When marketers think about successful 1:1 campaigns, they think about factors such as the creative, the offer, the mailing list, and the selection of 1:1 variables. But there is another, even simpler step that you can take to boost response rates.
Provide multiple response mechanisms. Yes, it’s that simple. Give people options. Not everyone wants to respond to your marketing campaign in the same way. One person might feel very comfortable responding by email. Another might prefer to respond by phone. Yet another might prefer to respond to a personalized URL.
Consider your audience. A twenty-something sipping coffee in Starbucks might not respond to a tear-out form, but she might be willing to pick up her phone (which is probably sitting right next to her coffee) and scan a QR Code, taking her to a mobile website. But if you’re marketing to retirees, you might want to include a tear-out form and an 800 number instead, even if you’re primarily hoping they’ll go to the Web.
Testing different response mechanisms is a great opportunity to learn about the different demographic groups in your database, too. One marketer got a surprise when it offered recipients the opportunity to respond to the survey using a personalized URL or by filling out a tear-out card. It thought tear-out cards had become outdated, but it found a surprisingly high percentage of the cards returned, many of them from older recipients who were not comfortable giving out certain information online.
So when you are planning your campaign, include detailed consideration of the response mechanisms you provide. Test different methods with different demographic groups. Once people respond, add this as a variable in your database and capitalize on this knowledge the next time around.
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One of the best uses of your marketing dollars is to protect your existing customer base. You’ve worked hard to earn their loyalty. Now you want to keep it. Consider the benefits of utilizing customer surveys.
Let’s look at an example. A regional grocery store chain was experiencing increased competition from a large national chain and wanted to preserve its most valuable customer relationships. The chain sent two personalized surveys to its top 400 customers: one in the fall and one in the spring.
The first survey included six personalized questions and a letter addressed to the shopper, signed by the store manager of the location they frequented most. In the second, questions were designed to see how well the chain had addressed the issues raised in the first survey. Recipients also received a personalized cover letter from the store manager.
The surveys received a 52% response rate. While specific data on customer retention was not provided, a research study conducted by Rice University and published in Harvard Business Review found that, over the course of a year, customers who received similar customer surveys were twice as likely to continue their relationship with the company than those who did not.
There are no surprises here. Once people have made a purchase from you, they are your customers to lose. Show them that you care what they think, that their opinions are valuable, and you will act on information they share with you. They will reward you with their loyalty.
Why not talk to us about incorporating a customer survey into your next mailing?
 “Sending out a Survey to Customers Can Double Sales,” by Vivek Bhaskaran, www.questionpro.com.
Quick! Name a marketing channel that does the following amazing things:
- Offers a massive 8.5” user interface — double the size of a tablet — and is expandable to 15”.
- Provides crystal clear images that load instantaneously. No lag time!
- Requires no cables or wires.
- Comes pre-installed with thousands of applications.
- Has infinite battery life.
- Can be read from any angle, even upside-down!
What is it? It’s a book!
The ingenious ad campaign comes from IKEA. The home furnishing giant is promoting a YouTube video for what it calls its book book. In the words of the on-screen idea engineer, it is “an idea so simple, it seems familiar.”
In the campaign, the IKEA spokesperson teases the audience with this highly versatile medium that offers benefits that “wow” the audience. Imagine! You can view multiple pages at a time, allow different users to bookmark pages in a simple, intuitive fashion (colored Post-It notes), and despite its power, the battery never, never runs out! It’s a brilliant, entertaining video that every marketer should see.
Best of all, the benefits of this “book book” are real— and they can be applied to direct mailers, postcards, newsletters, and other traditional print marketing, too!
What do you think of this campaign?
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