Indulge me for a moment and think of yourself running a busy kitchen. Business couldn’t be better; bookings are up, in fact you now have a waiting list for tables. You have to bring in a new chef to cope with the extra workload.
On Wednesday evening he arrives ready and raring to go. But, he doesn’t take the time to discuss with you how the kitchen works. Instead, he heads off and does his own thing.
The result is TOTAL CHAOS!
The ingredients for successful direct marketing
In the world of the freelance copywriter there is a recipe that is regularly used to create great direct mail that works.
- A great list
- An amazing offer
- Brilliant copy
As a copywriter, the first two items in the list are usually out of your control, but that isn’t an excuse. When dealing with direct mail it’s essential to be part of the whole process. Get to know what the campaign is for, why it is being done, who they are targeting and what they are hoping to achieve at the end of it.
Where is the list coming from? If it’s bought in or old it is unlikely to be targeting the right people and the campaign will probably fail. Whereas if it is an in-house list, it stands a better chance of success.
If the offer isn’t particularly eye catching it will fail. Don’t forget you are asking people to part with cash – just because you think it’s a great offer doesn’t mean they will. Put yourself in their shoes; what would they perceive as a great offer?
And when it comes to the copy, if the list and offer are poor, you can write the best copy in the history of man and it won’t work.
Put in your all or it will go Pete Tong
At the end of the day, if you as a copywriter don’t have some sort of input into the whole process you are running the risk of the campaign failing. You can’t make your client do what you want, but you can at least put your point forward.
If you want to maximise the chances of it working, find out about the list, work with the marketing team and write the best copy you’ve ever written.
There are no guarantees – there are a lot of factors that can throw a spanner in the works (tone, target audience, timing, world events, how it was sent etc.).
If you are thinking of hiring a freelance copywriter for your campaign remember to treat them as an extension of your team. They have a great deal of experience so use it to give your campaign the edge.