Every day and wherever you go, you see advertisements for different companies. In this innovative and progressive world, we are in today, you can just about use anything to market your product and the services you offer.
You can use the all-time favorite television commercials or make an engaging video that is a bit similar. Radio commercials exist too! You can also share your products through print ads in newspapers and magazines.
You can also send emails, text messages, or even make telephone calls to market your way into the consumers' hearts.
That doesn’t stop there, you also have the internet which makes marketing and advertising much easier to broadcast worldwide.
Your options are just endless!
Of course, each marketing campaign entails costs.
Now, what if you’re just starting up. Yes, you have a budget for the marketing but not enough for a television commercial, not even for a radio commercial.
How about print ads? Still too costly?
The internet! That shouldn’t be too costly. You can also make use of the mail, the telephone, and text messaging as well!
All of these marketing options won’t make you break the bank. These aren’t complicated to use as well. And they have proven to be effective.
How, though, are these marketing options going to be effective?
You can use these as tools to do direct marketing.
What is Direct Marketing?
As Investopedia defines it, “Direct marketing consists of any marketing that relies on direct communication or distribution to individual consumers, rather than through a third party such as mass media. Mail, email, social media, and texting campaigns are among the delivery systems used. It is called direct marketing because it generally eliminates the middleman, such as advertising media.”
Direct marketing, therefore, is a way of marketing and advertising your products and the services you offer directly to your consumers.
It’s like you’re talking to one of your customers or just to be conservative, potential customer, face to face and explaining to them what your product is, what it can do, how much it is, and how he or she can purchase it.
With direct marketing, you won’t have to spend on an advertising agency or a network to broadcast to the public your products and services.
You and your team will be your own advertising agency and network that will publicize your products to your target consumers.
To do the advertising and marketing yourself can be quite tedious. However, in direct marketing, the people you’re going to advertise to are limited.
Just imagine yourself if you’ll have to meet with a hundred random clients and explain to them one by one your product or the service you are offering.
One word, EXHAUSTING.
And aside from being exhausting, it could just be a waste of your time, energy, and resources since some of those people might not really be interested in your product or service like if you were into print on demand.
That is why in direct marketing, it is important that you identify specific people you are going to “talk” to. Distinguish those who are really interested, the interested, could be interested, and the uninterested.
That way, you get to prioritize those members of the market that have a better probability of purchasing your product or using the services you offer.
There are many tools of the trade to have that important list established. So don’t fret, you’ll have that covered!
Now, back to direct marketing.
As mentioned earlier you can use several tools to get your direct marketing started. You have the mail, telephone, and text messages.
However, with the emergence of the internet, your tools have grown better and you have a wider range of tools. You have the Email which can bring your message to your consumers faster than the postal mail. You also have social media platforms that can help you become more creative in advertising which can pick more of your consumers’ interests.
Direct marketing may really drain your energy, but, with the help of your tools, you can make all those hard work pay-offs and you’ll be surprised with the success you’re going to reap after.
Examples of Direct Marketing
Now that you have an idea of the tools which you can use in direct marketing, let’s get some examples of how you can use these.
Telemarketing, by the name itself, is an example of direct marketing using the telephone or other forms of calling. One example of this is your telephone company calling you for a promo they want to offer you.
Another is a bank company offering you to apply for a personal loan at a very competitive interest rate.
These kinds of direct marketing campaigns can be intrusive, so be careful. If you don’t want to lose a potential customer, make sure to get consent first.
- Email marketing
Email marketing is an example of direct marketing or direct marketing campaigns using email addresses.
Marketing spiels and promo codes are broadcasted to the specific target market via email.
Examples of these are promo advertisements by airline companies.
They usually send email notifications to their email subscribers about an upcoming seat sale or discounts which they can avail themselves of upon purchasing a ticket on a specific date.
Again, ask for your customer’s consent and also refrain from asking for their account details in your email. They might think that you’re phishing for information with the intent of using it in bad faith.
There are more examples of direct marketing that you can use and explore. You can even use different ones simultaneously. Just keep in mind though how your consumers might react. They might feel bombarded with way too many advertisements and be annoyed.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Direct Marketing
In every decision that you make in life, you must always have to consider the pros and cons.
So here is a list of the pros and cons of direct marketing.
Advantages of Direct Marketing
- Less costly
Direct marketing is less costly because it is targeted to a specific number of consumers only.
So because you already know which people and how many of them are there, you won’t have to waste your time, energy, and money on those that are not part of the list.
For example, if you are launching a new product (beware of duplicates by the way) line in your business and you want to send a PR package to your 10 loyal subscribers, then, all you have to prepare are 10 of that new product line you are launching and 10 wrapping papers or baskets to put those in.
You can send it to the door to door or via mail. That's easy. And those 10 loyal subscribers you sent those packages to will probably patronize your new product line as well because they know you and your products.
In line with the example above, through direct marketing, you can increase your consumers’ loyalty.
Well today, business is about bringing great customer experience.
So, because direct marketing lets you customize your direct marketing campaigns according to your consumers’ preferences, you are more capable of making your consumers feel that they are listened to and taken care of.
- Easy to measure the effectivity
Direct marketing, aside from being less costly, its success is also easy to measure.
Take, for example, if you’re sending discount coupons to your targeted consumers, you can easily count or measure its effectiveness by counting the number of coupons used.
So, those are the advantages of direct marketing.
Now, let’s move on to the disadvantages of direct marketing.
Disadvantages of Direct Marketing
So far, there’s only one disadvantage to direct marketing and that is it's being limited.
Limited in a sense that not everyone can get to learn about you easily which takes a toll on your branding.
As the direct marketing definition states, it “relies on direct communication or distribution to individual consumers”. Hence, the need to establish a list of loyal and probable consumers.
Although this is a disadvantage, it doesn’t mean your business won’t be successful. It just means that it might take some time for your brand to be seen out there.
So just be patient. You’ll get there.
Direct Marketing Plan or Strategies
Now, you can’t just make an email with advertisements and promo codes and send them away to your target consumers or just randomly call them and tell them “by the way, I have a promo code that you can use when you check out any products from the website”.
Like any other marketing strategy, you have to make these as appealing and interesting as they could.
So how do you do that?
First, you have to identify your target market or consumers. Again, very important in direct marketing.
Second, after identifying your target market, understand their behavior, their likes and dislikes, and their preferences.
Third, when you have understood your target consumers more, you can use those preferences to create effective direct marketing campaigns. You can use their interests to create a captivating advertisement.
In that way, they won’t just ignore your emails or say that they are busy and can’t talk with you right now.
So take the time to know your consumers and take advantage of that.
Now that you have learned about direct marketing, don’t hesitate to start that business. Don’t worry about not being able to afford a television commercial or print ads. You can still make your way to success with direct marketing!