Here Are Critical Questions to Ask and the Tell-Tale Signs (Part III)
- Are all of their services done in-house? This is a big one and a critical question. If they sub-out all, most, or any of your mailing there is automatically a higher risk to you because there is no quality control. They may not have the expertise, or no infrastructure to support. You are now paying a middle-man, and you are asking for trouble with so many hands in the pot.
- Will my mailings have a local feel to them and will they include personalization to be more effective? Many small printers and letter shops do not have the latest equipment to produce good quality personalized mailings. To be more effective and stand out from your competitors, you mail has to have your local address and it needs to have your prospect’s name personalized throughout your letter, not just on the address block. Laser Personalization equipment (made by Xerox and Kodak) is expensive but well worth it to the professional marketing companies that understand the importance of better response rates and your image.
- What other clients or industries do you work with? You will get some insight from who else they work with by their answers because they may be merely printers and not marketers; advertisers and not ‘sales’ promotion oriented or they are a list company not a true direct marketing organization.
- Are the samples of your mailing sent to me from the beginning of the run? Many companies, to save money and cut corners, change the stock of your mailer once they get past the initial part of the production run. This saves them money by using inferior materials (paper and envelopes) for the rest of your mailing. You mailing now arrives in pretty bad shape in the mailbox after that cheap material goes through the rigorous postal delivery machinery, processing and handling. Do you care about your image? You need to. It is the first impression you make to your prospective clients.
- Do you offer personalized letters vs. postcards? If you ask any professional direct marketers or attend any of the DMA (Direct Marketing Association) tradeshows, you will learn that letter packages are the most effective and the most widely used direct mail format in the marketplace. Do you ever see single postcards at Hallmark stores? No, you see greeting cards that get mailed in an envelope. It’s more personal that way. Statistically, invitation or letter packages yield better results; historically about twice as many reservations. Your marketing material is the first contact with your target audience. This is where the consumer population begins to form an image of you and your company. Postcards are just not perceived to be as professional with consumers. Everything important, personal or confidential arrives in your mailbox concealed in an envelope. Our goal is for your seminar invitation to be received as personal mail and not perceived as ‘junk mail’ or an advertisement.
Jorge Villar is President of Response Mail Express (RME), with more than 26 years of direct marketing experience, he is known in several industries for his ability to create mail packages that garner the highest response rates. He is responsible for the Seminar Success program that, for the last 17 years has accounted for more than 65% of the events being held in the nation with over 14 million individuals making reservations. Mr. Villar has also been very successful marketing to physicians and business owners regarding Success Planning and Asset Protection. Response Mail Express, and parent company DME, is a $100+ million marketing powerhouse, housing over 600 employees in their 2 state-of-the-art facilities in Florida. Their marketing ideas are presently being utilized by over 10,000 clients, including: top producing advisors, estate planning attorneys, large financial organizations, health care organizations, universities and many other industries. Mr. Villar is a frequent key note speaker at national financial symposium and training conferences.
Academy Guest Blogger
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (800) 846-1555
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