Basic Coupon Facts & Designing A Direct Marketing Campaign

Direct mail gives businesses a cost-effective method of efficiently reaching savings-hungry customers. News headlines insist that advertising is slumping, but smart marketers know that now is a crucial time to reach consumers. You can’t fight economic uncertainty successfully with a cut in ad spending. What are the benefits of advertising through an economic downturn? The answer is simple, no one else is advertising. During times when our country’s economy takes a dive, many businesses make hasty decisions to cut marketing costs. Evidence shows that cutting advertising budgets during an economic downturn can cause both an immediate and long-term decrease in profits.

Maintaining ad spending provides an opportunity for you to increase market share and even dominate the market. While competitors reduce advertising, businesses can seize the moment and continue marketing efforts, keeping brand identity and awareness “out there” for current and potential customers, who will view their product(s) as strong and enduring. Direct mail is an ideal solution because it is an economical, cost-effective way for businesses to maintain marketing efforts and stand out in today’s cluttered media environment.

A direct mail campaign can reverse any threat of a downturn in your business. Directly targeting your local current and prospective customers will stimulate consumer confidence. What better way to encourage them to seek your business than by providing them with additional savings?

Consumers demand coupons. Proctor and Gamble conducted a test, eliminating coupons and instituting an everyday low-pricing policy. The result, consumers boycotted, petitioned and even held public hearings. Fighting for their “right” to save, consumers turned to Proctor and Gamble competitors who, ironically, repeated the benefits of the test, increasing their coupon redemption rate as much as 48 percent. According to the research, 85 percent of all consumers use some form of coupons. More than 48 percent of coupon users represent household incomes of $50,000 and up. Consumers redeem an average of five coupons per week.

The bottom line – coupons attract new customers, reward loyal customers and promote spending patterns.

With postal rate increases, advertisers are concerned about the rising cost of direct mail marketing. When you mail your message in a cooperative program, postal increases are divided among all advertisers included in the mailing. Such advertising can save postage and help your business make money.Much like the SEACOAST SAVINGS MAGAZINE.

A successful direct marketing campaign can provide your customers with great savings and offers and provides you with customers. Remember, when targeting current and prospective customers, keep your message clear and concise.

OFFERS THAT WORK:

  • FREE Buy One, Get One Free
  • Half Price ½ Buy One get 2nd One ½ Price
  • 50% Off
  • Dollars Off Exam: $5.00 Off $25.00 Purchase, $10.00 Off $50.00 Purchase

When designing inserts for your direct mail campaign, remember to include all relevant information, your business’s name, address, phone number, logo, website and coupon expiration date (if applicable).

HERE ARE SOME TIPS:

  • The simpler the look, the greater the impact.
  • Keep the layout simple and unclut-tered, limiting copy to essentials only.
  • Lead offer should apply to a primary offer or service.
  • Highlight key areas – category, client name and offers.
  • Use of any art and graphics should frame the category, clients and offers.
  • Include a strong incentive offer to attract the consumer’s attention.
  • Use full-color photographs or clip art whenever possible.
  • Avoid too many graphic effects.
  • Display business name prominently.
  • Make company logo highly visible.
  • Four-color enhances eye appeal.
  • If your offer includes anything “free,” display the word prominently.
  • Describe any restrictions clearly, but try to avoid too many restrictions.
  • Consistency, consistency, consistency.

The content on this page is courtesy Seacoast Savings Magazine

Coupon Use Hits Record Highs

As cash-crunched consumers hunt for bargains, companies hope coupons will build loyalty after the recession is over.

By Courtney Rubin | Feb 8, 2010

After nearly two decades in decline, the coupon is back.

Thanks to the recession, in 2009 consumers used coupons at a faster clip than they did the year before – the first increase in coupon redemption in 17 years, says a new study by Inmar Inc., a company that processes coupon transactions. Businesses issued 367 billion coupons last year and buyers redeemed 3.3 billion, a 27 percent increase from 2008’s 2.6 billion – and the highest usage since Inmar began tracking trends in 1988.

Online coupon access increased 92 percent (Google searches for “printable coupons” and “online printable coupons” more than doubled) and redemption of those Internet deals leaped up 360 percent, although the Internet accounts for only a snippet – 1.5 percent – of all coupons redeemed. Thinking of an online blue light special? Inmar’s study suggests 1 in 5 people who receive your Internet coupon will cash in. (How do they measure such a thing? A formula involving page views and the number of times the page is printed.)

Traditional newspaper inserts are still prime territory for bargain hunters – 89 percent of coupons are distributed that way, and the paper vouchers account for more than half of those redeemed at the checkout counter. But digital discounts – often offered through an ever-increasing crop of companies devoted to mobile coupon aggregation – may help you lure new customers. A third of users signed up to one such aggregator, Cellfire, say they’ve never used a paper coupon, according to Brent Dusing, the company’s chief executive. Who’s using Cellfire? Sixty percent are women, and the biggest age group is 25 to 34-year-olds. Sixteen percent of users are older than 45.

The Inmar study suggests companies still see the humble coupon – paper or otherwise – as the way to consumers’ hearts.

www.inc.com/topic/Inmar+Inc.