Direct mail is a great way to advertise but usually it isn’t the ONLY means to get the word out about your business. Direct mail is best used in conjunction with other marketing methods. To be considered successful the obvious measurement is that the response must generate enough revenue to cover the cost of a mailing list, postage, printing and paper. This would break even and still get the word out about your business. Success beyond that is determined by your own expectations on what you want to generate. However, it is interesting to note that to most industries a standard successful response rate is only 2-3%!
There are a large number of mailing list companies out in the world. The problem with mailing list companies is that they are only as good as the information provided to them. So don’t go into a mailing list expecting 100% accuracy. For a good list try www.info-usa.com.
Lastly, don’t forget to send direct mail to your current clients. When you first make contact with a client, gather as much information about them as you can, i.e. name, address, email, phone number, children’s names and ages (even birthdates). Keep a good client database and make sure every client, every contact hears or sees something from you several times thru the year. Monthly is even better. You need to keep your name and product in front of them as often as possible so that when they need a photographer, you are at the front of their thoughts. Research shows that it’s five to six times more costly to gain a new customer than retain an existing one. So stay in contact with them!
Photo Credit: J Aaron Farr on Flickr