The Power of Inserts (914 words)
You also can take advantage of other marketers'
insert programs to prospect for new customers for your catalog. Insert advertising can generate inquiries and orders, and it may drive traffic to your Web site. Yet many of today's catalogers prospect simply by renting customer lists. Unfortunately, the cost of renting names, creating a direct mail piece and paying for postage may be four times the cost of creating and placing inserts. Therefore, now may be a good time to test prospecting via inserts.
How the Process Works
The insertion process takes place in your catalog company's distribution center (DC). Or you can contract a letter shop to receive, collate and then deliver the collated inserts to the DC. Carefully tracking the insert from delivery to distribution offers critical information such as placement results, and allows the mailer to read and record the results for each insert program.
The DC's cooperation is a key part of any insert program's success. DC personnel are responsible for putting the inserts into outgoing packages or insert vehicles. Many catalogers collate a group of inserts either into an envelope or nest them into product flyers, mini catalogs or full product catalogs (see examples on this page).
The responsibility for controlling the program is on the insert-program owner from the moment he or she accepts delivery of the inserts. Then it's up to the insert owner to verify the quantity, check key codes and distribute the inserts according to the order.
Logging the status of an insertion job and reporting the progress to the insert manager is the next step. The manager in turn keeps the broker and mailer informed. This allows the mailer to track responses at the appropriate time.
While no cataloger can guarantee timely insertion, it's important to communicate the progress of the insert job at each juncture. This allows mailers to track results correctly. A mailer should be notified if a delay in distribution occurs.