9 Tips for Mailing Your Online Buyers the Right Offer at the Right Time
These days, most B-to-B catalogers have a good handle on just how many new customers they’re acquiring through their online marketing efforts. With matchback and allocation systems in place, most can determine the results of all their integrated online efforts vs. their offline efforts. This is necessary to allocate sales to the proper marketing effort.
The challenges arise when deciding what to mail buyers who have chosen to do business with you online. A percentage of such buyers will gladly tell you what they want if you ask them, but not all will. You could just mail everyone everything. But that’s likely to offend buyers who have deliberately chosen to do business with you online. So, what do you do?
Here are nine tips to help clear up the picture. Of course, not every one will work for every business or product line, so pick and choose what might work best for you.
1. Allow everyone on your housefile the opportunity to set or update their preferences and/or profiles. Ask them what form and frequency of communication they prefer. Position your request as a service. For example, “Help us communicate efficiently, effectively and environmentally.”
2. Assume those customers who found you online would like to communicate and order through that channel. So, if you need to mail them at all, consider mailing postcards, miniature catalogs or some other format with the intent of driving them back online for more information and to complete an order. Ideally, it would be a mail piece that’s less expensive than your full-line catalog.
3. Test mailing a full-line catalog to a segment of online customers, and track the results. Always make it easy for consumers to tell you they don’t want a print catalog. This test helps confirm their stated preferences but isn’t final.