A logical approach to planning your direct marketing campaign will offer serious rewards and is a necessity. In the following approach, the first step is to consider your company, its objectives and also who the campaign is likely to target.
Your BusinessIt may sound strange when you are considering sending out communications to hundreds if not thousands of people, but the first stage of any marketing is to look inwards, studying your own business. This process should include focussing on the USPs of your business, identifying how your brand is perceived in the wider world and also, if the direct marketing is focussed towards a single product or service, objectively highlighting its selling points.
Your ObjectivesGetting the objectives right for your marketing campaign is a fundamental aspect of planning. A misconceived campaign will fail, equally, a campaign with a focus that is too broad, is unlikely to provide the feedback you require.
Direct marketing campaigns can be focussed towards increasing the awareness of your brand, opening relationship opportunities with potential customers or delivering messages to existing customers in order to foster better relationships.
Additionally, you may be using the campaign to generate leads or simply to stimulate the market. Ultimately whatever the objectives are, the important point is to have predefined objectives that are relevant and will deliver added benefit.
Your Target AudienceBy knowing the objectives you can then move on to deciding who to target. Whether the campaign is B2B or B2C this stage requires you to make the most of the data at your disposal, using this insight to develop target profiles, or “look-a- like” profiles for your marketing. If your targeting is executed effectively, you are giving your campaign material the best chances of success by ensuring it is placed into the hands of people that are the most statistically likely to respond.
This first element in your planning is about setting the foundations for your direct marketing campaign. Look out for future posts studying the other stages in the planning process including, Managing your Campaign Database, Getting the Campaign Message Right, Planning how to Handle the Campaign Responses and How to Learn From your Campaigns.