Innovation is a hot topic these days. In fact, Politico Magazine has coined it the buzzword of 2016, and everyone from the media, to political candidates, are jumping on the bandwagon. Although, the word innovation is not new to the business world, it is quickly gaining attention as markets become more competitive.
So, exactly what is innovation? BusinessDictionary.com defines innovation as “the process of translating an idea or invention into a good or service that creates value for which customers will pay.” In other words, simply creating a new product or service is not enough. It must also create value that your customers are willing to pay for.
Peter Drucker, known as the founder of modern management, stated “Because the purpose of business is to create a customer, the business enterprise has two–and only two–basic functions: marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs. Marketing is the distinguishing, unique function of the business.”
The difference between marketing and selling is still debated in every corner of the business world. It is often said that selling focuses on the needs of the seller, and marketing focuses on the needs of the buyer. In fact, Drucker felt that marketing should render selling unnecessary. Whether you agree or disagree, one thing is certain – effective marketing requires getting to know and understand your customer.
Marketing is the HOW – Direct mail is the METHOD
If marketing is how you create and keep customers, then direct mail is one of the most effective methods for doing so. However, for direct mail to be innovative it must have more than just flashy graphics and creative offers. Here are just a few ways to create truly innovative direct mail pieces:
- Influence and Persuasion
Creating a persuasive direct mail piece is about understanding how your prospects think and crafting a message that entices them to take action. Sounds simple, right? It is… if you have the information to guide you through the process of getting your prospect to say yes. So, where do you get the information? Science! Scientific research into human behavior is at the core of persuasive marketing. Applying the principles of influence and persuasion to your direct mail pieces is an innovative way to increase your response rates and maximize your ROI. For more information on creating persuasive mail pieces, take a look at our infographic – 12 Tips to Create Persuasive Direct Mail Pieces.
- 80/20 Principle
An innovative way to build your list, is to use the 80/20 principle. As you know, 80% of your customer-base delivers you only 20% of your company’s profits. And the opposite is also true, 20% of your clients bring in 80% of your organization’s earnings. So how does this relate to creating a mailing list? It’s simple. When building the perfect list, you must take into account the core attributes of the 20% of your customers who make up 80% of your business. Check out our blog post, Ask Questions to Build the Perfect List, to learn how to use the 80/20 principle to build your list.
Augmented Reality (AR) is an exciting and innovative way to incorporate digital technology with direct mail and boost response rates by 33%! AR provides marketers the ability to give their prospects and customers a complete interactive experience in the palm of their hand. AR allows anyone with a smartphone or tablet to transform a 2D printed mail piece into a 3D experience by simply downloading an app and pointing their camera at the mail piece. It gives consumers a personalized experience that expands beyond the limited borders of a printed mail piece. In addition, it draws consumers in, engages them, and gives them a reason to hold onto the mail piece. For more specifics on AR and how it can make your direct mail a truly interactive experience, read Direct Mail Goes Digital with Augmented Reality.
Are you ready to make your direct mail innovative? Allegiant Marketing Group has the skills and expertise to help you build an innovative direct mail campaign that delivers exceptional results. Give us a call today at 800-648-3107 or fill out a short contact form and we’ll be in touch soon!