Websites: Direct Mail’s First Cousin

Websites and Direct Mail are Related

When you were growing up, did you love spending time with an older relative? For me, it was Norma, my mother’s first cousin, who took me to the museums and theater. Her perspective and interest had an influence on me.

In life, the younger generation is shown the way by the older generation, but they make things their own. This also applies to marketing. So now, let’s look at two other first cousins, Direct Mail and Websites. The younger cousin, Websites, has followed in the footsteps of Direct Mail, but it’s reworking Direct Mail tactics for the digital age.

First, let’s see how they are related. Direct Mail is a marketing channel where you communicate one-on-one with your target audience to generate measurable results. This is done by mailing a piece with a message/offer directed towards the recipient. Then you track the response by using offer codes, phone numbers, and so on. Websites do the same thing. You are directing your message to the site’s visitor, and you can track people’s visits with Google Analytics or other software.

Here are just a few examples of how Websites have taken Direct Mail tactics and made them work for digital:

TIMING: Direct Marketers know that if you mail when coinciding with things like events, holidays, and seasons, the better your response rate. For websites, you also need to time it right – such as when to have a pop-up box appear.

BENEFITS: For both cousins, this is crucial. People want to know what’s in it for them. In Direct Mail, long benefit copy often works, but when it comes to Websites, shorter copy with SEO keywords is the way to go.

OFFER/CALL-TO-ACTION: The best way to acquire new customers is to offer something in return for their response. For both cousins, it can be a special savings offer, or a free gift. An informational, downloadable pdf is a good option for Websites.

EASE OF RESPONSE: Whether it’s Direct Mail or Websites, once someone may have interest in your product, you need to keep the momentum going and make it as easy as possible to respond. In Direct Mail, make sure the url you choose for replying online is easy to type into a web browser. And it’s best to use Business Reply Mail, because you don’t want someone to be looking for a stamp. On a website, make sure you provide many opportunities for the visitor to click through so they can reach out to you.

Yes, Direct Mail and Websites have special family ties. So if you are developing a website or landing page, look to Direct Mail for insight. Or create a stronger marketing campaign by combining the two! These cousins work very well together.