Docmail

Hands on guide: Automated direct mail (a secret marketing weapon)

Paul Green Content, getting hands on with marketing, getting new clients, selling more to existing clients

How much post did you get this morning?

Probably not as much as arrived each day ten years ago. These days we are more likely to be overwhelmed by emails and social media, than by what the postie brings.

And that creates opportunity for you.

Because I believe that the post – which in marketing we call direct mail – is a chance to really stand out in front of your prospects and clients.

I recently sent out a test letter to promote my MSP Marketing Edge. I sent 25 mini marketing packs in the post and generated 2 sales. That’s an 8% response rate, which is very good indeed.

And my immediate return on investment (ROI) was 692%. It cost me about £1 per pack, and generated an immediate revenue of £198. Because the MSP Marketing Edge is a monthly service, the chances of that ROI going up are huge.

I’m now very, very motivated to send those packs out to every IT support company in the land.

Understand this: Direct mail is a powerful marketing method that few IT support companies use

And the best bit is… you can automate it

People don’t use direct mail because they see it as old fashioned. And expensive. And difficult.

It’s all those things. And that’s precisely why you should use it!

It’s a marketing channel which allows you to put a marketing message right in front of a targeted prospect or client with little else to distract them.

Here’s my secret weapon. When I’m doing mass mailings, I automate the send out using a very clever SaaS called Docmail.

Oh, what a wonderful service it is! It’s like a mail merge, but done in the cloud. You upload a document and a CSV of contacts; it does the mail merge for you; and posts the letters.

You can print and post for as little as 44p per letter. Which is 12p cheaper than a second class stamp!

Docmail has been around for years and years. Here’s my hands on guide to using it.

For the sake of a simplicity, I’m going to upload a simple one page letter. You can do a lot more than this with Docmail.

You might use it to send sales materials to prospects. Or introduce new services to clients. Or send out contracts. Or confirm service appointments.

Once you get away from your staff whinging about having to print and post stuff themselves, your imagination can run wild.

Start by setting yourself up with a free Docmail account

It’s docmail.co.uk. The account is free; you only pay when you send stuff.

Once you’re all set up, click on the blue button to create a mailing (once you’ve done your first mailing, you can can copy it again and again).

What format of mail do you want to send?

The more unusual the better. I think I’m going to experiment with the postcards next; or maybe a folded A3 sheet.

For this hands on guide, I’m going to stick with a simple A4 document.

Give it a name, choose your delivery method and click Next.

Note: Dotpost is some kind of email functionality. I’ve not used it

This is where it starts to get fun. From here you can upload a document; print something on the envelope; add in reply envelopes; or select existing documents from your library.

I clicked on upload A4 document, found my document on my computer, and uploaded it.

Of course, my document already had Docmail merge tags in it. This tells Docmail where to merge my data with the standard document.

Look on the left of the Docmail screen to access the merge tags.

Now repeat the same workflow to add your CSV of people you want to reach.

You can have some fun, and add your business’s unique personality to the letter…

We’re nearly there.

Docmail now does a check of your address data, and tells you when an address is going to cost more to reach. Often it will suggest a tweak to the address, to allow you to access a lower postal rate.

In this instance, it has seen straight through my fake data…

Take your time to get the address data right. Don’t see it as a pain; see that Docmail is trying to help you ensure your marketing messages are delivered.

Final choices:

  • What kind of print do you want?
  • When do you want it to be sent?
  • Click on envelope preferences. What kind of envelopes do you want?
  • How do you want returns to be handled? (managed by them; sent to you; or ignored)

Your proof will appear next.

Take some time to check it carefully. Mistakes in print are more noticeable than on the web or in an email.

Click the envelope to see what the letter looks like.

Happy? Check your price and approve.

Finally, a pro tip: Lodge some credit with Docmail rather than pay as you go. It’s cheaper in the long-run.

Please feel free to ask implementation questions using the Facebook comment box below. I’ll answer every single one.