Boost Response From Insert Media
While it’s important to maximize the size of the insert, Feyas cautions catalogers not to exceed weight restrictions set by program owners. “Be really careful, or you’re going to pay more money for overweight inserts, or they might even reject yours because their packages are at the [weight] limit,” she warns.
Do use promotions and special offers. While most catalogers don’t initially think of using a promotion in an insert campaign, Feyas says such offers are critical to the success of such a campaign. So strong are her feelings, in fact, that she considers product announcements and simple catalog requests done as insert media as wastes of money.
Callahan notes that while free catalog inquiries once generated response, the market today is so full of offers that a promotion or premium is necessary to ensure a solid response for most catalogers. “You need to have a reason for prospects to respond to you — a premium, some bells and whistles. Give them dollars off on their first or second orders. Most of the customers acquired through insert media have pretty good lifetime values, so it’s OK to do that,” she says.
Don’t make it hard for prospects to respond. Benewicz notes the importance of providing an easy way for customers to mail, fax or phone in a response to the insert. Further, she recommends including a URL that leads to the specific offer mentioned on the insert.
Do include keycodes for easy tracking. Each method of communication should have its own keycode, says Benewicz. “Offer a premium or a free shipping discount, but only if they use the specific offer code or Web page,” she notes.
Don’t forget the extra costs. Although insert media programs are less expensive than mailing a catalog, there still are costs to consider.
Feyas relates the story of a catalog company executive who thought a high-volume insert program was producing great results, until the executive remembered to add the cost of shipping the inserts to the program owner. Several thousands of dollars in costs weren’t counted — a fact that drastically changed the program’s final analysis. While it sounds obvious, try to get the best printing and shipping costs possible for your inserts, says Feyas.