Direct mail for trade shows

Direct mail for trade shows

Direct Mail For Trade Shows Will Direct Ideal Prospects To Your Exhibit

Direct mail for trade shows in this age of all things email and social media? While some companies may roll their eyes in exasperation and argue that direct mail doesn’t work, a well-executed direct mail campaign will in fact enhance your trade show performance. A smart direct mail for trade shows marketing strategy will  increase your number of ideal exhibit attendees. Consider the following tips that can help your company produce high-quality direct mail pieces and produce better responses at your next trade show.

Make A List And Check It Twice

  • Get the right list by ensuring it is current and contains the correct target group
  • Target lists can be based on demographics, income, lifestyle, purchasing habits, and other factors
  • Remember that the more filters you choose, the better your response rate; however, you’ll pay more per name for the most targeted lists
  • Consider purchasing lists from magazine list shops, as each one has a demographic profile of its readers (such as gardening, manufacturing, or home improvement)
  • Compile a list of your current customers – this provides your company with an immediate qualified list of candidates who may attend the show, but be certain that this list is current and accurate
  • Always mail directly to a person, rather than a title, to ensure your mailing doesn’t get discarded

Market Your Message

  • Your message must be unique and interesting – why should someone visit your trade show booth? What’s in it for them?
  • Be clear, concise and creative
  • Sell the benefits of responding to your mailing, but try to keep the message personal and conversational too
  • Include your call to action by telling the prospect what you want them to do in a simple and polite manner, and do so within the first few lines of the mailing
  • Does your headline tell the story?
  • Proofread and proofread again to ensure your punctuation, spelling, grammar, and contact information are correct
  • If using a direct mail postcard, create a simple, colourful design with your logo and offer on one side, and details and call to action on the reverse
  • When reading a letter, the recipient’s eye naturally moves down the page; therefore, if you’re using a direct mail letter include a postscript (P.S.) at the bottom that reinforces your message
  • Include white space in your letter to give your readers a break, and limit the letter to one page
  • Most of us read at an eighth-grade level, so keep your language simple
  • Be personal – sign your name

Personalize The Package So You Can Pass The Gatekeeper 

  • A lot of mail is either opened or tossed by administrative staff, so it’s the more personal and interesting pieces that pass the screening test and land on the desk
  • Avoid the use of labels on envelopes; instead, print or hand-write the recipient’s name and address
  • Response rates suggest that envelopes without windows are read more often than those with

Do Your Direct Mail Homework

  • Conduct a small test-run to determine how well your direct mail campaign may work
  • Devise a method to track your number of responses at the trade show
  • Engage in combination marketing by using an additional marketing technique or two to increase your response rates; follow up on your direct mail with an email or a phone call
  • Put your direct mail efforts to the test – was your success attributed to your compelling offer, your creative presentation, strong call to action, or your effective target list?
  • Calculate your direct mail campaign cost by determining the total cost of the mailings (creative services, printing, postage and labour), and divide that number by the generated revenue from an average sale to figure out how many sales are needed to break even

Direct mail marketers like to refer to the 60-30-10 Rule. Basically, 60% of your direct mail success depends on your target list, 30% depends on your offer, and 10% depends on your creativity. So if your company wishes to increase its trade show booth attendance you’re well-advised to begin with a current, well-targeted list. Next, develop an offer that meets your prospects’ needs. And finally, pay heed to the overall quality and presentation of your direct mail in order to sidestep those meticulous mail gatekeepers.

While you might think that using direct mail for trade shows is an “old-school” way to improve your trade show results, when done right, it really works.