You just started your own business. Congratulations! Now what? It’s a brand new business that nobody knows about, and you have to somehow create exposure and excitement so people will want to buy from you. It’s challenging, but not impossible.
Every successful business in the world started where you are now. There are many things you can do to drive first-time customers to your door, but one of the most effective ways is coupons. And not the $1 off coupons you get in the Sunday newspaper, I’m talking about valuable engaging coupons on direct mail postcards.
Direct mail coupons are an extremely effective way to initiate new customers; I can tell you that from personal experience. I once received a $25 certificate to Shutterfly in the mail and thought it was too good to pass up, so I created a Shutterfly account and used it to buy a Christmas gift at a great price. Another time, someone from The Smoothie Shop was handing out coupons at my gym to promote their new location near where I live. I used it and was one of their first customers when they opened. Then, I went to a new bundt cake shop to redeem a coupon for a free cake and found that lots of people were there for the same reason.
People love saving money. Seriously. You may think shoppers only use coupons when they’re struggling financially, but everyone likes to get a good deal. I assure you Bill Gates would save money on a purchase with a coupon if he could.
Why Coupons Work
Advertising Age reports that 87% of all shoppers use coupons at least occasionally, and 60% actively look for them. Often, buyers care more about what they save than what they spend. It’s like when mom used to buy more stuff at the grocery store just because they were on sale even though we really didn’t need them.
Consumers are also more willing to go out of their way, like driving to a new location, just to take advantage of a great offer. For these reasons, coupons are a great incentive to bring in new customers to your business. Retailers of all sizes can use coupons and anticipate good results.
There are many types of coupon deals you can offer. The most common ones you see are dollar off and percentage off. Coupons are very easy to measure too; you calculate conversions by comparing the number redeemed versus the number mailed out. You can try sending out two or three different offers to see which one performs best.
Targeting Through Direct Mail
Why should your coupons be on direct mail when so much is digital now? For a new brand looking to build an audience, digital ads and emails will likely be overlooked because you haven’t developed a relationship with consumers yet. They don’t know who you are.
Direct mail works well because it’s tangible and is proven to have a higher retention rate than other methods, which is something you really want for a new business. When it’s printed, you know it’s real. And if you target them using variable data, you’ll speak to them on a personal level. You should also format it as a postcard instead of a sealed envelope so you can make an impression right off the bat when the consumer opens his/her mailbox. Plus, postcards are relatively inexpensive.
You will want to create a full-color postcard that uses both sides, has exciting visual appeal including your logo, clear text, and contact information. Make sure the offer is compelling, most people won’t respond to less than 10 percent off or having too many restrictions to get the discount. Make it easy for them to want to use the coupon. State what makes your brand special and prompt the consumers to seek more information. Give the offer an expiration date to create urgency. You may even want to include a map on the postcard with your location pinpointed.
A direct mail coupon is just the beginning. If you provide an excellent buying experience for the customers, they will come back for more.
Where to Start
Don’t know where to get started? No problem. NextPage can help you every step of the way, from the concept to the finished product. We’ll even mail it for you. Contact NextPage today and speak to an account executive about creating your business’s first direct mail campaign.
To learn more about direct mail, download our free eBook The NextPage Guide to Direct Mail Success.