Helping Mailers Make It
Distributors who can offer creative tips to end-users have a competitive advantage. That being said, internationally known direct marketing consultant and copywriter Lee Marc Stein noted one of the biggest obstacles mailers face today is TDD—Time Deficit Disorder. Prospects and customers simply don’t have time to read all of the mail and e-mails they receive. And the problem is only getting worse, as corporations continue to downsize, leaving those remaining on staff with more burdens and less time, while employees in small businesses have always contended with time pressures.
Stein offered seven recommendations for overcoming TDD and boosting response rates:
1. Convince prospects/customers it’s worth their time to open the direct mail package. You can’t begin to sell products or services until you do. If necessary, resort to trickery—such as printing “official” on the envelopes—to accomplish your task.
2. Layer the information in your package. TDD sufferers should get the essence of the product’s benefits and your offer from the Johnson box (a box commonly found at the top of a direct mail letter which contains the key message of the letter) and not have to read further. An alternative is running five or six bullets down the right side of the letter. Buck slips are another great place to summarize benefits and offers. When including a brochure, keep a rein on how much copy it contains—in most applications today, less is more.
3. Make it easy for impulse responders. Combine frequent calls-to-action, multiple ways to respond and strong guarantees. There are more prospects than you know thinking: “I don’t have time to read about this, but I’d like to try it.”
4. Assure prospects the process for responding is fast and easy. When it was launched, GEICO’s “15 minutes to save 15 percent or more” was appealing. Today, few people have 15 minutes to respond or place orders. It needs to be faster. You have to assure people it is, and then back up your promise.
Related story: Stay on Message with Mailers