When selling to consumers, spend your direct-mail dollars when you have the best chance for profitable returns. Consumers buy for many different reasons, and you have to zero in on what’s best for your product or service. Ask yourself these questions when planning your mailing:
- Are your competitors mailing to the same lists that you are?
- Do the people on your list buy regularly by mail?
- Have they ever bought by mail?
- Can they buy at your store, on the phone, or at your website?
- Are they the correct age group to respond?
- Is your offer gender related? Or ethnicity related?
- Can your recipient afford to buy your products?
- How will the consumer want to pay for the purchase?
- Does the consumer need your products?
- Does the recipient’s location make a difference for service?
- Has the consumer purchased similar or related products?
- Are your prices higher or lower than your competitors’ prices?
- Have you mailed this list before, and what response did you get?
- Can you buy a more refined list for better results?
- How will recipients receive their purchase—by pickup or shipping?
- Will you offer coupons or a discount?
- Is this list reliable?
A good list broker can help you find the answers and the lists you need at prices you can afford. By a good list broker, I mean someone who wants to build a business relationship with you—not just take your first order and forget about you. As a small business, you won’t be buying a million names—maybe only thousands—so explain that you will continue to use the same broker if they give you the service you need. Insist on knowing about all the lists available in your target market before making your final decision. Great lists can produce great results, so look at all that are available.