more manageable segment to whom you can address a more personalized message. If you select only women, for example, you can use all-feminine pronouns throughout your postcards. If you’re not sure where to start, try to come up with your most “typical” customer and filter based on that.

    What do they value? These are what are called psychographics factors. Whereas demographics are more about someone’s physical state, psychographics delve into their belief systems, their values, and take into account preferences like hobbies, interests, and dislikes. You’ll want to factor this part heavily into how you phrase your messages so that you’re speaking in your audiences’ language. Avoid controversy by erring on the side of respecting all beliefs equally in your marketing.

    How they act? Behavioral segmentation is about whether people are likely to respond to your marketing or not. Luckily for direct mail, it has broad acceptance among all demographics, but what sorts of calls to action are people likely to respond best to? People in large cities are more likely to prefer a website they can visit while folks from the Midwest typically appreciate talking to someone on the phone. And if you’re using QR codes, make sure that it’s with a younger demographic.

    Where they live? Values, neighborhood, and weather all play a big part in people’s responsiveness to marketing. Travel offers featuring bright and sunny beaches are all the brighter when sent to cold places at cold times. Or if a community is particularly proud of its civic engagement, remember to list your local affiliations like the chamber of commerce or Rotary on your postcard.

    Past business relationship? This is of course key: have they bought from you before? If you’re in doubt, be sure to use ambiguous language that doesn’t presume that they don’t know you, as this may hurt the brand familiarity that you’ve already built up. If you know for certain that you’re targeting customers, talk to them like old friends.

    Great, that’s a mountain of data. How can you quickly and easily sort through all of this to get your postcards to the right people?

    Using our web-to-print platform, target your ideal customer personas at the click of a button. Simply choose to between these four options:

    Map My Mail: Draw an area on Google Maps using tax assessor data.
    Demographic Search: Choose from hundreds of data choices and in-depth property information.
    Psychographic Search (Powered by Nielsen PRIZM): Understand your customer at a deeper level by choosing pre-selected personas who match your ideal customer.
    Upload your own list!

    Once you’ve got your list and you’ve designed your mailing, it’s blast-off for your marketing campaign.

    Get started today by calling us at 1-877-222-6010 or printing online to safely land more new customers today!

      Wouldn’t it be nice if your customers took care of you for once?

      Current customers are the bread and butter of any small business. They’re your lifeblood, your recurring revenue, and you’ve spent years acquiring, delighting, and keeping them. And after all of your hard work, isn’t it about time they took care of you too?

      You know, there’s a lot more to your relationship with them than meets the eye.

      For whatever value you’re getting from each customer, it’s probably only a small fraction of their full wallet-share (That’s the total amount of money that they spend on goods like yours). Let us elaborate.

      Let’s say that you’re a general grocer. If your average consumer spends $100 with you each month, but US Census data shows that the average household spends $281, you only have about 1/3 of their wallet-share. What gives? Where is the rest of that money going? Probably to the specialty grocer down the street carrying the Iberian pork, or that new Juice shop promoting cleanses. Your customers have spread their spending across many providers in order to find what they want and like.

      So you mean they’re going to spend that money anyway?

      Yep. The question now becomes this: Instead of spending 7 times more to acquire new customers, isn’t it a great use of your time to run marketing campaigns to your current ones to garner more wallet-share? Of course it is, and here’s how it’s done!

      Marketing to your current customers

      Whether you’ve filled a gap in your offerings or you’re simply trying to get people to realize the breadth of what you already have, you want to advertise in a way that feels authentic. Whereas emails can feel cheap and get lost among the clutter, consumers and businesses alike actually prefer and respond better to postcard marketing which denotes a certain quality by the nature of the fact that it had to be printed and sent with intention. It’s an offer they can touch, and it doesn’t disappear when they put their phone down.

      Here are the 6 steps to running a highly successful current customer postcard campaign:

      1. Figure out who you’re going to target. The first step is to determine who that customer segment that you want to go after is. Maybe it’s all of your customers, or maybe it’s a small subset. Filter all of this information into a spreadsheet in this format.
      1. Design the offer: Visit ProspectsPLUS’s web-to-print platform to get started and select among preset designs.  Remember that you’re speaking to people who already know and trust you. This is an opportunity to leverage that relationship and write in a colloquial and personal manner. Doing the opposite could cost you big points. I know that every time Comcast sends me another offer for faster internet addressed to “Dear occupant” even though I already use them, I etch another mark on the wall of my deep dislike of them. Don’t be Comcast!

      Address your customers by name, acknowledge your existing relationship, and include an offer that will allow you to track the success of your campaign. Maybe that’s a URL, maybe it’s a discount code, or maybe you simply ask them to bring it in with them to the store!

      1. Upload customer list. If you’re having trouble at this stage coming up with enough customer addresses, you can achieve practically the same thing through neighborhood targeting wherein you simply select the area around your business using Google Maps.
      1. Set it for multiple sends: While it takes on average 7 marketing touches for someone to become aware of your business name, it may take the same amount to get them to become aware of a new product offering. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt and assume that you’ve done a great job on branding already and set this campaign for no less than 3 touches over the next month.
      1. Review and send. Have you dotted your “t’s” and crossed your “i’s”? Well go back and fix that! Once everything is good to go, set those postcards and let your marketing partner do the rest!
      1. Track responses and ROI: You can log back into your ProspectsPLUS account at any time to review the deliveries in real-time thanks to our USPS integration. You can measure that against the number of offers that are redeemed to figure out your overall success.

      Customer success campaigns are downright easy, aren’t they? There’s no dreaming up new messaging to tackle new and unknown markets, there’s just spreading awareness among the current patrons that you already understand so well. Done correctly, your customer postcard marketing campaigns will save you boatloads of money and help you earn a greater wallet-share of your customers for lower marketing costs!

      If you haven’t started your customer postcard campaign yet what are you waiting for?

      Have any questions about how this works? Never hesitate to pick up the phone and talk to a real person at 1-877-222-6010!

      Or if you think your customer campaign requires a little more support, Opportunity Knocks is a full-service marketing agency and partner of ProspectsPLUS who can set up and run the entire thing for you!

        Who is your customer…really?

        That’s the question that Nielsen’s PRIZM poses to us, and we’ll pass it along to you like a hot potato. Do you really know them or how to reach them? That’s what Nielsen is here to solve.

        PRIZM sort of sounds like a weapon of mass destruction from a James Bond film, and that’s basically what it is for your marketing: A game-changing tool of mass- effectiveness. It calls itself “the leading lifestyle segmentation system” and that term “lifestyle” is key because beyond knowing the basics about where your customers live, it gathers the other hidden consumer data that usually goes unnoticed, like lifestyle preferences.

        Let’s take for example two demographically identical mothers. Both live in two-bedroom homes in the same neighborhoods with the exact same income. One could possess a love of soap operas and romance novels while the other could be enthralled with WW2 military history. You should market to them differently, we don’t need big data to tell you that, but how do you figure out those preferences so that you can do so?

        Big data solves big problems

        That’s where Nielsen’s PRIZM becomes the answer. After all, every postcard that you send that is personalized for the Days of Our Lives-loving mother is completely wasted upon the fan of historian EB Sledge, and vice versa. This is the reason that your cost-per-lead-acquisitions are so high and you can watch postcards going out but no responses coming back in. Nielsen’s PRISM solves this by collecting psychographic data which includes beliefs, interests, dislikes, and lifestyles, and sharpens your list up to a very fine point.

        Okay that’s pretty powerful, but is it easy to use?

        Not only do you have nearly perfectly targeted data, but they make it incredibly easy to use it in your targeted postcard campaigns. Through ProspectsPLUS’s web-to-print postcard marketing system you can use Nielsen PRIZM to select from 66 demographically and behaviorally distinct types of consumers, including factors like:

        • Socioeconomic rank (Are they bohemian or big sky families?)
        • Sports (Do they prefer skiing or golf?)
        • Media (Do they prefer museums over fantasy football?)
        • Shopping (Are they more likely to buy from Nordstrom or Amazon?)
        • Apparel choices (Do they buy from Rag and Bone or K-mart?)
        • Plus, Income, Product usage, Education, Occupation,Home value, Leisure time preferences, Life stage …

        And the list goes on.

        There’s an infinite amount of data, and we’re only just getting started.

        Based on your business goals, Nielsen and ProspectsPLUS! can help you answer these questions:

        • Who are my best customers?
        • What are my best customers like?
        • Where can I find them?
        • How should I reach them?

        If it all seems too good to be true, we’re right there with you. Before we were business partners with Nielsen PRIZM we were just customers, but it seemed like an invaluable service to extend to our clients. We want you to get highly personalized too because it’s such a critical element of successful modern marketing.

        This ability to get hyper-targeted is increasingly key to winning sales. As technology advances in the digital world and websites personalize themselves to the user, 73% of people have already been trained to prefer doing business with brands that can address them by name and understand their interests. They also look for the same personalization in offline direct-mail marketing, where we help you keep pace by getting laser-targeted on specific customers within specific households and addressing them all by name, beliefs, and behaviors.

        So, we’ll repeat the question we started with: Who is your customer, really?

        Nielsen’s PRISM knows. And you can use it in one of your postcard marketing campaigns today. They take just fifteen minutes to set up using one our best-practice designs and we have a full staff ready to answer your questions if you pick up the phone and just give us a call at 1-877-222-6010!

        Need a hand in putting it all together?

        Marketing isn’t everyone’s forte, but we’re here to make it as easy as counting to three. Opportunity Knocks is a full service agency who can get all of your ProspectsPLUS! postcard campaigns set up quickly and help you with your overall strategy. Give them a call at 866-319-7109 today!

           

          Who’s afraid of that big bad list?

          Unless you want your marketing to have a supernaturally high budget, stop marketing to ghosts! Every small business is working with a list, either one they’ve built-up organically, purchased, or borrowed, and they’re always in a state of disrepair, full of non-existent people.

          Like an old house that doesn’t get maintained, these lists are expiring from the moment they’re created because consumers move, marry, and change their names, and businesses do the same through relocations, mergers, and acquisitions. If you’re not maintaining proper hygiene for your direct mail list, you’re sending postcards to people who aren’t there, and what’s more wasteful than that?

          Quite simply, your marketing budget can’t take it. Hence, the need for proper list hygiene.

          There are several ways to go about maintaining your list hygiene: do it yourself or call in a partner. Even if you’ve already chosen to have a partner handle it for you (a great choice, we must say), it’s still highly instructive to appreciate what goes into doing it yourself.

          Here’s the process of maintaining a clean list for postcard marketing:

          Use a program: Microsoft Excel will do just fine, but 6 out of 10 small businesses out there are still using something else, from notepads to sticky-notes and whiteboards. It’s time to get organized and get it in one place, and Excel works best because it’s free and commonplace, unless of course you have some software like a CRM.

          Basic data hygiene: When’s the last time you went through your list? This is the “sweeping the porch” portion of hygiene, which involves manually scrolling through to clean up misspells, properly labeling your columns, and de-duplicating people who show up more than once.

          Export only the fields necessary: Your list needs to be speaking the same language as the system you’re uploading it to, and the most common is a .CSV file (taken from Excel). Here’s the proper list format that we use here at ProspectsPLUS!.

          Manage the un-delivered rate: It’s important to know which postcards arrived and which didn’t so that you can update your list. If you’re sending these on your own through the USPS, the price of tracking each can run you a hefty bill. Some companies provide this tracking through their portal!

          Monitor the do-not-mail list: The FCC cares about unwanted direct mail just the same as they do phone calls and email, and they manage it through the Direct Marketing Association. As a business, you’re responsible for not sending to people on this list and while violation fines vary by state, they can run up to $16,000 per incident! (If you use direct mail marketing partner like ProspectsPLUS!, they’ll take on this responsibility)

          If you get stuck, call for help! The last thing you want to do in list hygiene is go it alone, and you can always give our experts a call at 1-877-222-6010 to make sure you’re handling it correctly!

          And speaking of getting help…

          Remember earlier when we hinted that there was 1 secret tool that will do it all for you?

          That secret tool is a digitally-powered postcard marketing partner like ProspectsPLUS!

          With our cutting-edge integrated data partners like Nielsen PRIZM we keep a fully up-to-date list of all of the consumers and businesses that you consider prospects. Our software is fully CASS Certified (Coding Accuracy Support System) to ensure that addresses are printed correctly, and uses NCOA (National Change of Address) technology to make sure that your recipient still lives or works where you’re mailing them.

          What does all of this mean? That instead of doing any of the list hygiene above, you can simply trust us to ensure near complete data accuracy and that as a result, we can guarantee 92% delivery success on your mailings. You’d have to make list hygiene your full time job to come even close to that on your own, and we provide 100% mail tracking on all of the deliveries to boot!

          Are you curious what that a guaranteed hygienic list looks like?

          Jump into our web-to-print postcard marketing platform and see for yourself!

          Just follow our guide to designing the perfect postcard and then select from uploading your own, selecting your ideal customer type, or drawing a mail-to zone on a Google map!

          It’s that simple, and take it from there.

          Any questions? Call our experts today at 1-877-222-6010 to start bringing in more living, breathing, customers!

            Messaging makes or breaks your postcard campaigns

            Your writing style is extremely important in your marketing. It’s how your customers and potential clients perceive you, how authoritative they think you are, and whether they trust you enough to pick up the phone and buy from you!

            And yet despite this, many small business owners totally write-it-in for their postcard campaigns (excuse the pun, but on this one we had to). We know, because we watch them go out every week. They’re simply going with the first draft of whatever they jotted down and not thinking about whether their message is actually effective.

            Let’s take a look together at what really effective messaging looks like. 

            Examine these two advertisements. As a customer, what do you notice?

            At Janet’s Landscaping, we use top of the line mowers and edgers. 

            You will love how lush your lawn looks, only with Janet’s Landscaping.

            Pretty obvious which is more appealing, right? The second one jumps right to what I want as a customer, which is a beautiful lawn. The first one on the other hand presumes that I know that mowers and edgers equate to a good lawn, but it takes mental effort. Don’t make your customer do work, come right out and say it in their terms!

            So now, here’s the message that nobody likes to hear.

            You’re out there advertising like the first one!

            We’re all guilty of a little self-centeredness. It’s only natural, after all, we know what we ourselves like and how we like to say it! However, if you’re not speaking in terms of what your customers want to hear, people are throwing away your postcards before they get to the good stuff and dragging down your response rate and ROI.

            And we won’t stand for that! Your success is our success, and we’re in this together. So without further adieu … 

            Here are our top 6 tips to help you speak in your audiences’ language:
            1. Know your audience. Get used to speaking in terms of the value propositions for each of your buyer personas. Maybe John and Jane newlywed are most interested in a clean yard where their kids won’t get hurt, whereas Sally apartment complex owner expects her lawn to help attract new renters. The same value proposition wouldn’t work for both, so make sure you’re got the right one!
            1. Use the acronym WIIFM: Or, “What’s in it for me.” It’s what your customer thinks when they read your offer. Every time you write something, ask yourself what’s in it for your customer and if it doesn’t clearly tie back to a tangible benefit like more revenue or saved time, keep trying.
            1. Change your writing style to fit the situation:  
            • For selling to households, make your postcards bright and colorful and folksy sounding! Take the tone of being a neighbor and reference things that only a local would know.
            • When your services are big life decisions, like accounting, insurance, and investment, sound solid, authoritative, and reliable.
            • For marketing to local businesses, get to the point! They’re busy and if they don’t see the value proposition in the first three-seconds, you’ve lost them.
            • For triggered campaigns on specific events like birthdays or moving into a new house, share in their enthusiasm!
            1. Use analogies: Using analogies is like building a suspension bridge between the value proposition of your message and your audiences’ front door. See what I did there? Analogies allow you to use mental shortcuts to help customers understand more quickly and in less words. For example, “Great landscaping is like a complete makeover for your home!”
            1. Use powerful descriptors. I recently followed my wife into a makeup store called Sephora and I was blown away by the word choice in there. There are thousands of products and each of them have only a few words to capture your attention, so they do a breathtaking job: Vivid. Effortless. Luminous. Purifying. Glowing. Clay. Do these jump out at you or what? Use them, and here’s a list of 100 powerful adjectives to get you started.
            1. Once you’ve finished your first draft, start over. Why? Because as you write your ideas will change and your message will improve. Whenever we write headlines for these articles we write no less than six and each one improves upon the last, until we have something that’s truly attention grabbing.

            That wasn’t so hard, was it? Six simple tips that you can follow to start speaking in terms of what your customers care about so that your postcards really hit home.

            Ready to turn your new panache for writing into revenue?

            While you might not feel like the next Stephen King, ready to churn out a novel worth of postcards, don’t worry! We can help with your postcard marketing writing if you just give our friendly folks a call at 1-877-222-6010. Together, we’ll use writing to help you reap huge returns!

              Better get checked … for banner blindness?

              What would you say if I told you that 86% of the people reading this today suffer from “banner blindness?” Wait! Before you run to the phone to text your doctor (that’s a thing now), or go to WebMD, understand that this is actually good for you! It’s your body’s natural defense against a torrential hurricane of annoying online advertising that’s become so loud that almost nobody is listening anymore.

              Banner blindness is when people can’t recall the last advertisement they saw. Research by Adotas confirmed that just about everybody exhibits it, and that it’s linked to the fact that there are too many bad ads out there. Shysters shilling weight loss supplements and adult dating sites have inadvertently trained us as a society to completely ignore them.

              This is especially bad news for those well-intentioned advertisers out there because now nobody is being heard. And yet, paradoxically, the industry keeps growing. Why? Because advertisers themselves aren’t paying enough attention! The whole industry is practically driving blind. Despite study after study confirming that online advertising is among the lowest performing ways to garner new customer eyeballs, the industry is slated to grow by 15.4% this year.

              So before you go doubling down on your online advertising, consider these alarming statistics:
              • 56% of all of the digital ads out there are never seen by a human! Source: AdAge
              • Standard banner ads are only clicked on by 1.2 people out of every 1000. Source: eMarketer

              That’s all pretty bleak, and when you consider that only 1-2% of people who actually click on that banner actually end up making a purchase, making sales this way is like getting only 5 customers out of an entire football stadium of prospects.

              If not digital ads, what then?

              At ProspectsPLUS, we say fall back on what you know, and trust a mixture of your instincts and data. There are thousands of tech companies prowling out there promising magic bullets while looking for creative ways to cut into SMB profits and at the end of the day, that’s not how businesses grow. Banner and digital ads do have their place but only as a supplement to doing business as you always have: meeting and greeting strangers, spreading the word, and leaning on the single most reliably effective target marketing channel: direct mail.

              Direct mail is like that first car of yours…the one you were so proud to own but which you left behind when you moved away. And now, years later, when you come back and whip the dustcover off of it and the engine roars to life, you’re enthralled with the sleek design and the unparalleled quality. You realize that nowadays, they just don’t make them like they used to.

              And we mean that. Postcard Marketing isn’t some plastic-lined import. It’s a 1969 Mustang for your marketing.

              Postcard marketing delivers these results:
              • 7% response rate from households, 30x higher than banner ads! Source: DMA Response
              • 15-17% ROI on average. Source: DMA Response
              So now you have to ask yourself, what’s it going to be: Direct responses or fighting against banner blindness?

              ProspectsPLUS! has been in the business for over 20 years, and we aren’t going anywhere. Pick up the phone today and call us at 1-877-222-6010 or try our print-to-web guided process to get your next truly genuine postcard marketing campaign going!

              And if you need those campaigns but want an expert to set them up, Opportunity Knocks can get it all done for you in flash! They’re a sister company to PropsectsPLUS! who specialize in white-glove direct mail marketing.

                Brand image and brand identity: don’t they mean the same thing?

                There’s actually a pretty big difference between the two and understanding that difference can help you steer your business in the right direction. You’ll be able to employ more effective marketing techniques and you’ll net more sales because people will know and trust you. Neglecting the difference on the other hand can lead to a catastrophic image problem than can undercut all of your hard work.

                What’s the key difference?

                We’ll start with brand identity. This is how a company wants to be perceived. It’s largely internal, with a business owner, a marketer, or a marketing agency (or maybe all three) coming up with the logo, the tagline, the jingle, the value proposition, and the general aesthetic for the company. Brand image on the other hand is largely external and is how consumers perceive the company, which can be quite different. Take Walmart, for example.

                Walmart’s brand identity, as dreamed up by marketers: save money, live better, community engagement

                Walmart’s brand image, as perceived by the public: minimum wage, putting mom and pop shops out of business, child labor

                Not so good, huh? When identity and image don’t align you have an image problem and people are far less likely to trust you. And whereas Walmart does indeed do an incredible job of donating money to charity and encouraging corporate responsibility through its value chain, people interpret those actions through the filter of its negative image and accuse it of using these donations in manipulative ways. So you see how a negative image can become a very deep hole to climb out of, and why you should work so hard to avoid it?

                How can you ensure that you align your brand identity and image?

                It all comes down to close communications with your customers. Communication is of course a two-way street that requires both talking and listening. This can become an incredibly difficult task for large enterprises (just think about how often AT&T or Verizon ask for your feedback in surveys) but for small businesses, it’s both practical and possible to elicit and act upon feedback.

                Customers’ positive or negative perceptions of you start to develop at the individual level. When they don’t find what they’re looking for in your grocery store, for example, they’ll start to think of you as “that place that never has Brussel sprouts.” Or when they’re delighted by a clerk’s recipe recommendation (try baking them honey), they’ll conversely think of you as “that super helpful grocery store.” When a consumers shares their feelings with others, that perception starts to snowball into a public one. It’s thus important to have channels for eliciting this feedback constantly, whether it’s anonymous surveys, asking customers about their experience, or using secret shoppers. By knowing how people feel, you can then use your marketing to steer your brand identity.

                Use marketing to steer the ship 

                If your brand is becoming known for something good, lean into this phenomena. If people like your fresh produce, use that in your next postcard marketing campaign! Or if you’re starting be known for long lines, fix the problem and start a marketing campaign announcing that it’s been fixed! Through close communication, both listening and responding, you can steer your brand identity and image to the same place and be known as a trustworthy business.

                Have something on your mind that you need to get out?

                If you’re reading this thinking, “oh man, I totally need to communicate something to my customers!” you need not wait. With our online web-to-print platform you can get a postcard marketing campaign up and running in under thirty minutes. Give us a call at 877-222-6010 and we’ll see how we can get your brand image back on track today!

                If you need a little extra help…

                It never hurts to have an extra set of eyes on your project, especially when it’s as important as deciding how to portray yourself as a brand. You can always lean on Opportunity Knocks, a full service marketing agency with decades of experience helping people align their brand identity and image so you get actual response. Talk to a person directly at 866-319-7109.

                   

                  How can postcards help me specifically?

                  Postcards are a great way to capture new customers.  Period.  Yet time and time again we’re asked the question, how are other people in my industry utilizing this? How can I be more strategic with my postcard marketing? Well here you are, what follows is our answer!

                  To understand all of the possible use cases (and to dream up some of your own), let’s understand a little bit about the technology behind our postcard marketing system. It’s personalized, digital, and fully automated, which helps you in these ways: 

                  • Personalized: We hold a deep database of customer data along with partners like Accudata and Nielsen Prizm which allows us to know virtually everything about your consumer. You can select your prospects by demographic or psychographic profiles, or to simply draw an area around a neighborhood in Google Maps to target. When the postcards go out, they’ll address each of those people by first name!
                  • Digitally powered: Most people are still familiar with the old offset printing technologies that required tons of environmentally harmful ink and large order minimums. Those days are gone, and the digital printers that ProspectsPLUS! uses allow us to sustainably print high resolution postcards in batches as small as one (lonely) postcard. This makes it possible to do advanced trigger campaigns where we can send one-off postcards for appointment reminders or people’s birthdays, or massive Market Dominator blasts to tens of thousands of recipients.
                  • Fully automated: In this era of marketing automation the whole point is to save you time, otherwise why would you pay us to do it? We allow you to set up several campaigns at once from our online web-to-print platform and schedule them so that marketing becomes a once a month activity, not a daily hair-pulling hassle.

                  Whew, we’re done. With that foundation, here’s how our customers are leveraging this technology in their particular industries: 

                  • Dental: Dentists are highly local businesses and thus MapMyMail allows them to target specific neighborhoods. They also rely heavily on appointment reminder postcards to those infrequent cleanings and check-ups.
                  • Beauty and wellness: Hair and nail care is another industry where visits are infrequent, and appointment reminders are extremely helpful. And for prospecting, they like to use psychographic profiles to target women and men who are likely to spend extra on hair care products.
                  • Financial planning: People dread dealing with their finances and so it’s no surprise that missed appointments are a major reason financial planners use appointment reminder postcards. They can also easily prospect in their local area for families with sizable assets and young kids destined for college.
                  • Insurance: This is one industry where you can never have too many leads so they are heavy on the prospecting and like to target their messages based on financial factors like age, income, property ownership, and marriage status, and personalize those postcards images to give them a very local feel.
                  • Vision/Optometry: Appointment reminders are the #1 use case here to keep people showing up to those annual check-ups. Postcards are also a great way to do mass mailings to the surrounding areas to announce new openings and offerings.
                  • Retail: Research shows that new homeowners spend on average $7,000+ upon moving to a new area, and a New Mover Campaign can be set to target these folks when then arrive within a certain perimeter of retail stores.
                  • Real estate: Property showcasing postcards, brochures, and business cards are staples for real estate agents to attract new leads. They combine visually appealing pictures with highly targeted and personalized mailings to achieve a higher ROI.
                  • Landscaping/Construction: Door hangers are the perfect complement to postcard mailings which they target at specific neighborhoods. This allows landscapers to both use pictures of completed jobs in their marketing and to keep their new job sites tightly grouped for efficiency.

                  This list is always growing and we’d love to hear from you about what’s working in your industry! Every day we collect more and more success stories about how direct-mail which is personalized, digital, and automated is making businesses money while they sleep!

                  With so many options, where do you start? 

                  Whatever your industry, it couldn’t hurt to chat with a postcard marketing specialist to hear more about how we can help you market your business. Give us a call today at 877-222-6010 to chat with someone directly or visit our postcard marketing platform to jump right in.

                  And if you need an extra hand, you can trust Opportunity Knocks Marketing to consult, design, and deploy the perfect industry-specific postcard marketing campaign for you. They’re a sister company to ProspectsPLUS! and you can reach them right now at 866-319-7109!

                    In many ways, your customer base can be a bit of a leaky bucket. Sure, some clients will grow over time and make up a sizable part of your business, but many will also churn out, for various reasons. Individuals move and businesses go bankrupt. All of these scenarios leave you with a customer pool that’s slowly losing water! To keep it topped up, you’re going to have to find a good way to fill it with new customers.

                    The answer of course is prospecting!

                    This word may make you shudder, probably because the last time you did it, it ended up being a lot more work than you signed up for. Especially if you did it through an out of touch, old-school postcard and direct mail vendor (direct mail of course achieves the highest returns and response rates). We’re willing to bet that these were the steps you had to go through:

                    1. Identify your target market
                    2. Come up with a message
                    3. Design marketing materials
                    4. Get the consumers’ contact information
                    5. Enlist a vendor to print and send them
                    6. Track the deliveries and responses, and then do it all over again

                    If we made it into a flowchart with everything you have to do highlighted in red, we’d get this;

                    PP Prospecting for new customers Figure A

                    Enough work for you? The good news is that you don’t have to ever take it all on again! Technology has come a long way to make your life easier and if this time around you choose a direct mail marketing partner with digital printing technology, here’s what it looks like:

                    PP Prospecting for new customers Figure B

                    Seem like a vast improvement? We agree, it suddenly seems not only manageable, but easy. Let’s explore how we do it.

                    The new school of direct mail marketing

                    When you sign up for the services of a digitally-enabled postcard marketing partner like ProspectsPLUS! they already have a database with all of your prospects, their contact information, well designed postcard templates, a tight handoff with the USPS, and software to track each delivery. In essence, all you need to know for your prospecting these days is:

                    1. Your target audience (choose from a list)
                    2. Your messaging
                    3. Click send, wait for results!

                    Have you been timing us? Not even thirty minutes have elapsed and we have your next month of campaigns targeted, designed, and queued to go out to people who are eager to hear them. And once you find one that you like and works for you, we can set it on repeat so that prospecting becomes something that happens while you sleep!

                    Already have an audience and a message in mind?

                    ProspectsPLUS! has the database of all of your potential customers and all you need to do to start landing more clients is give us a call at 877-222-6010 or access our online web-to-print platform today!

                    Need a little help writing that first marketing message?

                    If that’s your barrier, or you just don’t have the time and would like someone to run it all for you, get in touch with Opportunity Knocks Marketing. They’re a full service marketing agency with a plug-and-play plan to pour gallons upon gallons back into that leaky bucket of customers for you!

                       

                      What can we learn from The Art of War?

                      Is there really an art to postcard marketing? Of course! There’s an art to practically everything, and as a general of the ancient Chinese army of Wu, Sun Tzu proved to be one of history’s greatest chroniclers of these universal truths. In his translated verses we can still draw upon the crystallized advice of great historical leaders and here today we’ll use this wisdom to help you maneuver your postcard marketing campaigns to victory!

                      How might we compare marketing to war? Well first off, there are undeniable parallels, and in business across the globe we still eulogize our more warrior-like past with phrases like “uphill battle, cut-throat, long-shot, and crushing the competition.” It’s all about winning against an opponent. And while our society is much more peaceful than any before it, business can still be viewed like a tactical game of chess.

                      It is in this light that we can view our marketing as a struggle to win more customers than the other guys! At ProspectsPLUS! we’re strongly against calling your competitors (or heaven forbid, your customers) “the enemy” but if you treat them with respect like a sportsman who is trying to win customers away from you, you can use these strategies to be the more cunning player!

                      So it’s time to put on our general’s caps, roll out the maps, and learn from ancient Chinese Art of War: 
                      1. Supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting. 

                      Translation: The best marketing tactics will be met with no resistance. That is to say, you should be effectively using psychology in your postcard marketing. Instead of beating people over the head with discount offers and practically begging them to walk through your doors, you can accomplish the same thing with less effort by applying tactics like the contrast principle or social proof. Together these strategies imply to your prospects that they’re getting a great deal and hundreds of other people feel the same way, allowing you to sidestep their initial skepticism and jump straight into a sale.

                      1. When you surround the enemy’s army, leave an outlet free. 

                      Translation: The idea here is that if you corner your opponent and give them absolutely no escape, they’ll fight like a cornered tiger, which is bad news for you. If you instead leave them one obvious route for their escape, they’ll go exactly where you want them to. The marketing implications are obvious, aren’t they? Lead your prospects to the sale by giving them an out! Avoid outright criticizing their current practices because if they think you’re simply calling them dumb for not buying your insurance policy, let’s say, they’ll get offended and disagree. Instead, give them the benefit of the doubt with softening statements like “You probably already knew that you could risk loosing everything if you don’t have insurance.” It will still corner them with the right information, but will leave them with only path to escape: agreement!

                      1. There are not more than five musical notes, yet the combinations of these give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard.

                      Translation: Repurpose your old content! While you music buffs may point out that modern music theory recognizes twelve notes, the advice is the same: through combination and recombination, there’s no limit to what you can create from what you already have today. Oftentimes in postcard marketing business owners will get stuck feeling like they’re all out of new ideas but the truth is that with whatever they have at hand, there are limitless combinations! They can break down white papers into blogs, social media posts, flyers, slogans, testimonials, and more! There are endless melodies you can compose to design the perfect postcard.

                      1. Do not repeat tactics which have gained you one victory, but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances.

                      Translation: Switch up what you’re doing for marketing! If people see the same postcard arriving month after month, they’ll start to tune out its message. You can get creative and with very little effort by simply customizing those campaigns based on seasons or holidays, supplement them with door hangers, or even trigger them based on major life events like moving to a new area or opening a new office. This allows your tactics to mimic the mighty streams that Sun Tzu so admired, flowing around obstacles and adapting to the unique circumstances of the people you’re marketing to.

                       

                      And there you have it! These go much deeper than just being practical advice on maneuvering armies and rallying troops: they’re universal lessons in how to allocate your time and resources to achieve victory, no matter the arena. If you follow even a few of the four timeless principles you’ll see a sharp uptick in the effectiveness of your postcard marketing campaigns.

                      So, general, what’s stopping your troops from marching?

                      Call ProspectsPLUS! at 877-222-6010 to get your next postcard marketing campaign out today!

                      And if you need help, the best campaign advisor you can have in your camp is Opportunity Knocks Marketing, a full service agency who can get it all done in a flash for you!