Image by: keiyac
By Dexter Lunde
Direct response advertising or marketing are specific techniques used in the advertising field that generates quite a unique and often passionate reaction from customers. As a businessman, there are ways that you and your business can benefit from this type of marketing. Luckily, Twitter is helping spread the knowledge about this great marketing technique.
#1) What is Direct Marketing?
Okay, first of all, let’s cover the basics for marketing. There are two basic types of marketing strategies: image (or branding) and the second type is direct response.
Branding or image marketing is when you remind your audience (often) about your brand and products by running multiple ads often. The idea is that the more often the audience sees the brand, the more often they will think about and remember the brand when they go shopping. We see this all the time with commercials on TV and ads on buses as they drive around town. We have all experienced this type of branding before.
The most difficult part of branding or image marketing is the fact that it is so expensive (at least, it is if you are doing it right). You must saturate various medias: TV, radio, social media, print, outdoor ads, online banners, other internet sources, etc. You must hit all of them and you must hit them often. Your ads must be seen on a regular basis and over a long period of time. That can cost a pretty penny.
Direct response marketing is intended to evoke a response from the viewer in order to have that viewer (or potential customer) take some kind of specific action like calling a phone number or going to their website for more information.
#2) Direct Marketing
There are five parts of good and effective direct marketing:
1. Track your ads. Because people are responding directly to you or your website, you can see which form of media is generating the biggest and smallest amount of response. Being able to talk to your customers (or have them fill out questionnaires) is a great way to manage and measure which ads are affective and which ads are just a waste of money.
2. Print and sales copies of ads are compelling. When you use branding, the images on print magazines are eye catching but there isn’t often any compelling material – at least not enough to really create a response in your audience and trigger a reaction (like “call now”). Direct response marketing uses eye-catching and noticeable headlines (in addition to images) and reads like an editorial.
3. Target markets. One example of direct response advertising is the late night infomercial. Infomercials target specific audiences. They target college students with “Bacon Bowl” ads and ads for specialized clothing because they know that the target demographic is normally watching TV at that time.
4. Special offers. Sometimes the ad isn’t necessarily to buy a product specifically but to request more information. A bank, credit card, or another credit company could target young college students (or students fresh out of college, looking to start the next stage of their lives) by offering a free credit report on their website.
This technique offers the potential customer something that piques his interests or desires or could try to generate a response based on the customer’s fears and frustrations. The goal is to elicit an emotional response in order to make the customer react in a specific way: call us for help, go to the website for more information, call the hotline to request a pamphlet, etc.
5. Short-term Follow-up. The next step is for the company (your company) to follow up on their requests. You can do this by asking the customer for details and interests when you get him on the phone. After the initial contact, wait a little bit and follow up on their interests.
Another way to follow up is to let him know about a secondary “irresistible offer”. Put a time limit on this offer or make it time sensitive. Because he ordered more information about your product or bought your product, offer him another “deal” on a follow-up product. He may bite then (they are more likely to buy from you right at that moment anyway). Otherwise, your company will have to call back soon to remind him of your offer.
#3) Twitter’s Direct Marketing
Twitter has begun a new project which will allow businesses to better connect with their customers by driving direct response. They are also helping businesses by giving them tips on how to use this program effectively.
In order to get started with direct response marketing on Twitter, they suggest that you:
1. Define a clear goal.
2. Test Tweet content.
3. Track your performance.
4. Choose the right products & features.
The first step is to make a goal for this marketing strategy. Do you want to drive site traffic toward your website? Do you want to sell more of one particular product? Do you want to capture more attention for a certain project?
The second step requires more research and development – but on a smaller scale. Test out a few different tweets to see which format and words get more of a response out of your audience. Once you have some good numbers on which phrases work best (and when they work the best), then you can generate more tweets that mimic that tweet.
The third step requires that you find a good way to track the responses, and actions of your customers and followers for a longer period of time – longer than that test run from step two. This way, you can tell when those key phrases have lost their “umph” and you can test run more tweets.
The last step is to make sure that you’re tracking the right plan. Twitter suggests that you look at their various Twitter Ad products in order to see which products will help you achieve that goal from step one.
Check out more information and test run a campaign here.
If you want to see some great success stories or how the pros do it, check out Rock Creek’s story. They specialize in outdoor gear and sporting goods.
You can also see how Arby’s gained more of an e-mail following using this method. Their Twitter direct marketing strategy resulted in…
400+ leads, 31% higher email open rate for Twitter-generated leads than average email subscriber, and 45% higher click-through rate for Twitter-generated leads than average email subscriber.