Talon Mailing & Marketing

561 Acorn Street
Deer Park, NY 11729

(631) 667-5500


Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing June 2018 Newsletter.

To view this newsletter using your Internet browser click here:

Seven 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 see.

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.

Eight Steps to Become a Great Marketing Leader

By Elie Goodman, Azbigmedia.com

Great marketing leaders didn’t achieve their success overnight. They seek to continually improve their skillsets, empower others and think strategically.

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 can too:

• 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 time?

• 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.

The 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 your consumers.

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.

Accurate data

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.

Identify audience

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.

Modern Technology

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. 

All 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. Nationals 7:05 PM.

Do you know of anyone else who would be interested in receiving our newsletter?  Please let us know by email:  mb@talon-mailing.com

To learn more about our company, please visit our Web site: www.talon-mailing.com or contact Michael Borkan at (631) 667-5500 x 11.

If you do not wish to receive the Talon Mailing & Marketing Newsletter please click here: 



In this Issue:

Seven Tips for Better Direct Mail

Eight Steps to Become a Great Marketing Leader

The Secrets to Increasing Direct Mail Response Rates

Ticket Giveaway!

New Clients

Mike Borkan's Apps & Links - Apps & Web sites you probably haven't seen

View Samples of Our Work

Newsletter Archives

Direct Mail Humor!

New Clients:

Talon welcomes the following new clients this month to our growing roster of customers:
  • Lifetex Safety

  • Detox Health

  • 4 New Lists From Statlistics

Mike's Favorite Apps & Links:

Some interesting things to check out...

Hobnob.io - 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 meetings, minus all the stuff you don't.

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 intelligence.

Work Samples:

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 increase revenue.

Newsletter Archives:

Click here if you wish to see past newsletters.  

Click on These Links to Learn More About Talon:

The Tour


Our Services

List Rentals

Postage Rates


Archived Newsletters

Contact Us


If you do not wish to receive the Talon Mailing & Marketing Newsletter please click here: