Direct marketing: what it is and how it works

di Shaun De Lucia

Do you know what Direct Marketing is?

Direct marketing is a type of corporate business communication through which it is created a direct contact between the brand and the individual customer, without intermediaries and in a personalized way. The primary objective is to promote the brand and communicate the information necessary to better know the company and the products it has put on the market, encouraging sales through the creation of interactive and effective advertising campaigns, mainly by e-mail.

A direct marketing campaign aims to acquire customers, creating a loyal network and maintaining an active link with the user, trying to respond to different needs. Before starting a direct marketing process, it is necessary to collect data on potential customers and organize a database, an archive containing a list of names to contact and the necessary information to make the campaign personalized, targeted and productive.

Direct Marketing techniques

The main direct marketing techniques are direct mail and e-mail marketing. The first one consists in sending a series of emails containing advertising or promotional material to a predetermined target group of users, offering them personalized content. E-mail marketing, on the other hand, is intended to promote the company and its services, primarily for information purposes and only afterwards for commercial purposes. With the advent of the Internet, direct marketing has evolved, no longer based solely on the use of face-to-face sales strategies or telemarketing, but also through the use of digital channels.

The aim of direct marketing is to create a long-term relationship between the company and the potential customer by means of a direct sales process, by mail order and catalogue, by telephone, through the use of classic media and via the Internet. The brand has a specific promotional and advertising purpose, with the main aim of building a contact and interaction with a specific target of potential customers, who send feedback (positive or negative) to the company, improving communication.

Method and advantages of Direct Marketing

The fundamental characteristics of direct marketing are the importance given to the user needs, the creation of a privileged channel and a network of loyal customers, the offer of services and products customized according to the tastes of the recipients, the promotion of new ideas on the market and the increase in sales.

The success of a direct marketing campaign is based on well organized plan, building a database containing a list of names of potential users interested in the products and services offered by the brand and the effective use of digital tools. In order to launch an effective direct marketing campaign it is necessary to set upstream the marketing objectives, develop a coherent and complete database and implement a direct marketing plan to monitor the results frequently.

Among the objectives, first of all, it is essential to know the needs of potential customers, allowing them to acquire new users and to recover relationships with those who are now inactive. Once this has been established, we devote ourselves entirely to the creation of the database, which contains all the necessary data on users and collects useful information on the tastes and preferences of recipients, so as to be able to create emails as personalized and effective as possible.

At this point, it is necessary to query the database and then proceed to send the email to all users selected in the list, promoting the brand for both informative and commercial purposes, thus establishing a strategic plan to be monitored at every stage. Many companies offer the possibility to comfortably use and reduce the costs of services and software designed by them to make the process of digital marketing easier. Altravia, similarly, provides the brand with useful tools to design a promotional campaign and to encourage brand sales, taking into account in particular the needs and prefernces of potential customers, giving the right credibility to the company and aiming to increase profit.

It is therefore important to create a direct marketing plan, through the sending of attractive and stimulating contents through e-mails, that offer potential customers useful information with the aim of knowing better the company and its news, remaining always updated and communicating without the need of intermediaries, with the final goal of increasing the total sales of the company. At the basis of everything is essential that there is always a relationship of mutual trust between the user and the brand, which consequently manages to reduce the costs of promotions.

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