Monthly Archives: February 2012
Direct Mail Marketing Vs. Email Marketing
At some point, every business reaches that marketing fork-in-the-road: Direct mail marketing or email marketing? Each path has its pros and its cons. Each has been accused of becoming obsolete in the face of some greater marketing power, and each has alternatively been praised as the best, most effective form of marketing. With so many polarized opinions out there, it can be difficult to decide which marketing path your business will follow. Here is a list comparing the benefits and downsides of direct mail marketing and email marketing.
First off, email marketing is less expensive per record than direct mail. The amount of email addresses in a broadcast is often times in the millions so the amount of people you are able to reach in a single campaign is immense. Your expenses will come primarily from designing your email campaign creative, from finding valid email addresses to target and, if you choose, from finding a company to broadcast your email creative for you. Secondly, email is fast; you can get your message out to people in a matter of seconds. This also makes email a great medium for testing your campaigns before launch. Third, and related, is the fact that email marketing gives your leads the opportunity for immediate action. If you offer a special promotion, your email readers will be able to take advantage of that promotion almost instantaneously.
On the downside, many argue that people are less receptive to email because they are constantly overloaded with spam. Your emails could even get classified as spam themselves, so most companies opt to use an email marketing company to conduct the blast on their behalf – these companies are able to get through the spam blocks so that your message is read. Your email marketing campaigns will also have to be short; internet users often have a very limited attention span, which means if your email doesn’t catch their attention right away, it probably won’t have much impact.
Direct Mail Marketing:
On the upside, studies have shown that people are much more receptive to direct mail marketing; in fact, one study by Epsilon Targeting shows that the majority of Americans prefer receiving direct mail about offers or products over receiving emails. This may be due to the fact that having something physical in their hands is more tangible than something they see on their computer screen. Second, direct mail marketing gives you more leeway in terms of space. Consumers are much more likely to read an entire letter delivered by mail than one delivered by email. This means that your direct mail marketing campaigns can be more subtle and more detailed than those delivered by email. Third, as more companies try the email marketing route, there is more space in the mailbox, or less competition, for your direct mail piece. Fewer pieces of mail means a higher chance that your direct mail piece will be read.
The main downside to direct mail marketing is that it can be expensive if you don’t target your audience properly, although this can be avoided by purchasing a targeted mailing list. Direct mail marketing also requires more time invested, which means that responses won’t be immediate.
All in all, it would seem that, between direct mail marketing and email marketing, the best marketing path is not to follow one or the other, but rather, to forge a path between the two. Each strategy accommodates for the other’s weaknesses; it would seem that direct mail and email are a marketing match made in heaven. And while this may not exactly be the path less traveled, it has become that way for a reason: Combined approaches to marketing have been proven successful time and again – remember the term “marketing mix”? As you navigate your business’s individual marketing strategy, we hope that you will keep US Data Corporation in mind for all of your direct mail and email marketing needs.
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US Data Corporation Reviews
Have you had a positive experience with US Data Corporation? We’d love to hear about it! Any client who leaves US Data Corporation reviews on one of the following sites will receive a $100 gift card for future marketing list purchases at US Data Corporation*!
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If you need some inspiration, here are a couple of our favorite testimonials from satisfied customers:
“I’ve had the opportunity to work with US Data since July 2008 and they bring tremendous value for Purchasing Power. US Data has provided excellent value and service for email marketing – we’ve received great response rates from their quality consumer email lists. The account management team provides quick turnaround times on email tests, delivery, and reports. US Data has helped increase response rates for Purchasing Power and I highly recommend them.” - Ann – Purchasing Power
“My rep has been a wonderful asset in gaining quality lists in difficult categories. My rep followed up numerous times and sought further information. As a matter of fact, I have recommended US Data to all my sales staff and colleagues…Great company and quality products.” – Jeff – VP Legacy Design Partners, Inc.
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US Data Corporation Survival Priorities
US Data Corporation, like any American business in recent times, has had to make some adjustments during our economic crisis. Different companies have handled this in different ways and some have been more successful than others. Businesses have had to realign their priorities, and time and again, we have seen those businesses that did not prioritize their customers fall by the wayside. As US Data Corporation has explored various options for riding out the economic downturn, our priority has been unwavering:
US Data Corporation will always, without exception, provide high-quality marketing products and marketing services for our clients.
Whatever else changes, our commitment to quality services will not change. US Data Corporation has not resorted to desperate measures such as decreasing the quality of our products in order to price slash, because we firmly believe that quality products are what make marketing campaigns successful. Our success depends on our clients’ success. We therefore would like to assure you that, no matter what changes we make to our internal structure, our product quality will never suffer. With US Data Corporation by your side, you can breathe easy, because we have a vested interest in seeing your marketing campaigns thrive.
4 Common Mailing List Mistakes
Building a high-quality mailing list is essential for a successful direct marketing campaign. Unfortunately, any one of these mailing list mistakes can cause a marketing campaign to fall flat on its face. Don’t succumb to these common pitfalls – here are some tips to ensure that your mailing lists live up to their full potential.
Mistake #1: Not knowing when to purchase a mailing list
Building your own mailing list can be a cost-effective means of reaching out to existing clients; you already have their contact information and consumer history, and that information is a valuable resource for maintaining an existing client base. However, if your goal is to expand your client base and reach out to new leads, you should consider purchasing a mailing list from a reputable list company. Finding new leads on your own is usually more trouble than it is worth, and it usually results in ineffective bulk mailings. List companies such as US Data Corporation, on the other hand, are experts in audience targeting, and we keep our lists up-to-date and accurate. The convenience and guaranteed accuracy will be worth the extra cost.
Mistake #2: Untargeted mailing lists
Reaching out to new leads can be very costly if you fail to target your audience properly. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: You should not be wasting time, energy and resources reaching out to people or businesses that have no need for, or interest in, your services. Know who your potential consumer is, and then utilize your list company’s targeting selects to build a mailing list of high-quality leads with active interest in your services.
Mistake #3: Out-of-date information
Investing in a mailing list should not be a one-time occasion for your business. Over 1.2 million people move every month – this means that individual mailing lists have fairly short shelf lives, because each lead with out-of-date contact information is one less potential consumer. Refresh your mailing lists regularly to ensure that your message is reaching every last prospective client.
Mistake #4: No follow-up
Remember that old marketing saying, the Rule of Seven? It states that a potential consumer must encounter your marketing message at least seven times before taking action. Don’t be a hit-and-run marketer! No matter how great your mailing list is, you are unlikely to convert any of those leads into clients if you don’t follow up with them. Your mailing list will enable you to make contact with potential consumers, but don’t stop there – use it as a tool to establish and nurture relationships.
We hope that you will keep these tips in mind the next time you need a mailing list for your direct marketing campaign.
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Email Marketing: Upcoming Trends in 2012
The technological landscape is changing rapidly, and email marketing is no exception. While many argue that email is dead, or that social media is replacing email, statistics are showing just the opposite: email marketing is actually set to become even more relevant in 2012 than it was in 2011. Without a doubt, email marketing should continue to be an integral aspect of your overall marketing strategy. However, just like any other online marketing platform, effective email marketing will very likely take on a new appearance in the coming year, and we must adapt to keep up with the times. Here are some of the most important changes likely to take place in email marketing in 2012.
In the past year, one of the biggest trends we have seen in the email marketing world has been email integration with social media, and we expect to see this trend develop even further as social media platforms evolve. Social media and email do not have to compete with one another for your consumer’s attention; they should work together seamlessly to provide your consumer with an overall experience of your company or brand.
One aspect of online marketing that is still in its infancy is mobile and tablet marketing, and this will have a big impact on email marketing in 2012. As more users access emails from their smartphones and tablets, emails will have to accommodate these on-the-move consumers. Responsive design will become very important for email marketers; emails that adjust according to the reader’s screen resolution will be more user-friendly and more likely to convert readers into active consumers. Likewise, emails with reduced file sizes will be able to load quickly on slow wi-fi connections, ensuring that tablet and smartphone users don’t lose interest while waiting for your email to appear.
Studies are also showing that relevancy in your email marketing campaigns is more important today than ever before. Having an email marked as spam is already a big hurdle for email marketers. However, with the recent development of Priority inboxes, where email service providers automatically separate important emails from unimportant ones, getting an email through spam filters unscathed is often still not enough to get that email in front of a reader. It is therefore crucial that your email marketing campaigns be tailored to your audience’s needs and interests so that they will connect with your campaigns in a more personal way. This is a challenge, but it is also a good thing – email marketers should always be looking for new ways to personalize their interactions with consumers. This development will make relevancy a key priority in email marketing, and we expect to see a lot of creativity in this area in 2012.
This is a very exciting and innovative time for email marketing, and we don’t want you to fall behind the times. Don’t believe the myths – email marketing is still just as important as ever, and we hope that you will continue to update your techniques to ensure that your online marketing efforts are reaching their fullest potential.