Some direct mail campaigns are completely ineffective while others are successful. So what’s the difference between an ineffective direct mail piece and an effective one? Most often, it’s the copy. Weak copy doesn’t generate many customer responses, while strong copy will keep the phone ringing and your office busy. The trick is making sure your direct mail has good copy before you send it out.
So how do you know if your copy is strong enough? Read on for key ways to spot effective copy for your next direct marketing project.
Easy to Read
Strong copy is simple, direct and doesn’t keep you guessing. It clearly states what the offer is, and it succinctly communicates why your offer is important to the customer without getting lost in details.
Effective copy should tell a story for the customer. It paints a picture of how this will help customers and make their lives better. The actual use of photos, graphs or other visual aids is also a good way to further illustrate your message.
Tell Them Why
Why should they care about your offer? It’s the copy’s job to tell them. Give customers a reason to take interest and keep reading. For example, an ad that reads, “Take this seminar on how to do your taxes,” is much less likely to grab the attention of readers than an ad that reads, “See how I saved thousands in taxes last year!” Why? The second ad is telling a story and enticing the reader with some valuable information. That makes it more enjoyable to read.
Call the Reader to Action
Don’t just tell them–keep them involved. Strong copy poses questions to the reader, invites them to take action and offers an interactive tone. It’s one of the most crucial elements to keeping readers interested and engaged.
Convey a Sense of Urgency
Often times, if a customer doesn’t act now, they never will. Strong copy should convey a sense of urgency and the need to act fast. Make it clear that the benefit being offered won’t last–it encourages immediate action.
Say What You Want To Say Early
What you say is important. But when you say it can be just as important. A good rule of thumb is to put your main message or offer in the beginning of your mail piece so it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. You want to be sure that readers know what you’re offering up front.
Keep It Concise
The vast majority of people don’t have the time or attention span to read a lengthy marketing material. Don’t waste space with wordy messaging–keep it concise. Bullet points and key takeaways are great ways to get your point across quickly without losing your audience.
The success of your direct mail campaign will be determined in large part by the copy, and you want it to be a success. So don’t just hurry over the copy. Take some time to read it carefully. Is it clear? Is the offer mentioned early and often? Is it interactive and engaging? Does every word serve an important purpose? Will it inspire action? Is it concise? If so, it will help to generate the response you want and expand your company’s reach.
Contact our seasoned and friendly representatives at Ballantine today to discuss options for your company!
I'm the Director of Digital Services and Partner at Ballantine, a family-owned and operated direct mail & digital marketing company based in New Jersey. and started in 1966 by my great uncle!