Marketing

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

New mover marketing is all the rage right now, and for good reason – but getting started can be a bit confusing if you’re new to the game. That’s why in this blog, along with in our most recent YouTube video, we’ll help you achieve a clear understanding of what New Mover Marketing is, and how it could be used for your business. First, we’ll go over how new mover marketing is defined, what a new mover is, and how this marketing technique can be utilized to reach and acquire new customers. 

What’s a “New Mover”?

In general, a new mover is someone who’s recently moved to your area, and since they’re new, is looking for a new doctor, dentist, grocery, vet, and more, to establish trust in – and hopefully frequent. 

Is New Mover Marketing the Same as Regular Marketing?

In short, no! New mover marketing is a specified, niche tactic that helps you reach new residents in your area while they’re actively establishing new routines and purchasing habits. It’s all about making a strong, quality impression at the same time someone is looking for your services. Different than regular marketing – where you’re mostly informing current customers about new products, services, or promotions, new mover marketing tactics focus solely on bringing in new customers that have just entered your target market. 

The Importance of New Mover Marketing

New mover marketing is one of the best ways to gain and retain more customers. If you really think about it, new movers have no customer loyalty to any specific business – yet. They tend to be more receptive and open-minded to marketing campaigns from any business in their new area. They’re also more likely to listen, and are easily attracted to the first business that reaches out to them (so you need to act fast)! Yet, don’t act too fast, because it’s also important to market yourself correctly and effectively. Remember, you typically only get one shot at a first impression, so make sure you present your business the right way. 

Let’s quickly go through an example of how exactly a new mover marketing campaign helps you attract new customers. Suppose a new family moves into your town. They’re unfamiliar with what services/businesses are available. Soon after move in, they see a mail campaign for your grocery store in their mailbox. Because they’ll (sooner rather than later) need to go get some groceries, they may be more inclined to visit your store instead of another because you reached out and introduced your store and its services, first. As long as you market yourself correctly, you now have a new, and potentially loyal, customer! 

Next Steps

With new mover marketing, the opportunities are endless! Be sure to watch the video, below, to dive a bit deeper. You’ll hear from Strata’s Director of Marketing, Caitlin, as she goes through more specifics. Or, if you’d like to get started on your next new mover marketing campaign and discuss this concept with one of our experts, contact us today

Laying Out the Pros and Cons

We know it can be a long process to research, find, and decide on a marketing solutions company that achieves your objectives. We also know that the full package – good data, quality design, excellent messaging, great customer service, mailing and fulfillment, and quantifiable results – is the goal, but not always the outcome. Since we get asked about it from time to time, in this blog, we’re going to cover why you may want to choose to work with a marketing company over a CRM services company who also happens to strategize and launch campaigns. Before you make your decision, give this a quick read. 

Not Always the “Path of Least Resistance” 

First and foremost, although it may appear “easier” to partner with a CRM service to launch your campaigns (because they have access to CRM) – they don’t always have immediate access to other capabilities. For example, they likely don’t have in-house creative design, printing, fulfillment, and mailing, and if they do have some of them – they likely don’t have all of them to execute a turnkey campaign. The main focus of a CRM company is usually just that – customer relationship management. Their key offering is their ability to compile and supply lists – which they may be excellent at doing, but what will they provide in terms of other areas of expertise? 

Because of the outsourced services they use (such as those listed above), CRM companies can’t always make campaign changes on the fly. They’re usually unable to print on-demand, have their artist make quick modifications, make last-minute changes to the mailing process, or most importantly, optimize the campaign based on results, midstream. 

The Marketing Differentiators

So, what’s the alternative? Partnering with a marketing solutions company that offers expertise in everything from implementation to optimization. Marketing companies are often also connected directly to the list compiler, and even more than that, they’re usually more closely if not directly connected to everything else you’ll need and use during the campaign production process – from strategy to printing. Since many if not all of their services are in-house (including design, print production, fulfillment, and mailing), you can always make changes and improvements mid-stream and at rapid speed. They can simply call on their marketing team of strategists, artists, print production associates, and others to change gears, swiftly improving the efficiency of the program while it’s in progress and effectively increasing campaign ROI. 

Additionally, marketing companies focus solely on marketing strategy and production, and the more years of experience under their belts of doing so – the better. Marketing execution is not an add-on to marketing companies. It’s what they do, day in and day out. And the right marketing company will be able to simultaneously execute concurrent campaigns, whether single-touch or many, with corresponding digital to (targeted, specified) customers and prospects. If you’re lucky or do your research, you’ll find a marketing company that also incorporates backend fulfillment, seamless management, granular personalization, and attribution, and will be a team of dedicated experts, creators, innovators, and most importantly, marketers. You get the picture we’re painting. It’s important for a marketer or marketing team to also value and provide quality execution and customer care to every client, and ensure you have the reporting, understanding, and peace of mind you need, with 1:1 attribution, automated data exchange, and a detailed dashboard. 

Next time you’re debating, think through this blog first. Do you just need a simple marketing campaign with CRM first, or do you need a multi-touch, well-focused marketing campaign with accurate, up-to-date lists and quality attribution? 

What Makes Data Good Data

We always, always appreciate conversations with customers. Especially those that make us think more thoroughly about our services. We’re constantly open to changing and evolving to provide the best offerings possible for loyal and new customers alike. Recently, we’ve had quite a few conversations about data, and have realized that it’s important for us to provide some insight into our somewhat unique data philosophy, specifically as it relates to direct mail. We’re all about the best data – not always (and not usually) the most data.

Our Direct Mail Data Philosophy

Direct mail may not be the cheapest form of marketing – but it’s often one of the most effective. In fact, 61% of customers find direct mail influential in making purchasing decisions. Compared to email’s average lifespan of 17 seconds, direct mail can last 17 days. We could go on and on about why we love direct mail, which is why we made a complete blog with tons of other eye-popping stats.

While direct mail is very effective – it’s only as effective as the data behind it. We believe it’s important to reach the right people, which is not usually all the people, and this can sometimes be puzzling to our customers. Our philosophy? We’re more worried about and interested in the success of your campaign rather than the number of people we send to. Plus, while we appreciate business income, we more highly value long-lasting business relationships built on trust (which primarily comes from a good track-record). In short – quality over quantity, always.

When we pull our data, you’ll notice that compared to others in the industry, we don’t always end up providing as many contacts. This may look and seem like “less”, but it’s really providing you with “more”. We won’t give you more contacts than necessary, we won’t waste your time with leads that are dead on arrival, we won’t waste your money on mail that ends up in the trash, and we will deliver higher ROI. Many others in the industry will provide you with a bigger list, but one with a portion of people who will trash your direct mail – wasting your time and budget. So, next time you see a long list of “prospects”, don’t let it knock your socks off before diving into who those people really are, what they want, and whether or not they’ll actually respond to you, and, more importantly – become a customer.

Why Our Data is Strong

Strata has years of experience as well as many great connections within the industry. Our data compilation process is rigorous, and one that we’ve worked on for years to define and strengthen. To ensure it’s effective and valuable, we continually evaluate our data sources time and again, never assuming they’re “good as they are”. And similar to how open we are to customer feedback, innovation, and change, we’re always open to changing and improving our data sources so that data we provide, again, will actually return ROI.

Interested in working with Strata to get the most out of good data? Contact us.

That Will Interest Your Audience

In a few of our recent blogs, Buzzword Alert: Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) and The Pros and Cons of EDDM, we gave you insight into what EDDM is, as well as its pros, cons, and alternatives. In this blog, we’re going over the top 5 best EDDM campaign ideas – in the case that you do choose to go the EDDM route as a part of your marketing strategy.

An EDDM Refresh

USPS’ Every Door Direct Mail service is a blanketed mailing approach sent to all of the potential customers near your business (depending on the routes you choose). Utilizing the provided mapping tool, that provides demographic data information based on census reports, you can choose the routes you’d like your mail piece delivered. Additionally, you can schedule this delivery for whenever it makes sense for your business. The mail you send can be self-designed, or you can work with a company like Strata to design it effectively and professionally. Learn more about what EDDM is at this blog, or explore its pros and cons, here.

Now that we’ve given you a refresh on what EDDM is – let’s dive into some effective campaigns to get you the most ROI.

Campaign Idea 1: Generosity

One of the best ways to entice customers is to provide a generous discount or offer. Or, simply giving them a small something that’s free – whether it’s small and attached to your mailer or provided through a sign-up or scheduled meeting – goes a long way.

Nothing gets customers in the door more than coupons, price deductions, and rewards. Give them something to entice them to at least come in and give your business a chance – even if that’s just to get a discount or redeem an offer. It’s quite likely that once they’re in (as long as you provide good products and/or services), they’ll return.

Introducing free giveaways can pique customer interest, making them feel like you care and are willing to give them something for their attention and possible business. Plus, if the giveaway is received via an exchange, once they “sign up” or schedule a meeting, you’ll then have their information for future communication.

Campaign Idea 2: Urgency

Whether we like it or not, humans like to know what’s going on. You know the phrase – curiosity killed the cat. We get “FOMO” – the fear of missing out – more often than we’d like to admit. That’s why using a term like “save-the-date” is so effective. The potential customer will likely read the rest of the card, because they’ll want to know what’s going on in their area. When you create urgency, people feel that they need to be in-the-know and on-the-go. Obviously, you’ll need some sort of “event” to accompany this type of mailer, but it could be something as small and simple as a limited time discount week, days or day, or a grand opening or reopening.

Campaign Idea 3: Playfulness

Entertaining and playful campaigns do really well when it comes to EDDM. This could mean including a scratch off game, or poll to make the mailer interactive and exciting. Interactivity can get the customer’s attention, and maybe even cause them to feel somewhat invested in getting the answers, winning the prizes, or otherwise finding an end result.

Another way to energize your mailer? Maybe it includes some sort of pop-up upon unfolding. Or, try invisible ink, dye cuts, and other unique folds. Any of these options can help you stand out from the pack and bring out energetic playfulness in your potential customers.

Campaign Idea 4: Proximity

A great way to get customers through your doors is to emphasize how easy it is for them to do so. Focus your mailer around the idea of proximity and the ease of locating and entering your business. Be sure to include an easy-to-read map of your location(s), and add in words such as “close by”, “just an order away”, or, “just a few blocks away” if that’s possible and applicable. With this type of campaign, you can also include a limited time offer to compliment the proximity with urgency. For example, “Stop in for $10 off your order of $50, we’re right down the road”.

Campaign Idea 5: Simplicity

We’ve all heard the acronym KISS. A great campaign tactic is to keep it very simple. Most viewers don’t have the time to digest a whole mailer and all of its contents, so limited text and bold blocks of imagery and/or color can go a long way. Simply providing your store name, address, website, and some great photos and blocks of color can create mystery that speaks just as much as content. Maybe limit it to just one good coupon. This kind of mailer can create recognition and brand awareness without overloading the customer with information.

Like we’ve said before, EDDM is not for every company and its marketing strategy – but if you do choose EDDM for your next campaign, make sure you do it strategically and effectively by using one or two of the campaign ideas above. In general, don’t forget that every mailer should at the very least include contact information, a compelling call-to-action, and memorable branding.

Looking for some more in-depth help to get started? Give us a call or shoot us an email.

What You Need to Know

In today’s world of marketing, we’re constantly surrounded by buzzwords – both old and new. As we evolve and keep up with the newest technology and trends, these buzzwords evolve as well. Yet, some buzzwords – like “Every Door Direct Mail”, otherwise known as EDDM, have stood the test of time for quite a while. In this blog, we’re breaking down this buzzword, walking you through its positives and negatives, and explaining when your company should or shouldn’t use it.

What is EDDM?

Every Door Direct Mail (better known as EDDM) from USPS is a blanketed mailing approach sent to potential customers near your business. USPS utilizes a mapping tool that holds demographic data based on census reports, such as age-range, household size, and income. Factors like these can help your company choose the routes you’d like to deliver your mail piece(s) to. Additionally, you can schedule that delivery for any time mail gets delivered.

You may create the mailer yourself, but it’s recommended you work with a company (like Strata) to help you design both professionally and effectively. The USPS website states, “Based on your unique business needs, either create an EDDM mailing yourself or get help with any part of the mail design, printing, preparation, and drop-off process using USPS affiliate vendors or find a local printer in the USPS Printer Directory.”

What Does it Cost?

The cost of EDDM varies, but it’s usually a lower cost option for marketing mail (which we’ll go over later on in this blog). You first have to choose between two options, EDDM Retail and EDDM BMEU, which you can read more in-depth about, here. The costs associated with these options are as follows:

  • EDDM Retail® USPS Marketing Flats – $0.20 per piece
  • EDDM BMEU USPS Marketing Mail Flats – as low as $0.168 per piece

What’s Good About EDDM?

EDDM is a good option to have if your marketing budget is low. It’s also possible to use it as a marketing test-run to see what audience members are most likely to respond to your communication (especially if you don’t have the budget for reporting).

It’s most often used for generalized, non-specific marketing awareness or brand campaigns. If you simply want to get the word out there – to anyone and everyone about your business, EDDM is an option to consider. Using EDDM can help you to avoid high postage rates, as long as you have a smaller print job in one geographic area.

Why Should I Consider Not Using EDDM?

EDDM definitely comes with its trade-offs. With it, you’ll lose the ability to target individuals based on very specified credentials, and won’t have as much leeway when it comes to time-to-market. Additionally, if your EDDM campaign is too large the cost savings you’d get with postage would be practically meaningless due to the increase in production processing. Lastly, EDDM doesn’t give you any options in terms of personalization – which, if you’ve read some of our blogs, you know is important in direct mail campaign effectiveness and ROI.

What are the Alternatives?

Before using EDDM, think through other ways you can get your message across, and who you’re trying to get that message to. Instead of using a blanketed geographic approach, you may want to try a more specified campaign like our SmartMove services (personalized, multi-touch mail that’s sent specifically to new movers). This way, you can better pin-point your audience, and provide a better experience to those who receive your mail.

Or, maybe the best marketing strategy for your company isn’t even mail at all, or is mail that includes a digital touchpoint. A more multichannel campaign could be your answer.

EDDM isn’t for every company and its marketing strategy – but as experts in the industry, we can say that it works for some companies. Yet, there are many times a more targeted strategy, like our new mover marketing options, will work better. Wondering how you can get started on your next direct mail or multichannel campaign? We’re here to help. Simply contact us whenever you’re ready.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

Multichannel campaigns can be complicated to create, and once you create them, even more work needs to be put in to make them as effective as possible. In the last YouTube video of our Multichannel Marketing series, we’ll go how to optimize your multichannel campaign for the best success and highest ROI.

What’s an Optimum Multichannel Campaign?

An optimum multichannel campaign is a campaign or workflow that converts every possible campaign member. Keep in mind – that doesn’t mean every person in the campaign, as there will always be some members that are truly impossible to convert. Why? Things happen. People start new jobs, financial positions change, people move, etc. The list goes on. The point of optimization is to optimize for what can be controlled, and in this instance, that’s the customer journey or workflow.

Two Categories of Multichannel Campaign Optimization

  • Theoretical: This category happens before starting your campaign. It’s the last but usually the most time-consuming portion of actually building your workflow. It’s done through effective use of assumptions and historical data from similar campaigns. The steps to do this? Assign estimate conversion rates to each of your workflow components and then use them to calculate expected conversions – taking the output of one component as the input of the next. Although it’s very time consuming, it’s worth it in the end. Theoretical optimization helps you optimize both your campaign and create stronger projections for your campaign’s performance.
  • Empirical: This category happens while the campaign runs. Instead of using historical data from other campaigns, you’ll use historical data from this campaign. So, factors like audience and creative can be held constant. You’ll still go through the same process – assigning your empirical conversion rates to each of your components, and going through the calculations to more accurately predict overall campaign outcomes. Measure your component’s KPIs while simultaneously updating projections based on the changes to your workflow.

To hear from our Director of R&D, Harrison, on what else you’ll want to do, as well as what tools you can use to optimize your campaign, click on the video below. Or, if you’d like to discuss multichannel marketing optimization with one of our experts, contact us today.

What Choice is Best?

You’ve probably noticed that, within the last few years, there’s become a bit of a paper shortage in the US – to say the least. Paper has been much harder to come by – and with that, many companies are looking into alternatives as well as ways to combat the shortage. Today, we’re discussing eco-friendly paper options that, in the long-run, may not only help with the shortage, but aid our environment to positively impact the world we live in.

Why is there a Paper Shortage?

Not too long ago, we posted a blog on the paper shortage. We discussed what’s causing it, what it means for marketers and their print projects, and how we can combat it. Overall, the shortage is due to the many changes in our world that have happened over the past few years. Between the pandemic, lumber scarcity, changes in supply and demand, and a decrease in transportation, several things made the perfect storm to decrease our paper resources. Learn more by reading the full blog, here.

Myth vs. Fact of Tree Waste

Before we go into some paper options and alternatives, we wanted to bring a few statistics from ChoosePrint.org to your attention:

  • Myth: Paper is Made from Fresh-Cut Trees
  • Reality: Paper is Made Primarily from “Waste” Products

  • Myth: Print Leads to Deforestation
  • Reality: Print Promotes Trees

  • Myth: The Tree Population is Shrinking
  • Reality: More Trees and Forests Exist Today Than 20 Years Ago

Questions? Dive a bit deeper into these, here.

Why Look Into Other Options?

Right now, the world “consumes around 300 million tons of paper each year.” So, although there are many trees being planted each year, and a lot more people are focusing on the environment, to keep up with what we’re taking away, we need to stay cognizant of our paper resources and usage. No matter what we’re doing to combat the negatives of paper creation, there are still forms and instances of paper creation (for example, deforestation of tropical forests) that take away wildlife habitat and emit greenhouse gases into the environment – so it’s important to be sure you’re not contributing to these negative practices. It’s estimated that “28,000 species may become extinct in the next quarter of a century from deforestation”, and that the burning and clearing of forests “accounts for about 20% of global annual greenhouse gas emissions.”

What are My Eco-Friendly Paper Options?

Although it may be your go-to and first guess, recycled paper may not be your only or best option. Eco friendly or “alternative” paper has a “smaller carbon footprint” and less overall impact on our environment.

Overall, there are currently two kinds of eco-friendly paper options. Recycled and curated.

Recycled is made from “post-consumer waste rather than wood pulp from freshly cut trees”. This reuse of post-consumer waste reduces deforestation and keeps habitats for wildlife, plus, “recycling roughly one ton of paper reduces greenhouse gas emissions by one ton of carbon equivalent, and saves around 7,000 gallons of water.” But – and this is important – be sure to look at the percentage (which manufacturers are required to include). Several companies will only use a small percentage of recycled materials, when we really want the percentage to be as close to 100 as possible.

Curated paper is from a managed forest system – the most popular and well-known of those being FSC Certified paper. FSC Certified is Forest Stewardship Council certified, which means it was created sustainably. If you look further into this, it primarily means that the paper was created with consideration of the protection of our environment as well as ethical treatment of production workers. “So far, the FSC has certified around 174 million hectares (429 million acres) of forests worldwide.” Additionally, other certifications exist, such as Preferred by Nature, Sustainable Forestry Initiative, and PEFC.

Lastly, you can use both. What do we mean? Curated paper that is made from (at least partially) recycled materials – the best of both worlds! Look into what makes the most sense and works best for your company. If you’re not sure, the best thing you can do is reach out to others, research, and simply try to do what’s best for our world.

Want to discuss your options with us? Looking for more information or resources? Contact Strata.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

Figuring out your multichannel campaign workflow can be difficult (at first). At its core, a workflow should be a living, breathing thing, and you most likely won’t come up with the optimal flow right from the get-go, and that’s alright, you’re not really supposed to. When building a workflow, your goal should be getting to a point where you’re tweaking it throughout the campaign, not reengineering it. That said, in our most recent YouTube video of our Multichannel Marketing series, we go over best practices for creating this flow, and the ways in which you can make it work well for you and your company.

Are All Workflows the Same?

The answer’s no. Look at the construction of your workflow as an iterative process. Something you sit down with, leave, come back to, leave for another cup of coffee, come back to and test out, make calculations for, leave, come back to, leave for more coffee, etc. Go in with the expectation of optimizing it a handful of times. Remember, it’s personalized to you and your company’s goals.

Its Importance

Having the most effective campaign from the get-go is one thing, but building a workflow and truly thinking through a theory for that workflow is another. It allows you to better test and evaluate your campaign’s goals. If you begin to see a disconnect between your campaign goals and what you currently have after constructing a workflow and calculating your multichannel KPIs, you have a problem. But, the good news is that you can work to solve it before spending money, and possibly disrupting your reputation. This is one of the main reasons workflows are important to have – so you can catch any kinks before launching your campaign.

First Steps

When starting to create your workflow, there are a lot of framework options you can build upon. The video that we’re referring to in this blog is for building a ‘base’ workflow, but, for information on how to tweak your ‘final’ workflow, check out this video when you find some time.

A commonly used workflow strategy formulation starts with defining the highest and lowest levels of the marketing funnel that you want to address. You can have as many ‘funnel buckets’ as you want, and they’ll vary based on your industry and business model. Here are some basic ones that can be used:

  • Awareness
  • Consideration
  • Evaluation
  • Purchase

We recommend laying these out as lanes in a flowchart. It helps to visualize the different stages of engagement for your campaign members.

To see next steps for building your multichannel workflow, click on the video below. You’ll hear our Director of R&D, Harrison, go through best practices and tips and tricks for getting yours set up. Or, if you’d like to discuss this concept with one of our multichannel experts, contact us today.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

Creating a personally relevant multichannel campaign can be difficult without proper preparation and guidance. Luckily, in this blog, featuring our most recent YouTube video of our Multichannel Marketing series, we go over some marketing personalization statistics, how to create a personalized, cohesive, and seamlessly relevant journey across multiple channels, and ways to better know who your buyers are. 

The key to starting is to understand who your audience is and their specific buyer journey. Once you collect this data, it’s time to personalize and make sure the content you’re putting in front of them is relevant.

Map Out Your Customer Journey

When creating the perfect multichannel campaign for your audience, take a look at who your buyers really are and then work backwards to figure out how they became a customer. What high-value acquisition channels did these customers use? Which customers have strong LTV (lifetime value)? Talk to your customer service team and your customers. Once you organize and map that out, you’ll have a much easier time figuring out where the problems are, and where objections are coming from. And finally, discover where customers dropped off in the funnel. Put all of this together, and you’ll have a clear look at the journey your customers take and how you can improve your connections with them.

Establish Your Data

When we say establish your data, we’re talking way more than first names and company names. While those are important – that’s not the personalization customers are looking for these days. You’ll want to start partnering with a company (or using software) that can help you gather info like real-time, on-site behavior, online and offline conversion history, geographic location, product affinities, and device activity. All of this will help you develop a strategy that’s consistent and relevant from one channel to the next.

Ultimately, there’s no one-size-fits-all personalized experience – that’s why customers crave it so much. To see what steps are next in establishing your personalized approach, click on the video below. You’ll hear our Marketing and Social Media Coordinator, Bridget, go through best practices. Or, if you’d like to discuss this concept with one of our multichannel experts, contact us today to get your next (or maybe even your first) multichannel campaign started.