Mailing Tips of the Pros
Expanded & Updated May 2013
$$$ Follow these simple, proven tips to make a LOT more money in direct mail! $$$
Tip #1: Get a quality mailing list. Your list is the most important part of your mailing. Always save the “nixies” (returns) and send them back to the company for cash or stamps. Do not order from companies that only give you 5 to 10 or more free names for each nixie (no stamp or money). If their names are bad, and they usually are, then why would you want any more of them? To find a good mailing list company do the following: 1) read their literature carefully and make sure it is professional, 2) make sure the nixie guarantee is at least 50 cents per nixie… the better the nixie guarantee, the more reliable the company usually is, 3) Call the company and ask a lot of questions, and 4) Ask where they get their names (from a broker, from the internet, from in-house orders, etc.)
Tip #2: Mail only ONE offer in an envelope. Multiple offers confuse people and will reduce your response. The only exception to this rule is if your second offer is a very low cost program that helps all mailers (i.e. a stamp program or a mailing list offer). If you include a second offer, introduce it in a “PS” on your cover letter. One single offer is always best.
Tip #3: ALWAYS use a well written cover letter. A cover letter creates interest. It must be clean, professional and be sure to include your phone number. If possible, also include your email and a picture of you. This makes it more personal. Answer your phone and return all phone calls. Also, you can include a special offer that has an “expiration date” to encourage a fast response.
Tip #4: Hand addressing your envelopes will increase your response by 15 to 20% (i.e, a 2% response with labels would be 2.3% to 2.4% with hand addressed envelopes). If you are doing a mailing of 500+ it probably is not worth the extra time. You don’t need to use fancy colored envelopes. White envelopes are fine and they are cheap (about $8 for a box of 500 at Costco, Staples or Office Depot). If you are going to mail 5,000+ offers over time, consider custom printed envelopes with a special message and design on the envelope. Though more expensive, they do create interest and will increase your response.
Tip #5: Write the person’s first name by hand with a blue or green pen/marker at the top of each cover letter. This gets their attention so more people will read your letter. This tip will increase your response by about the same amount as hand addressing the envelope, and it’s quicker and easier.
Tip #6: Use large, colorful postage stamps, and brand new designs if available. Your local post office should have a good selection. Also, be sure to apply the stamp, the return address label, and the address label straight and neat! First impressions are important. If you are mailing 2,000+, Consider having a mailing house do all the work for you.
Tip #7: Know how to use “Reverse Mail” strategy. When you receive a money-making offer in the mail, you can mail that person your offer, but there are a few important tips to get maximum response: 1) hand address the envelope, 2) include a brief personal hand written note, 3) include proof of the program working well (copies of money orders, etc). Now here’s the really important part: wait 3 to 4 weeks, then mail it to them. Your response rate from reverse mailing will be much higher this way. It is best not to reverse mail people immediately because that’s what most people do and your offer will be lost in a whole bunch of other money-making offers if you reverse mail them within the first 7-10 days.
Tip #8: If you have an exclusive, special offer, you can include a “return response envelope.” You can get #9 envelopes at any office supply store, or online for about $25 for a box of 500. The #9 envelope fits perfectly inside a regular #10 envelope. Be sure to apply a label or rubber stamp with YOUR address in the middle of the response envelope. Have them printed if you will be mailing thousands.
Tip #9: Test your offer and list! Do a test mailing of 500letters to test how well your offer pulls. You must mail a minimum of 500 pieces to accurately test a list. Adjust your cover letter, your offer, or mailing list if you get little or no response. The average response for money making opportunities in mail order is one half of one percent (1 in 200 mailed). Response rates are lower than most people realize. NOW you can rate your results… Out of each 500 mailed: 0 or 1 order = poor, 2-3 orders = average, 4-5 orders = good, 6-8 orders = great, 9-10 orders = awesome, 11+ orders = response of the pros!!!
TIP #10: Always use a return address sticker on your envelopes! If you need a good inexpensive source for them you can order from DME, PO Box 366, Sandpoint, ID 83864. Prices are: 400 for $18, 800 for $29, 2000 for $52 (Available on this website.)
Tip #11: Choose your money making opportunity carefully, then get committed for the long term. Be consistent and persistent! Many people give up on a business just before they succeed (most give up within 60 days). Give it time to multiply, usually 6 to 10 months of serious, consistent effort is the minimum time required. If you are not getting the results you expect then get help from experts.
Tip #12: Know when to mail. It is best to mail your letters on Saturday, Sunday, Monday or Tuesday. Do not mail on Wednesday or Thursday. For maximum response, it is slightly better for your prospect to receive your offer on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. Also, contrary to some advice, we have found mailing throughout the month of December to be quite effective. Many people in a direct mail business do not have big holiday plans, and there is less competition in December!
Tip #13: ALWAYS send a thank you note and/or make a phone call to anyone who joins you in your business. This is so important. The more you reach out to help people, the more money you will make! This builds relationships, friendships and business contacts. Make notes of those people you like talking with and keep a record of their contact info on your phone, computer or tablet. It is especially important to keep in close touch with people and help them succeed if you are building a long-term product driven business like a stable network marketing company.
Tip #14: General Misc. Info:
Do not use blue paper for any offer….
62% of people who join a direct mail money-making program are men, and 38% are women (if you buy a mailing list and most of the names are women’s names, you have been burned)….
Opportunity post cards on average bring one-fourth to one-half as much response as a professional letter and flyer for the same opportunity (post cards are less expensive and are more duplicable as a system to promote, however the response rate is almost always less than a professional letter/offer)….
The 6 WORST states to mail to are: ND, SD, WY, NE, ME and NH. Some mailers remove all addresses from these states (this does make sense).
Copyright 2013, Direct Mail Essentials P.O. Box 366 Sandpoint, ID 83864