Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing June 2018 Newsletter.
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Tips for Better Direct Mail
By Beth Negus Viveiros, Chiefmarketer.com
If you’re looking for a multichannel lift,
consider adding direct mail to your marketing mix.
“People don’t throw out the mail—everyone is trying to find
a way to use it as part of a multichannel campaign,” says John Sisson,
president, HBT Inc.
Marketers who are utilizing direct mail are getting more clever about who
they mail to, says Sisson. “Acquisition is happening more effectively,
because data has gotten better—marketers are building models based on
their own best clients and overlaying data to create segments of the folks
who are the best fit based on response or lifetime value.
“As we become more and more addicted to smart phones, it can be a nice
departure to look at mail,” says Grant Johnson, chief measurable marketing
officer, Responsory, noting etailers like Amazon are turning to direct
mail to create awareness and response around key times like the holidays.
And while Starbucks loyalty program is heavily powered by its mobile app,
the company still sends physical cards to members at certain status
levels, to make them feel special.
“With the oversaturation of electronic channels, better production
capabilities and rise in automation, everyone is getting back on the
direct mail bandwagon and trying it in different ways,” says Johnson.
“From a haptic standpoint, direct mail is more memorable, because you’re
able to immerse yourself in the content because its tactile,” agrees
Lianne Wade, vice president, marketing, Universal Wilde, noting that new
tactics such as UV inks, lenticular printing and 3-D pop-ups are offering
new creative opportunities.
Here are seven tips for getting noticed in the mailbox:
1. Make it multichannel:
Direct mail works well when it tied to other triggers, such
as an email alerting recipients to watch their physical mailbox, and then
another email after the direct mail piece drops, all with alignment in the
call to action to drive people to the same place.
“Think about what you are trying to sell and who is your customer,” says
Wade. “What is the value of your relationship and how does it fit into
other channels? We’ve had success sending warm-up emails to let people
know a package is coming, so they’ll pay attention [when it arrives].”
“Sending one direct mail piece is not a campaign—you want to have multiple
touches to engage [prospects,] because you know your audience isn’t paying
attention to just one channel,” says Sisson.
2. Be on target:
Segment your audience to make sure your message is on target, and use
personalization, but make sure you get it right. “I once got a mailing for
‘John R. Sisson,’ which is great, except that my middle name is Edward.
Maybe I was in the right segment, but they showed me upfront that their
data wasn’t good.
“People expect personalization today, and if your data is bad, that can do
more damage than benefit,” adds Wade.
3. It’s about the customer:
Your creative should be about the customer and not the company. Customers
want the focus on communications to be on them and not what you’re
selling, says Sisson.
4. Try different formats:
Test different package sizes, colors and textures. “If [your mailing] is a
number 10 envelope and white with a window, then it’s just like everything
else,” says Sisson. Copy changes are also easy and essential to test,
notes Johnson, and can help create effective control packages.
5. Know your vertical:
Different markets respond to different types of creative approaches. In
financial marketing, for example, “official” looking mailers get more
opens than anything looking promotional. Know what your audience wants to
6. Make it measurable:
Having a way to track response—such as a URL, QR code, dedicated 800
number or some other form of personalization.
7. Get the data right:
“Make sure your data is pristine and that you’re targeting the right
people,” says Johnson. “The list is the most important thing.” A digital
test before you roll out a direct mail initiative can help insure that
you’re targeting the right demographic with the right product, to see if
there is a true affinity.
Steps to Become a Great Marketing Leader
By Elie Goodman,
Great marketing leaders didn’t achieve their success overnight. They seek
to continually improve their skillsets, empower others and think
The skillsets, backgrounds and experience levels of
marketing professionals are very diverse, which brings both opportunities
and challenges for the companies they work with. While many professional
industries have strictly defined educational and professional paths, the
marketing industry has few rules or strict requirements for entrance.
Almost anyone can call themselves a marketer and find some company to pay
them for it. Yet does that mean anyone can succeed at marketing? Well,
that’s a flat ‘no.’ The professionals who take on leadership roles that
help businesses drive real growth and awareness take great care to educate
themselves, think critically, operate well within a team, listen and
continually work to improve their communications skills. As in many
aspects of life, the cream will ultimately rise to the top. Here’s how you
• Pay Attention:
Marketing isn’t about flashy graphics and catchy stunts (although those
tactics do have their place at times). It’s important to really pay
attention to the needs of the organization, understand the company’s
goals, and create a plan to support those goals. All of your activities
should be executed with those goals in mind. To help you along the way,
you also need to pay attention to the marketing landscape: What are people
doing? How are they interacting with your brand? Where do they spend their
• Know Your Stuff:
If you’re new to marketing, you have to put in the extra effort to learn
the skills, trends, opportunities, tactics and strategies that will lead
to success. Likewise, if you are a long-time pro, it’s still important to
put in the extra effort to learn the skills, trends, opportunities,
tactics and strategies that will enable you to retain your role as a
leader. Self-education is critical and continual. Your team will see right
through you if you don’t position yourself as an expert.
• Find a Mentor (or be a Mentor):
To become a great marketing leader, a mentor or coach can be uber
important. Look and ask around, and you will find that most great leaders
have had a mentor at one point or another. If a mentor hasn’t naturally
fallen into your daily life, seek one out. And as you advance in your
career, seek to be a mentor to others. You can learn a great deal about
your profession and personal life in general by helping others.
• Work Hard:
Throughout all ranks, you need to work hard. Not only does it help you
hone your skills, but it builds trust and respect among your team members.
Be willing to get dirty. Show up early and stay late. Dig into tasks that
some would consider “below your pay grade.” Great leaders aren’t afraid of
hard work, and they do what they need to do to build trust. The “do as I
say, not as I do” mantra won’t serve you well.
• Don’t Get Caught up in Trends:
Some trends will come and go quickly (like hyper colors and a slew of
other bad fashion decisions in the 90s). Don’t fall victim to constantly
jumping on the newest and hottest train. Pay attention to the needs of
your organization, and then discern whether or not the latest trends are
truly beneficial. Sometimes they will be, sometimes they won’t.
• Don’t Let Decisions Slow You Down:
A leader is required to make decisions, sometimes hard ones. While
transitional and transformative decisions need to be taken very seriously,
you can’t spend an abundance of time and energy making them. You can
overanalyze data forever (and nowadays there is plenty of data to go
around), but at some point, you need to make a move. Effective leaders
understand when enough information is enough, and then they move forward.
Every decision isn’t going to be right, but the inability to make timely
decisions is always going to be wrong.
• Understand Your Talent:
Great leaders not only understand their own talents, but they understand
how to utilize and grow the talents of others in order to create a
well-functioning team. This helps individuals find success, as well as the
company. I’ve always said, “give your team the tools to leave the company
today, but keep them happy enough so they never want to leave.” An
employee who feels successful will stick around for the long haul.
• Strive to be a Better Communicator:
Great leaders keep their teams informed and educated. As a leader, you are
often privy to information the rest of the team may not know. It’s
important to share what you can, whenever you can. Talk to your team
members about what you’re doing and how it will impact them. Be open and
honest with them about how they are performing and provide positive
feedback whenever you can. Communication will provide the confidence your
team needs to trust you and your decisions.
Great marketing leaders didn’t achieve their success overnight. They seek
to continually improve their skillsets, empower others and think
strategically. They are team players who aren’t afraid to get dirty, and
they even seek it out.
Secrets to Increasing Direct Mail Response Rates
By Jason Sullock, Martechadvisor.com
Ultimately, your brand can
experience massive growth from the power of direct mail. When done
correctly, you’ll be unstoppable.
Direct mail is experiencing a massive boom
in 2018, with tech advances and development thrusting the communication
method into the digital age. This article will identify the direct mail
possibilities for your brand, and the secrets to getting the most out of
Direct mail is enjoying its time in the news in 2018. The traditional form
of communication is front and center in the digital age, as more brands
look for creative methods of speaking to their prospects. While email
marketing and digital advertising have their merits, direct mail is
reaching a large chunk of consumers that are falling out of love with
brands. For example, there are more than 269 billion emails sent per day,
with the average office worker receiving 121 every day. Yet, less than
half of all consumers trust the message within an email, but significantly
more believe the message in direct mail.
All successful marketing campaigns start with clear and accurate data.
Without this information to hand, you are unable to appeal to the correct
consumers, essentially wasting your time and budget. Research the market
audience, analyze your competitor’s success and identify peak periods
within your particular field. With all of this data, you can then begin
the outline for your marketing plan.
Similarly, you must segment your consumer data to tailor the campaign to
their needs. Hyper-personalized marketing is effective as you are speaking
directly to your prospect with information that will significantly benefit
their life, thus improving brand engagement. However, all of that is not
possible without accurate data. We have seen many clients over the years
almost throw their mailing away due to not placing their services in front
of the correct people, at the right time. Therefore, we suggest looking
into the possibilities of purchasing new mailing lists of prospects,
matching the profiles you are looking to target.
The previous points leads nicely to our second objective - identify your
audience. Blindly hoping that your mailing reaches the right consumer is a
significant waste of budget. You could send millions of direct mail
pieces, yet only have a hundred opened. However, if you reduce your
mailing and identify a niche within your market, you stand a better chance
of reaching the correct people.
As mentioned above, personalization is essential to the longevity of your
marketing campaign. In simple terms, it could spell the difference between
success and failure. In this day and age, with our personal data so
readily available for brands, consumers not only expect, but demand, you
personalize their experience with your company. Over 84% of prospects are
more likely to buy from a brand tailoring their advertising to their
buying habits and needs. We can only imagine the number of times mail
addressed to the ‘homeowner’ or ‘owner’ goes ignored. Yet, mailing
directly addressed to you and delivered through your door stands a huge
chance of being picked up and, subsequently, read. Personalized direct
mail is, quite literally, your opportunity to get your foot in the door,
at the right time and with the right people.
Copy and design
Your copy and design is the foundation to your marketing campaign, so make
it good (and relevant to your business). Firstly, a picture speaks a
thousand words, so where possible to include excellent graphics, we
recommend utilizing the space. The images should reflect and support your
message. However, do not go overboard. One or two graphics, along with a
small paragraph of text is enough to persuade your audience - depending on
the size of your mailing.
Your copy should feature a clear call-to-action. Without a call-to-action,
your audience does not have the next steps to hand, rendering your
campaign, effectively, useless. Your call-to-action should aid in
converting recipients to consumers, leading to an increase in revenue. For
example, a simple ‘sale ends today’ message is far superior to paragraphs
of text. Do not fall into the trap of cluttering your mailing with several
call-to-actions, as prospects are more likely to ignore your message. You
need to be accurate and precise, gently encouraging them to your website
or the particular goals and objectives identified at the beginning stage.
It goes without saying that tracking your campaign is critical. If your
campaign happens to be successful, by tracking the responses you can hope
to replicate it in the future. Tracking responses needn’t be a complicated
process - you can incorporate QR codes or specific URLs to your mailing -
especially if you are testing several campaigns at the same time.
Measuring your marketing also helps to track budget and analyze whether
you can afford to input more time and resources into the next, and so on.
Direct mail has stepped out of the shadows of digital advertising in 2018,
yet combining it with your digital ads could significantly improve
response rates. For example, programmatic mail is the buzzword of the
direct mail industry. This data-driven approach provides
hyper-personalized mail within a short space of time. If a consumer
happens to be browsing your website, places something in their cart and
later abandons your site without completing their purchase, you could
appeal to them through mail marketing within 12 hours. Basket reminder
emails are largely ignored, but it’s much harder to ignore advertising
delivered to your door the next day.
Win Yankee Tickets!
Enjoy a great day at Yankee Stadium!
We are giving away two tickets to see the New York Yankees.
you have to do to win is be the first telephone caller (please don’t hit reply or send an email). Voice
mail messages count so it's fine to leave a message. Call Michael Borkan at
(631) 667-5500 x 11. These tickets are great seats and close to the field!
Wednesday June 13th, 2018. Yankees vs.
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Seven Tips for Better Direct Mail
Eight Steps to Become a Great Marketing Leader
The Secrets to Increasing Direct Mail Response Rates
Mike Borkan's Apps & Links - Apps & Web sites you probably
View Samples of Our Work
Direct Mail Humor!
Talon welcomes the following new clients this month to our growing roster
Mike's Favorite Apps & Links:
Some interesting things to check out...
- Invites for Groups. Send event invites for anything, to anyone, by text,
in under 30 seconds.
Uberconference.com - No PINs.
No Downloads. UberConference provides everything you need for effective
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Printify.com - Print on demand
services. Create and sell custom products with your designs, this site
will print and ship to your customers.
Workflowy.com - Find Your Focus.
WorkFlowy helps you break big ideas into manageable pieces, then focus on
one piece at a time.
Google Trends - Learn and explore
what the world is searching.
Namelix.com - Business Name
Generator. Generate a short, brandable business name using artificial
Did you know Talon offers the following services?
Click on the links below to see samples.
Direct Mail Humor!
Click on image below to enlarge.
Do you need help marketing to your clients? Talon can
help! Call Michael Borkan at 631-667-5500 x 11 to learn how to
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