Beat or Meet or Your Sales Forecasts by Year’s End, Part 2: The Print Channel
Last week I offered six ways to use low-cost e-mail to increase your sales; the goal being to help those of you (41 percent) who were behind their 2007 sales forecasts according to the reader poll on the CatalogSuccess.com homepage. This week, I’ll focus on print catalog-related tips to increase your revenue in the last quarter of 2007.
* Add an extra catalog to your mail schedule. Take a look at your customer file and sort it by recency/frequency/monetary (RFM) value. Are there RFM cells that are highly profitable every time you mail? These profitable RFM segments (aka your best customers) likely can handle another mailing before year’s end. Simply design another catalog cover or a four-page wrap, and print an extra catalog with your next printing. Find a slot in your mail schedule where the extra catalog drop will make sense and mail it.
Another way to accomplish the same task is to print extra catalogs and have your printer affix a dot whack with a special offer to the cover. Then remail this catalog to the same RFM segments as described above. Your best customers will appreciate the extra catalog. And depending on how this works for you, you may want to look at mailing more drops next year, too.
You probably have been undermailing your customers. Hint: Leave off the prospect lists on these extra mailings to maximize profit.
* Get more mileage out of an existing catalog. Last week I talked about how to strategically use e-mail before and after a catalog drop to increase its effectiveness. You can accomplish the same thing with a simple postcard. Dropping a postcard to alert your customers there’s a new catalog on the way is a good step to build brand recognition, promote new products and special offers, or just create anticipation.
I’ve tested this concept before using an A/B split technique and have seen that the customers who also got the teaser postcard yielded higher response rates and revenue. Essentially the postcard created enough incremental revenue to cover its cost and added a bump to the overall profitability of the catalog mailing.
Chasing your catalog drop with a strategically timed postcard “after the fact” also can provide promising results. Use this technique to promote a special offer that will extend the life of your catalog and increase the book’s order curve.
Speak to you next week.
Jim Gilbert is president of Gilbert Direct Marketing, a full-service catalog and direct marketing agency. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 561-302-1719.
Jim Gilbert has had a storied career in direct and digital marketing resulting in a burning desire to tell stories that educate, inform, and inspire marketers to new heights of success.
After years of marketing consulting, Jim decided it was time to “put his money where his mouth was" and build his own e-commerce company, Premo Natural Products, with its flagship product, Premo Guard Bed Bug & Mite Sprays. Premo in its second year is poised to eclipse 100 percent growth.
Jim has been writing for Target Marketing Group since 2006, first on the pages of Catalog Success Magazine, then as the first blogger for its online division. Jim continues to write for Total Retail.
Along the way, Jim has led the Florida Direct Marketing Association as their Marketing Chair and then three-term President, been an Adjunct Professor of Direct and Digital marketing for Miami International University, and created a lecture series, “The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing,” which he has presented across the country at conferences and universities.