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Integrate Your Direct Mail and Social Media Efforts

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There is no doubt that social networks are continuing to grow in popularity among all age groups. Recent statistics from Pew Internet & American Life Project indicated that 65% of online adults use social networking sites.  Marketers should continue to devote resources into using that channel to reach customers and prospects. However, this can also create an opportunity for your mail and print channels.

Direct mail and social networking efforts can both be improved when they are integrated together. Here are 5 ideas to make that integration happen:

Put the Social Media Badge on your Direct Mailer
Alright, this one is probably the easiest and most obvious of the bunch. If you’ve invested the time in creating and managing social media profiles for your company, you need to make sure that people know about them. Sure, some might find about them via links that you’ve added to your corporate website or via their own searches.

But to ensure that everyone knows, try adding the “badge” of social media icons to your direct mail pieces.

Simply seeing the “Facebook” or “Twitter” logo on your postcard may help your target audience become aware that your company is sharing information via those channels too.

Post Links to Your Landing Page on Social Media Sites
Let’s say that you’ve created a landing page that is filled with compelling information and a form that asks the perfect amount of questions. Will people only get to that page if they receive a direct mailer that contains a personalized URL?

Give this a try – in addition to the personalized landing pages, create versions that will be available to the general public. Then, post links to the general version of the landing page on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media sites that your audience uses.

Throughout the campaign, measure how people are getting to your page. Is it via the PURL on the direct mailer? Or via Twitter or Facebook? These types of reports may help you to better invest your resources in future campaigns when it comes to segments of your audience.

Make the Mailer Interactive with a QR Code
Companies of all sizes and varieties are creating videos with their Flip cameras and smart phones and uploading them to YouTube. Those videos can certainly help to spread your company’s message and to increase your SEO efforts.

But online video can also be re-purposed to make a direct mail piece interactive.

Simply create a QR Code that points directly to the YouTube video or to a mobile-optimized site that provides a link to the video. Place the QR Code on the direct mailer with a call-to-action, and then watch how your growing mobile audience responds.

Enable Landing Page Visitors to Easily Share the Link with Others
This might be the one idea where you can truly start to see growth in the overall success of your campaigns. When someone visits your landing page, make it easy for them to share a link to your content on their social media profiles.

This could be via a simple “Tweet This” button for Twitter, a “Like” button for Facebook, or some other sort of social media plug-in.

If your content is truly helpful and you make it easy for people to share it, your audience will grow with the help of others.

Drive People to Your Social Media Sites from the Thank You page
Let’s say that someone responds to the call-to-action on your direct mailer, types in their PURL, and fills out your response form. What do you then? Do you simply say Thank You?

Well, you could do that and then follow-up with them later. Or, you could try to further the engagement at that moment.

Try integrating your social media profiles into your Thank You page. This could mean simply putting icons that link to your social media pages. It could also mean embedding a YouTube video onto the page as well. Since the person has already shown interest in your company, perhaps they’d be more than willing to take a few minutes and learn a bit more about who you are and what you can do for them.

These are just a few ideas for integrating direct mail with social media. I hope that they help improve the success of your marketing and educational efforts.

Enhance User Experience with Landing Pages

When designing and building a landing page, we typically have a specific purpose in mind. For example, let’s say that we have a goal of registering 100 people for an Open House event. We may promote it through direct mail, emails, and a banner ad. All of those medias will point to a landing page.

When people hit it, we certainly want them to be able to easily figure out how they can register for the event. We may take steps to ensure that there are not too many distractions on the response form. We may limit how many fields we require, or how many questions we ask of people. These types of decisions can have a positive effect on the percentage of people that do respond to our

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offer.

However, once someone clicks the Submit button, we can take a slightly different approach. Many times, we may be tempted to simply put up a “Thank You” message and call it good. If so, there is a chance that we are losing out on an

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opportunity to capitalize on an interested audience.

If we only say “Thank you”, then we have created a dead end. We may have accomplished our specific goal, but we are pretty much guaranteeing that they are going to close the browser or go visit another website. However, by using that Thank You page as a way to further communicate and engage the responder, we may find greater success.

Here are a few possible ideas for how to “extend” a user’s experience with a landing page:

  • Put a link to your corporate website, and a compelling reason to visit it
  • Embed a YouTube video that is associated with your company
  • Link to your social media sites (add the social badge, or simply promote one of them with a big logo and reason to click: “‘Like’ our Facebook page”)
  • Encourage people to share what they just did on their social media pages (i.e. “Tweet This: I just RSVP’d for ABC Company’s Open House on the 23rd”)
  • Invite them to subscribe to your newsletter
  • Are you selling something? Put a link to it.
  • Deliver a personalized experience — based on how they responded, display a custom message (in the form of text, pictures, or video)

These are just a few possible ideas.

Sure, not everyone will click on the links that we provide on our Thank You pages. But we will never regret putting forth an effort to extend someone’s engagement with our brand.

(If you’ve had success with extending your landing pages, please feel free to leave a comment on this post.)