Posts Tagged ‘solutions for direct mail’

When was the last time you had taken advantage of Direct Mail or did you kick it to the curb like a one night stand? Direct Mail is NOT DEAD it’s just not taken in the proper advantage for the best results.

I always observe my mail within my mailbox and the only direct mails from dealerships are for service. Service this and service that but what really turns me off is the unattractiveness & plainness of the mail piece. I am 32 years old, conservative but also am a wife & mother of 2. Why in the world do I just want a mail piece that is black, blue and white?

With this in mind to answer the question above you will see my point from this article. There are many insights on how you can approach Direct Mail and properly market it to your existing or future customers THE RIGHT WAY!

You are an Automotive Dealership with a DMS / CRM that holds all the valuable information you need. Why not take advantage of every piece of data? IT’S THE GOLDEN KEY to your business!  Within that system you have a large range of information to help you take your first step into creating and distributing Direct Mail to the right crowd the right way!

What information does your DMS / CRM hold?

  • Name
  • Address
  • Vehicle Purchased
  • Vehicle Traded In
  • Service Records
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Etc

*If your business doesn’t update your DMS / CRM, Hire someone to help you keep it maintained & data updated. Accurate data helps a business succeed in marketing!

AGE & GENDER are very important to the list above. Why? The reason why is that age ranges & gender can tell a lot about that specific individual. Hip, Conservative, Traditional, Family, Professional, Business Owner & the list goes on. Every individual is different however you can break it down by category.

A woman wouldn’t want black, red and white colors however what would be more appealing to them is more neutral colors & if they were 20-30 years old they would be more apt to view the Direct Mail piece if it had more pinks, yellows or even pastel colors. Men in their 20-30’s would be more apt to view the Direct Mail piece if it was Black, Red, Green & or blue. I think you get my point.

By looking deeply into this data you can go off on searching for a Direct Mail Company. Once you compile a list of companies you can start by asking them these very important questions!

  • How do you retrieve the data? (Always read the fine print!) Make sure your data is secured and will not be distributed to any of your competitors.
  • Do they look at the data we discussed at the beginning of this article? This is a good question to be asking them during the demo of which data is being pulled! If they just talk about the name and address you may want to research a few more companies. Never go with the first one and if it is “TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE”….. Then it’s not the right company to go with!  Lots of false promises. Just drill them with questions and get a list of testimonials so you can reach out to them directly. Not just the testimonials get a good list of about 25. Yes 25 seems like a lot however you want to ensure your marketing dollars goes to making a profit.
  • How do they target the customers? Many Direct Mail Companies just go off the list by Name & Address! Be careful as you are basically throwing money out the door. Anyone can go off a list that has a name & address! During demos you can tell when they research further into the data and go off the actual customer’s data in depth. Targeting is a great way for business success.  I wouldn’t send a Happy Birthday Card to a Funeral…. (RIP DIRECT MAIL) If there is a more upper class neighborhood you would want to stick with something more eloquent. This goes into my next bullet point.
  • Do all the Direct Mail Pieces look the same? Big NO NO! This is where you get shot in the foot and your precious Direct Mail Piece gets tossed in the big bin “THE TRASH CAN”…! Having the same plane old Direct Mail Piece sent out each and every time let alone being sent to the wrong crowd can again be tossed in “THE TRASH CAN”..!
  • Does the Direct Mail have personal written notes? *Companies can take your actual handwriting and print it on the card) Taking this step, as it may cost just a bit more, can show the customers you had taken the time to personally write up a message for them! Handwritten cards & letters seem to have alleviated over the course of years as the wild Internet, Email & Social Media has taken over.  
  • Do they keep track of the returned Direct Mail or do you? If you do please be sure to have someone within your organization to update the addresses within your DMS / CRM data base. It’s no good if you don’t keep it updated.  Reach out to your BDC Department with the list of returns and call the contact numbers to correct the incorrect mailing address.
  • Do they blast the entire list all at once or certain groups at a time? The reason I mention this is I have seen many dealership blast an entire data base with direct mail which flooded the service department causing angered customers & walk outs. Always be sure to do about 50-100 at a time to help alleviate the tension within the service department. Taking this step will help with the Service Manager & their team to ensure the best service visit experience.   Having a great customer service experience helps with your CSI scores!
  • Do they offer you a list of which customers the Direct Mail pieces were sent too? This is always good no matter if you have the data at your fingertips but having a small list of each group they send it too can be very helpful for you as a manager / business owner or your Service Manager. Keeping track of that data can be beneficial to see if the Direct Mail Company is worth the cost.

Finding a company that can work with data to help target your marketing efforts by Direct Mail is a chore however it will be worth every penny spent!

All views & opinions are solely based upon the author only: Jennifer Schrader