Archive for July, 2013

Just Try a Letter!

When you are looking to get a great response to a print marketing campaign, have you ever considered just sending a direct mail letter? Marketing experts have begun to advocate a return to this simple but effective approach.

Letters have an emotional appeal that doesn’t come from a postcard, a trifold, or even the most beautifully designed brochure. There is something about the personal connection that is made between the sender to the recipient when communicated in natural language in a way that’s easy to understand and relate to.

Letters are inexpensive to print and mail, but they can be profoundly effective when done well.

Here are some thoughts on letter writing and how to do it in very effectively.

1. It has to be great.

An average letter will not do the trick. You need to tell a great story, provide a compelling offer, and do it really, really well. This may mean hiring a copy writer, but it’s worth the effort.

2. Keep it simple.

Sometimes the most simple letters are the most effective. One marketing agency encouraged its client, Ford of Canada, to send a letter saying, “This letter is worth $1,500 to you when you buy or lease a brand new Lincoln.” Over a six-month period, that letter was responsible for the sales of about half the Lincolns in Canada.

3.  Make it as personal as possible.

Be sincere. Use natural language. Affix real stamps on the envelope—or maybe even two. This alone can boost response rates significantly.

This is not about being fancy. It’s about making a real, emotional connection with your audience. Sometimes a fancy, full-color, high-gloss mailer or multi-channel marketing campaign is the right tool for the job. But sometimes a simple, but very well written letter will be just as effective — or more.

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5 Reasons to Care about Infographics

According to IDG’s B2B Content Marketing Trends survey, infographics are the fastest growing content type on the web. Twenty-percent of B2B companies say they are using infographics as part of their content marketing efforts. This is up 150% over year over year. There is no mystery why.

1. Infographics are easy to understand.

Few people have time to sit down and read anymore. However, the busiest people will often look at infographics even when they won’t read anything else.

2. Your customers are visual.

In general, human beings are wired to absorb information faster and more easily visually than by reading text. Infographics offer the power of visual learning.

3. Infographics make data easier to absorb.

Because complex information can be communicated more easily in graphic form, infographics are the perfect way to present large amounts of data.

4. Infographics boost SEO.

According to Google, searches for infographics are up 800% 2011-2012. Adorn your infographics with descriptions, captions, and alt tags and they are very likely to get found.

5. Infographics improve viral sharing.

People love to share information via social media, and infographics make great viral content. If you post them, your customers are likely to Tweet, like, Pin, and otherwise share them.

Although infographics are primarily an online content medium, they benefit your print design, as well. The elements you develop to create great infographics can be used in other print media.  Plus, you may also want your print materials such as direct mail, brochures, and marketing collateral to be influenced by the infographics style — less text, more data, and heavier emphasis on conceptual design elements that communicate information in visual form.

Want to grab attention and help customers retain information better? Think infographics!


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