Can I Be Direct…? Part III

Old School Spam

You don’t like spam. Neither do I…, and neither do our potential customers. Spam is simply junk mail… electronically or otherwise. Spam annoys.

So, here is easy advice; don’t spam…, don’t annoy.

In articles you may find here and here, we spoke of receiving a direct mail marketing piece loaded with diverse ads for local small business offers.

These were big, gawdy, clashing ads that were difficult to read and had no comprehensible strategy linking the advertiser’s products or services to the buyer’s needs.

Imagine manually searching the yellow pages for what you needed if it were not indexed by any categories. You got it.

Now…, I am not saying that you can’t attract some business by throwing everything at everybody.

What I am saying, is that shouting at everyone in the hopes that your ideal customer will hear you is not the most effective marketing strategy or use of financial resources for your small business.


The key to reaching out with direct mail is the same as reaching out with any other medium.

We need to speak only with our ideal customer, in a manner they will accept, with a message that proves that we not only understand them and the challenges they face, but also offers the possibility of helping them solve those issues in some fashion.

When used as steps in a process of starting or building strong business relationships, direct mail, done well, can be very effective.

It may be used with past, present, or potential customers, and may make use of postcards, letters, packages, handwritten cards, notes, or a multitude of other creative ideas to engage your ideal customer.

It may contain valuable gifts, offers, promotions, or information that your customer will find useful. The operating words here are ‘valuable’ and ‘useful’. Free junk is still just free junk… it’s non-electronic spam, and it annoys.

Have a new service or product line? How about new payment or delivery terms? Or maybe a targeted offer with a truly substantial benefit? Use direct mail to inform your customers.

Have you appeared in or written any articles that detail a solution to a known problem of your market? Let them know with direct mail.

Have you developed contacts that you could refer as hot prospects for your potential customer’s business? Sending a handwritten note to the CEO on Monday morning would be a great idea.

How about sending one on the first Monday of each month in 2009…? I promise they won’t consider it spam.


So let’s look at some ideas on targeting and designing your direct mail… tomorrow. Until then, I look forward to hearing from you.



Use your marketing budget wisely.

Don’t allow your direct mail to be viewed as spam. Be valuable.

What goes around, comes around… what you sow, you reap…positively or negatively. Be willing to give if you want to get.



How would you feel if a potential vendor took the time to research, connect with, and then refer an ideal prospect to you?

How did you use direct mail last week to connect with and engage your ideal customers?

Monday’s coming, how will you use it next week?


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2 thoughts on “Can I Be Direct…? Part III

  1. You know, I have to tell you, I really enjoy this blog and the insight from everyone who participates. I find it to be refreshing and very informative. I wish there were more blogs like it. Anyway, I felt it was about time I posted, I

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