“Of course it’s much easier to sit around asking if any marketing is working than it is to go out there and start marketing your business using multiple tactics.”
But there are people out there like “gmstang” from Contractor Talk who go out there and get things done. Check out this thread about a marketing action that has been working in this market.
In case you’re not already familiar, ContractorTalk.com is an unparalleled resource of construction business advice. (Maybe get a little humor in the mix as well. Which in my opinion, is an absolute necessity!)
Cliff notes: Send a hand addressed, targeted mailer that focuses on solving a problem for your prospect. It’s cheap, easily testable, and virtually risk free. Why not try it?
Pass it along: If you know someone who could use help with website promotion and online marketing, feel free to send them a link to this page, or link to it on your own website.
When you think about construction marketing strategy, it won’t be long until you start thinking about sending out a mailer.
Of course, you can always spend the big bucks and hire a company that specializes in direct mail to build your direct mail piece, get you a list, stuff the envelopes and send it out. But this post is designed to help you do it yourself in-house, and save some serious cash.
Increase Response, and Save Money
I’m going to talk about a few tips and techniques you can use, as a construction company, to get a higher response from your direct mail pieces, and maybe save you a little money as well.
1. The List
- Your mailing list is absolutely the most important factor of your mailer. Bad list = no sales.
- Start by focusing on the neighborhoods where your best past clients live. That’s a good start.
- Drive the neighborhood you plan to mail to. What do the houses look like? Single family, or rentals? Upscale, or unkempt? In other words: is the neighborhood full of households that match your typical “best client?” If not, move on.
- Once you’ve narrowed your search to the right neighborhoods, use your local government’s online data sources to compile a list of names and addresses to mail to. You can refine your search by conditions such as recent move-ins, higher selling price, age of homeowner, and other important demographics. Match your search to the demographics of your best past clients.
2. The Presentation
- The envelope can make or break your mailer. The key is to make your piece look as personal as possible.
- If you are sending out a few hundred pieces, you can often afford to have your mailer hand addressed. Have someone on your staff do it. You might be surprised how much a personal touch like that will increase your “open rate.” More opens = more sales.
- Using some sort of “teaser copy” on the envelope can really increase your open rate as well. I’ve used red magic marker with a personal note, and it got me a huge response rate. The key is to target the teaser to match your prospects motivation and mindset.
3. The Words You Use (Copy)
- Your words are your “copy.” And copy can make all the difference.
- Your headline is the most important part of your copy. Lots of people never read past the headline. Make it relevant, targeted, and interesting. Your goal is to entice your prospect to read the rest of your mailer.
- A common mistake is to waste space talking about your business and what you can do. Don’t do this. Talk about the prospects problems and concerns, and how your business can solve these problems and ease these concerns.
- Use the “P.S.” The P.S. is the 2nd most read part of a letter after the headline. Put your call to action in your P.S.
4. The Offer
- Your offer is how you connect the value you can provide with the already present need of the prospect.
- I’ve written a ton about how to craft a great offer. You can read more here.
5. The Call to Action
- A great call to action will allow your reader to know what he or she should do next. You must have a call to action to get a great response rate.
6. The Conversion
- Track your conversion rates. You want to know how many calls you got per envelope sent. Also, sales made. Convert these numbers to dollars, and you have your future formula for success.
- The easiest way to implement telephone tracking is to train your gatekeepers to always ask how the caller found your business. Then have them write it down. Those numbers will tell you your response rate.
- If you’re using your website, this stuff can be tracked with almost no effort.
Direct mail can be an amazingly effective tool for a construction company if you do it right. Done wrong, you might not get a single solitary phone call.
Follow these simple rules, and you’re on your way to direct mail success.
Don’t forget to share: If you enjoyed this post, feel free to share it with a friend who might not see it otherwise. Or you can always just click on your favorite social bookmarking site in the tab below.