What is in this article?:
- Three tips for effective postcard marketing campaigns
- Determine design, mailing list
It’s the digital era for restaurants, but at least one old-fashioned marketing tool never goes out of style.
Determine design, mailing list
You need a card that cuts through the noise and communicates your message to prospective diners immediately and clearly. There are ten elements that make up a fully effective direct mail postcards design. They are:
1. Clear headline
2. Supporting graphic
3. Color that pops
4. Intriguing sub-headings on the back that lead into benefits
6. Enticing offer
7. Restaurant name and logo
8. Call to action and/or expiration date for the offer
9. Contact information – website, map, phone number
10. Return address
Elements 1, 2, and 3 are how you get attention and translate that attention into a decision to read more of the card. If these elements fail to grab attention and generate interest, your card is a lost cause.
Elements 4, 5, and 6 are where you convince the reader to take action. The sub-headings pull the reader into the body copy (which needs to be chock-full of customer-related benefits). Then you seal the deal with an offer they can’t refuse.
Elements 7-10 give your future customer the information he/she needs to respond. Note that number 8, the call to action, is vitally important. Believe it or not, most people won’t think to take action if you don’t ask them to. They simply have too much going on to take the initiative.
The final, crucial aspect of the Big Three is your mailing list. A good mailing list will turn a mediocre card into a superstar customer creation deice. A bad list will take the perfect postcard design and turn it into a trashcan liner. The reason is that the list defines the type of person who receives your ad. Putting an ad in front of the right sets of eyes is even more important than the ad itself.
In order to get the perfect mailing list, you need to understand who your “ideal prospect” is. Do you cater to an elderly crowd? Or maybe families with young children? Are you an edgy hangout for teenaged rockers? Whatever your ideal target market is, those are the people whose names should be on your list. The specificity of the lists you can obtain is astonishing, too. Families with two children under 10 that live within 20 miles of your location? No problem. Twenty-somethings that have signed up for alternative music mailing lists? No sweat. But you need to know who you are looking for.
Specifically for restaurants, I have seen huge success with lists that are compiled monthly based on those in your area who have a birthday that month. They are called birthday lists. (Original, huh?). The restaurateurs I have worked with have seen amazing success by mailing out special birthday offers to these lists. The cards get redeemed at very high rates, and nobody eats alone on their birthday!
As you know, once you get a new visitor into your restaurant, the rest of the experience will decide whether they come back or not! You want them back, so giving them an incredible birthday experience is crucial. One time, I responded to a birthday promotion and took my husband along to celebrate. The restaurant was really on top of the promotion. When we arrived and checked in, we were each brought a complimentary glass of champagne. What a GREAT first impression! Needless to say, the money they “lost” giving a free dinner to the birthday girl, they made up in spades every time we came back!
So if you want to give your marketing a boost, just nail the Big Three. Postcards are proven to work. I have seen it over and over again for 55,000+ businesses. They work, and this is how to make them work for you. Now, go make 2013 your most profitable year yet!
Joy Gendusa is the founder and CEO of direct mail marketing firm PostcardMania. Contact her at email@example.com or 800-628-1804.