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Bring back the lowly postcard!

Itís more intrusive than an unexpected house guest and more irritating than a car alarm that wonít shut off! Iím talking about internet spamÖ you know, all those unwanted messages from someone in Nigeria, begging you for money or the myriad of offers guaranteeing to enlarge. . . well, you know!

Yes, today internet spam has become one of the most-hated things in our lives. And, in spite of my filters and blockers, some still gets through and Iím forever hitting the delete key. In fact AOL, alone, recently told the Washington Post it blocks more than 780 million spams daily and it canít get them all. Thatís 100 million more messages than it actually delivers! Spam now accounts for a reported 30% of all email and itís growing rapidly. The result is electronic marketing has some serious problems today. Similarly, studies indicate consumers are increasingly rejecting what they view as intrusive Internet advertising techniques.

Now Iím not suggesting there arenít good uses for electronic marketing. There are. For example, every dealer should have a good Website. But the highly touted e-newsletters and e-mails arenít necessarily getting the message to the customers. Thatís why thereís a business migration back to good old, reliable direct mail. And whatís the best read direct mail piece today?† A postcard! Coincidentally, itís also the cheapest printed promotional piece you can produce.

Letís face it – no one throws away a postcard without at least looking at both sides. Moreover, everyone still takes the regular mail seriously. Itís still compelling. We wait for the mail to arrive. We complain if itís late. When thereís no delivery on Holidays, we feel like somethingís missing! When we get home, the first thing we still do is go through the mail. Even at the office, we usually stop whatever weíre doing when the mail arrives. Admit it or not, mail is still a priority in our lives. Therefore, it remains a viable ad tool for us.

So at a time when weíre all competing harder than ever to get even the simplest of messages across to customers and prospects, itís a great time to fall back and consider using the simple, inexpensive and compelling postcard.


3 comments on “Bring back the lowly postcard!

  1. Richard Shane

    Excellent point; the impact of highly targeted and effectively designed offline direct marketing is why Treasure Chest participants have repeated every year for the past ten years. Boat builders generated 1,000-2,000 offline qualified leads and also see a signficant, sustained spike in site activity. Direct mail can act as a search engine with many additional values, too.

  2. Captain Glen D. Smith

    The Post card “This Winterization and Storage season” resulted in a 15 to 20% increase in customers for our boat store. I also feel it also helped increase confidence and good will among our customer base. We used it to Inform them about the “Fuel situation” with regard to Ethanol. Sold a bunch of Fuel Water Separators. So…………………. for us the post card mailing has been well worth the effort.

    And for Sales? Yes we use the post card But I not going to share what we do because some of my competitors may be reading and I do not want to give up one of our advantages. We grew again last year to capacity, 89 new boat sales out of our little boat store “Little” and the post card played a part.

  3. Grant Westerson

    Right on point, Norm! The postcard is worth its weight in stamps. We have used it successfully and frequently to remind people of impending dates and events, special meetings, and new opportunities. Search the net and you can find some good deals on four-color larger postcards that don’t cost more than a first class letter, but you’re correct, the cards get read before they are filed! Your message will get through.

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