Cost is one of the single most important factors when planning for a direct mail services campaign. You probably have a specific budget number in mind and need to ensure a reasonable return on investment. Spending thousands of dollars on a marketing campaign that only generates a few customers does not give you a lot of room to maneuver. Cutting back on the number of mailings you send also cuts back on the number of responses you receive, making it a problematic choice. Instead, implement a these 5 simple strategies and cut costs, without cutting your customer conversions.
- Audit your mailing list. One of the largest wastes involved in direct mail services comes into play when you send out mailings to old or incomplete mailing lists. Even when you send out mailings in bulk, re-sending or forwarding mail to current addresses comes with a regular first class price tag. Make sure to clean and update your mailing list frequently to remove out dated addresses.
- Invite multiple vendors to bid. Different service providers focus on different types of mailings. Talk to several different service providers to ensure that you get the absolute lowest price. Building a relationship with a specific vendor helps ensure quality, but having lower bids in hand can help when negotiating a price.
- Choose cost effective materials. What you print is almost as important as what you print on when determining cost. Heavier paper or cardboard is much more expensive than a regular letter. Discuss the options with your vendor before making a final decision.
- Consider switching to digital printing. Digital printing does not have the crisp, clear imagery offered by traditional printing presses, but it does offer significant cost savings. Color printing improves conversion rates, but it can also cost more than twice as much as black and white. Digital printing helps close the gap between color and black and white printing to make it more affordable. If color printing is still out of your budget, discuss color paper options. Sometimes a brightly colored envelope or background can have the same effect as a glossy printed flier.
- Automate where possible. Bulk mailing offers large discounts on postage, helping to make direct mail services cost effective. When you presort mail down to the 5 digit zip code level, you get the maximum discount. Presorting mail in house may not be optimal unless you send out many large mailings every year, but your mail house should offer these services. The easier it is for the post office to direct your materials, the less they charge you for postage.
These are just a few of the ways you can help minimize your direct mail services costs. Cutting back on mailings only reduces your name recognition, but trimming your expenses helps you keep up with rising costs. Postage prices rise regularly, as do the costs of designing and printing mailings. Watch the pennies and you can continue to send out large bulk mailings for a reasonable price. Direct mail services still offers one of the best conversion rates of any advertising method. Keep sending out mailings and you will see a slow and steady increase in your customer base.