The One-Size Approach Is Not a Strategy

November 21, 2019

Did your friend mail a direct mail piece that got impressive results? You've seen their sales uptick, and you want some of that success. You somehow managed to snag a copy of one of the mail pieces, and now you think you've got the solution to getting more business. WRONG. 

Should I repeat it? WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. STILL WRONG. 

A common mistake folks make in this scenario is to take a piece they have, then bring it to their local ad agency, and ask them to reproduce it. Doing so will not result in the desired impact, and it will only result in a waste of both time and money. Why? 

There are many reasons why taking something that worked for someone else won't work for you. So many are the reasons that it requires a full analysis and breakdown. 


Is there your friends' audience the same as yours? It probably isn't. The message that resonated with one audience isn't going to work too well for a different audience. Imagine using the same advertisement to attract an 80-year old grandma to your product and a 12-year old kid. 

Right off the bat, sending a message that doesn't resonate with your audience is a waste of money and a sure way to have your marketing flop. 

Direct Mail Campaign

A one-piece, direct mail campaign isn't likely going to result in a massive uptick of sales, but a direct mail campaign will. That probably means that your friends did not only send one piece and get the results they did. For a direct mail piece to be effective, you'd have to understand the strategy behind the campaign and all that went into it. It might have been a strategized four-piece campaign that sought to introduce various things, and by the fourth mail piece, people were encouraged to take action. By only doing one part of a strategy built for someone else, you can't expect any results. 


Another thing to take into consideration is how well-known your friend's brand is. If they've invested a lot of money in making their brand recognizable in the local community, they've already got a leg up when it comes to marketing. Building a brand is no easy feat, but the benefits are insurmountable. If your brand looks amateurish and you have not invested a lot of time into gaining recognition for it, your marketing isn't going to perform as well as someone who has spent the time and money. 


How do you talk to your clients? Perhaps you use a very professional and knowledgeable tone, and your friend uses an amicable and relaxed attitude with his or her audience. Again, because your audience is likely different, you won't communicate with them in the same way. If your voice does not reflect who you are, it could be offputting to your audience. 

Whole Marketing Strategy 

So you've seen a direct mail piece, but have you seen everything else that might be running? Does your friend have a digital component that goes along with their direct mail campaign? Or an email? The reality is that unless you ask, you won't know what other tactics were part of the marketing campaign. The direct mail piece might have been one out of ten touchpoints belonging to the executed marketing campaign. The best marketing isn't just one-pronged, excellent marketing strategies and campaigns leverage different media and make use of frequency. 


Do you know how frequently your friend markets to their target audience? Maybe they send a weekly email, monthly direct mail piece, and communicate actively with their audience on social media. If you haven't marketed in years, you can't expect the same results from one mail piece. 


When it comes to marketing, timing can make a massive difference in the success of a campaign. To get the right timing, it requires proper planning and understanding of the intended audience. Advertising for winter gear in the middle of summer isn't likely to have the desired results, no more than selling Halloween costumes during Christmas. Each industry has to plan according to the product and service they are offering and make sure they execute their marketing appropriately.  

Ultimately there are a lot of factors that go into the success of a marketing campaign, which is why it requires proper planning. Therefore, if you see that something is working for someone else, don't just aim to copy it and think that it will be enough. A marketing strategy requires proper research, planning, and execution. 

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