Why customize your ink-jet messages? People read their ink-jet messages because the message has their name and address. Catalog buyers are also trained to look for promotional offers in the message portion of their ink-jet address. Ink-jet personalization is the poor man’s “version change” for your catalog.
You can increase response to ink-jet messaging by engaging the reader with their name, and a customized offer. Simply adding the person’s name as part of the ink-jet message, even if you do nothing more than welcome them to the catalog will boost response. People love to see their name in print and will at least read the message. Using color in your ink-jet message can also improve your results.
These six techniques are proven to lift response using ink-jet messages:
- Promotional offers are the best way to lift response. Give customers a promotional code to enter to claim a discount rather than giving everyone a discount. You’ll find that half the buyers don’t use the promotions, so you’ll shelter your bottom line by not giving away discounts unnecessarily.
- You can change offers easily based on buyers, prospects or the RFM segments of your mailing. Even more powerful is segmenting your offer based on the brands or product categories purchased.
- Give deep promotions to prospects and measure whether it’s more profitable to acquire customers this way. You don’t have to lift response much to pay for the promotion.
- You should have an expiration date to your ink-jet promotion, but let offers run for six weeks or longer so you don’t cut of the catalog’s response tail.
- Consider ink-jetting “buy or die” offers to older segments of your house file, such as “order or this will be your last catalog!”
- You can use ink-jet messaging to direct customers to your Website. For instance, you may want to promote Web-only overstocks and closeouts.
Jim Coogan Is president of Sante Fe, NM-based Catalog Marketing Economics