Six Mistakes to Avoid in Your Postcard Campaign

Postcards are a very cost-effective and efficient way to market your business. Combine that with their ability to generate a high response rate, and you have a tremendously powerful marketing tool. It's really important, however, to avoid some of the most common mistakes people make when implementing their postcard marketing campaign.

Here's a list of the top six mistakes you should avoid in order to have a successful campaign:

1. Not targeting the best prospects

How much of a response would the Omaha Steaks company receive if they sent marketing postcards to a subscriber list of "Vegetarian Cooking?" Chances are, the results would be poor. Having the best possible mailing list is one of the most important factors of a successful postcard marketing campaign. In-house lists are best, which includes all your past and current customers. If you don't have an in-house list or want to expand your marketing reach, you can rent a list. Several companies offer the ability to rent mailing lists such as PsPrint. You can select specific criteria for you list rentals. If you are selling high-end baby items, for example, you would want your list to include households with a certain income level, within a certain distance from your store and in a specific age range. This would ensure a good return on your campaign.

2. Lack of continuity/repetition

Studies show that the average person needs to see or hear something four times before it completely registers. When you plan your postcard campaign, make sure it's not just a single mailing but an actual campaign. When someone sees your company name repeatedly, it builds credibility and familiarity. It may take a number of contacts with a customer before it leads to a sale, but the eventual increase in revenue from a committed customer usually far offsets the small cost of postcard printing.

3. Sending an unprofessional, lack-luster postcard

You want your postcard to look professional, stand out and generate a positive response. Consider sending oversized postcards, or include a personal message on the postcard. Also, bold colors and high-quality photos will attract attention and make people want to read your card.

4. Too much text/information

Brevity is the soul of wit! Keep that in mind when you develop the content for your postcard. Do not include every little detail of information. In fact, bullet points are the best way to deliver a message with postcards. Think of what step you want the reader to take and make sure you deliver enough information and enticement. You can always have more information on a landing page, in follow up communication or in a phone message. If you try to put too many messages or information on the postcard, the reader will have a hard time making out any message and will not toss your postcard right in the trash.

5. Not providing contact information

This might sound like common sense, but it's amazing how many postcards do not provide contact information in an easy-to-spot format. Provide a telephone, cell or fax number, URL to a landing page, e-mail or return address. Also, make sure you repeat your company name next to the contact information.

6. Not seeding your mailing list

Whenever you conduct a postcard campaign, make certain that you place addresses of friends, relatives and your address on the list. This will enable you to know exactly when the postcard reaches your intended audience. If you are mailing nationwide, be sure to include the addresses of friends and family across the country. If you don't receive your card in a timely manner, you can follow up with the mailing list company to determine the cause.