Mailing Services

Say Goodbye to Duplicates and Hello to Increased Campaign Success

As marketers, we do everything we can to streamline our campaigns to run as smoothly and efficiently as possible. In the never-ending quest for peak performance, one of the most consistent frustrations we deal with is data quality.

We all know bad data is frustrating to deal with, but beyond that, the reality is that bad data represents wasted effort, and wasted effort represents a loss of money.

We have access to a ridiculous amount of data, and in many ways, that’s a good thing — more data translates to more targets, a better understanding of those targets, and more avenues by which we can interact with them.

The problem is that all data is not created equal. In addition to generally corrupt data, duplicate data is prevalent, including name and address, household, and family (if multiple families live at the same address). 

So, how do we ensure that in a world of abundance, we’re separating the wheat from the chaff?

Step 1: Educate Yourself with Regulative Processes

It’s worth doing some exploring and familiarizing yourself with postal address regulations and how they affect your deliverability rates. Luckily there are numerous services and mail management software that can help you through this.

For example, Coding Accuracy Support System (CASS) is a USPS developed software that ensures mailing addresses are complete and accurate. In other words, it determines if an address actually exists. CASS also standardizes an address into a format the USPS prefers, which is an invaluable tool for creating easily comparable data points when checking for duplicates.

Another great resource is the National Change of Address (NCOA) registry. The NCOA is a dataset of permanent address changes filed by individuals, families and businesses, and can be important for weeding out which address to keep — and which to toss — in your datasets containing multiple addresses for the same customer.

Step 2: Double Check Mail List Data for Common Errors — By Hand

While it’s easy to be lulled into the convenient trap of relying too heavily on software solutions, it’s important to comb through your data — yes, manually — for common errors. Even the most advanced mail management software still requires human interaction and understanding for optimal outcomes.

How? It’s not uncommon for things like commas, missing spaces, or data simply entered in the wrong field to throw CASS off. Simple mistakes can cost you big when it comes to getting rid of duplicate data sets.

Once you’ve used software to get your data into a great starting point, it’s important to remember that that’s all it is — a great starting point. It’s up to you to do the manual work and ensure the data is uncorrupted beyond that.

Step 3: Remove Excess Info from Your Files

Since we’re solely talking about mailing, it’s important to remove as many variables as you can from your mailing lists, and that means dumping the excess information.

This excess information includes things like email addresses, phone numbers, revenue, years in business, etc., all of which aren’t pertinent to your direct mail vendor.

In short, avoid the clutter and dump the details for your mailings. Keep it simple and save that info for later.

Step 4: Choose Your Direct Mail Vendor Carefully

Much like data sets, not all vendors are created equal, and some will prove to be nightmares to work with. This speaks for itself. You want to consider attributes like experience, referrals, and knowledge of the postal regulations.

A good tip? Make sure you’re working with a vendor who proactively takes initiative when it comes to cleaning lists.

Step 5: Enjoy A Job Well Done

Cleaning and getting rid of the duplicates in your mailing list can be a process, but one that is well worth the effort. When it comes to direct mail campaigns, remember: the better the data you put in, the better the data you get out.

Need a hand with your direct mail marketing? We have the knowledge and experience to help you every step of the way. Contact us to see how we can help you design and execute and effective direct mail program.

8 Simple Secrets to an Effective New Mover Marketing Campaign

Unpacking New Mover Marketing Opportunities

It’s no secret. New Movers provide Great Opportunities. One in five households in a given neighborhood are new residents. They’ve left the comfort and efficiency of their old routines and now are facing uncharted territory (literally). They have to establish new patterns, identify and test out new local services, and start building their new lives and network of resources. In this article we unpack 8 new mover marketing tactics that will help you capture their attention from day 1, and begin building brand loyalty that can last a lifetime.

Establish Your Brand as the Preferred Local Choice

It’s an exciting time. It’s all fresh and new. It’s an expensive time. New movers spend heavily as they set up their new homes. As a marketer, you are uniquely positioned to help make this process smoother for them, while also profitable for your business. In fact, some businesses craft promotions specifically geared toward new movers.

But it’s also a tentative time, in which they must find their new favorites – the new “reliables” they’ll turn to for the goods and services they need on a daily basis. They’re actively seeking stability; to establish the patterns and connections they lost by moving out of the routines they lived in their old neighborhoods. They have a lot of information to gather… but they’re open; they’re creating new shopping and buying habits and the time is ripe for your business to generate awareness, build your brand presence, and make a connection. Take for instance, Home Depot’s approach. They’ve developed a trove of information to help new movers settle in, establishing themselves as a go-to resource, so when those movers are buying gallons of paint and all of those new home essentials, they are more apt to consider Home Depot over a competitor who may not have developed a robust strategy that speaks directly to them.

So, what are other ways to market to new movers? Chances are, the decision to select the neighborhood they’ve chosen has to do with access to amenities they already have identified as important to them: schools, banks, supermarkets. Proximity plays a big role, so choose your demographic accordingly. But there’s much more to marketing to new residents than buying a list of zip codes and sending out a flier.

The Tried and True Channel That Moves Movers to Act

That’s not a dig on direct mail – on the contrary. Done correctly, direct mail is a powerful driver for everything from engagement to acquisition, and to this day it continues to produce strong results. And, if you’re tempted to bypass ‘snail mail’ for an all-digital campaign, keep in mind that according to statistics reported in Direct Mail News, average response rates for direct mail can be up to 40 times higher than email blasts. Which makes even more sense for new homeowners whose mailboxes are still relatively empty, so something eye-catching and valuable has the best chance to end up in their hands. Be first in their mailbox with a friendly “Welcome to the Neighborhood” greeting. By being there immediately, you stand out from the competition and help ensure Yelp is not their only resource.

8 Housewarming Tricks to New Mover Marketing

  1. Start At The Beginning
    Identify clearly, or revisit and validate, your objectives and strategy. Refine your message as needed, and connect audience, message and components to your agenda.
  2. Target Your Target
    Spend the time and money up front to identify the correct new movers for your service. For example, if you’re a hospital or health system marketer focused on connecting new patients with pediatricians in your network, families more so than single adults may be a more targeted approach to consider. The return on investment is worth the extra effort up front, to gain a potentially lifelong patient or customer.
  3. Target Your Data
    It can be worth your while to partner with a direct marketing company who specializes in building the best new mover list for your target audience and strategy. It’s a quality vs. quantity approach; data-driven marketing can pay off exponentially, vs. “shots in the dark” across a less defined audience.
  4. Target Your Message
    Take the time to carefully craft a campaign that will resonate with your audience. For example, a local restaurant could offer new movers a discount on a deal tailored to those who want a break from unpacking boxes. If you’re targeting a family, you could specifically reference kid-friendly menu options.
  5. Be Generous
    New movers are spending heavily – statistics suggest anywhere from two to five times as much is spent by new movers in the first months of residency than established residents spend over the course of a year. Study results showed that 80% of new residents gratefully redeem gift certificates from local vendors. Offer $50 off free groceries, or 5% off of a medicine-cabinet or other home-stocking trip to your pharmacy.
  6. Establish Trust
    New movers are changing everything. They have severed routines and relationships from a network they leaned on and trusted. Convey compassion and offer stability in an accessible and trustworthy way. For example, the local branch of a bank might talk about special savings and checking accounts with low introductory minimums or ATM fees; a pharmacy might focus on personal touches and connections with clients.
  7. Stay Top Of Mind
    You won’t be the only business trying to entice them to make these kinds of connections. So reach out more than once. Response rates for single touch direct mail campaigns tend to yield an industry standard of 1-2% but we have found with a second, highly targeted touch – particularly for our healthcare new mover marketing campaigns – clients have enjoyed response rates up to 5-6%.
  8. Measure and Optimize
    Use your data, not only to carefully select your target new mover audience, but to glean insights from your audiences’ responses to refine future campaigns. For example, if a particular demographic responds best to “Buy One, Get One” offers rather than “Percent Off,” you can utilize this to streamline efforts going forward and serve up exactly what they want.

If you’re looking for quick, effective ways to raise awareness and acquire new customers, a New Mover marketing campaign offers great opportunity. At Strata, we specialize in data-driven, ominchannel marketing campaigns that produce some of the highest response rates in the industry and deliver quick wins for leading marketers in healthcare, grocery, restaurants and similar industries with strong ties to their community.

Contact us to learn how our direct marketing team can help you generate new traffic, build long-term customer relationships and accelerate revenue.


Technology and Data-driven Strategies in Modern Direct Mail Campaigns

Applying modern principles and a multi-channel approach for direct mail that drives measurable bottom line benefits

In today’s rapidly changing, technology-dependent environment, successful direct mail campaigns have to go beyond traditional print mailers, email blasts and isolated ads. A truly informed approach builds upon traditional analog elements, implementing more advanced data driven techniques and incorporating digital components.

There are a variety of modern and creative ways you can enhance traditional direct mail with digital elements to better target and engage customers. Implementing such methods allows for deeper insights gained through response tracking, analysis and measurement, and enhances your lead scoring efforts.

  1. Data:
    Utilize the information you have on your consumers at every point along your campaign. Start with clean mailing lists, and personalize each element you send. Go beyond basic profile information and look at all the data to truly customize your approach. Analyze user behavior, product preferences, location and life stages to create a highly personalized and interactive campaign, and significantly improve your response rates. Implement plans and processes for the management and optimization of additional data you acquire as a result of multichannel, integrated campaigns.
  2. Modern Mailers:
    Distinctive, highly personalized mail with customized offers and easy-to-use response mechanisms are still an effective way to connect with customers and prospects. But modern direct mail is not an isolated, print event. It’s a holistic, integrated communication strategy with multi-channel elements that take your target audience down a progressive path, engaging them further each step of the way. The fact is, direct mail remains competitive with digital methods, continuing to deliver 3.7% average response rates.
  3. Email:
    Email continues to be one of the most effective, and certainly cost-efficient, channels, but only if your message is relevant. Ensure your messaging is placed within the framework of a larger strategy and integrated with other campaign efforts. Enhance print pieces with corresponding emails that expand your message and continue to engage recipients. Linking direct mail to your marketing automation efforts is a value add tactic that can measurably improve response regardless of where the contact is in the buying process.
  4. Web:
    Incorporating digital elements like personalized landing pages not only increases the opportunity to inform consumers about your offering or products, it provides rich data you can use to further fine-tune your current and future campaigns. For new contacts, you’ll acquire data you may not have previously had. You can add these respondents to marketing workflows should they not have responded to other tactics, or where emails were not linked to landing pages or forms.
  5. Mobile:
    Consider adding mobile as an element in your direct mail campaign. Again, integration is the key: for example, combine direct mailers with personalized coupon offers and provide recipients with an easy way to redeem them via a mobile phone. Make it easy for them to request an additional 5% off, while also collecting their data without requiring too much information from them. Mobile can continue to be wrapped into the other channels used in the campaign; after completion of a landing page form, a next-step call to action and additional offer can prompt respondents to provide mobile information they may not have provided before.
  6. Marketing Resource Management (MRM):
    With the advent and explosion of technology options, there are a myriad of applications to help you streamline and synchronize your direct marketing efforts. One in particular is Marketing Resource Management software. By centrally managing your direct mailers, email templates and ads, you get a holistic view of all of the elements that can be utilized in a campaign. With all of the assets centrally stored it makes it easier for those executing the campaigns to expedite the process. MRM’s inherent ability to drive consistency and coordination makes this more effective approach to direct marketing highly attainable and efficient.

Conclusion:

Direct mail continues to be an evolving and effective tool for everything from acquisition and engagement to loyalty and retention. Figuring out how to best incorporate modern digital elements to enhance your efforts is now a non-negotiable, rather than a nice-to-have. But it has to be done in an informed, strategic way. Top Marketing Performers go beyond the trends and find ways to maximize their data, utilize personalization and leverage multiples channels, including the latest technologies. The result are powerful direct mail-driven marketing programs that drive measurable response and contribute directly to your bottom line.

Contact us to learn more.