As the name suggests, direct response marketing is designed to elicit an immediate response from the consumer. It is an effective type of advertising by which you can capture customer data and measure the responses in order to be able to strategically tailor your future marketing campaign.
Direct response strategies are used in both digital marketing, including ads on search engines and social media and signing up to newsletters on a website, and traditional media, such as TV commercials, radio spots, billboards and coupons in print ads.
Unlike branding, it is not simply about getting your name out there and cold prospecting; it is targeting, building and nurturing a direct relationship with each person in your potential client base. This method translates into a far higher ROI.
Direct Response Media is one of the only agencies to measure response from TV advertising
The most prominent type of direct response advertising that springs to mind are direct response TV commercials. These As Seen on TV ads offer a tried and tested method of provoking an instant need to buy. They capitalise on people's deepest needs with limited-time only offers and a repeat message urging customers to 'call now!'
We are quite unique at Direct Response Media, as we are one of only a handful of agencies that measures response from TV advertising, in addition to radio advertising and online campaigns.
A strong call to action will generate instant responses
Direct response advertising features a call to action, which incites a strong urge in the customer to respond instantly, out of fear of missing out on a short-time offer before it is too late. The response could involve clicking on a link, signing up to an email list, or even purchasing the product then and there by phoning a number. It is easy to measure the number of responses this way and by asking customers to fill in personal details, you can also gather a lot of important information to further inform your marketing campaign.
The urgency inherent in direct response marketing enables immediate sales, so it is a fantastic way to build your revenue. This is what makes this type of advertising the best choice when businesses are starting out.
You can target your advertising using social media, to appeal to the audience demographics that you are trying to attract, by advertising on pages where the groups with the interests that you are targeting would be searching and then tracking when people click on your link. This is called prospecting.
Retargeting is a must!
Retargeting is a method that places a cookie in the browser of everyone who visits your website. If they leave your website without making a purchase, you can entice them back when an ad pops up to advertise your product or service when they are looking at another website. This not only keeps your brand at the top of their minds, it also prompt them to return to your website to complete their customer journey.
When potential customers sign up to an email list or newsletter, you have just been granted access to email them more detailed information in the form of a newsletter with a specific offer such as a free trial or a one-time only discount for new customers. The deadline to your offer means that they need to act now or miss out. In addition, you can track the fact that the customer has opened your email by measuring open rates and the number of people who click on a link in your email by measuring click through rates. You can then use the data that you have collected to measure conversion rates by dividing the number of people who clicked on the ad with the number of people that actually followed through to make a purchase.
Use direct response marketing on each stage of the customer journey
Customers are not always ready to purchase immediately. Your call to action can develop from the customer clicking on a link, to signing up to receive more information, to joining your newsletter, to starting a free trial, through to making a purchase. By using this multi-stage method, you are provoking a measurable response each time, whilst also nurturing a relationship that is developing into a trusting customer as they embark on their customer journey with you. This continued marketing strategy enables those customers that wouldn't initially respond to become more and more tempted by your increasingly tantalising offers each time, until they can no longer resist the deal because they would feel that they would be losing out if they did.
Personalisation is key when it comes to increasing response rates. Even simply starting your newsletter with, 'Dear first name' has proven to significantly increase click through rates. Canon Solutions America reported a 135% increase in response rates when adding someone's name to a direct mail campaign. The more personal the information that you can capture on your customers, the more effectively you can individually tailor your advertising campaign to appeal to them directly. RCI Financial Services boosted their response rate by 500% by including each customer's name, car make and hometown in their direct mail advertisements which incentivised these consumers to open an online finance account.
Don't stop with your direct response marketing campaign after you have made that initial sale. Continue to follow up with content after the initial buy to ensure repeat purchase. Offering continued discounts and offers if they sign up to a subscription ensures continued service which will develop into long-term customers.
Customer referral programs are a fantastic way to multiply your customer base. By offering a compelling incentive in the form of a financial reward or discount for your customers each time they refer a friend, their temptation to gain will prompt them to bring in more customers for you. They are essentially providing you with free marketing! Word of mouth has been found to be the most powerful marketing tool of all. Nielsen statistics show that 85% of respondents in their 2015 Global Trust in Advertising survey trusted recommendations from people they know over any other type of advertising. Direct response marketing offers you the best opportunity to capitalise on this golden nugget of information.
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