“In my experience, one of the best ways to communicate marketing messages to your prospects and customers is through direct mail. There are a number of ways to use direct mail effectively, and postcards are right on top.” —Joe Garcia, marketing consultant and author of Give to Get Marketing Solutions.
A couple of posts back, I made a case that snail mail still works to increase bookings. Now I want to share what our best massage marketing consultants — our customers — said about their postcard mailings. These particular customers were willing to experiment until they found what works for them and their clients. What works for one practitioner doesn’t necessarily work for the next, but they ALL find that some kind of postcard campaign works to bring in both returning clients and new ones.
Let me introduce you to your creative, enterprising colleagues:
- Marie McMahon has been in business since 2006. She gives $10 off on all her postcard offers. She has sent both holiday and birthday messages to her massage clients, but her Thanksgiving postcard is by far the most effective. Several years ago at Thanksgiving, she sent out 100 — thirty of those had booked by February first. Marie attributes the great return on that mailing to her message of appreciation (“Down to Earth Therapeutic Massage would like to give thanks”) plus the fact that she hand writes a personal note. When clients bring the card in, they often say how much they appreciate both the card and the message.
- Jon Petersen learned for himself that postcard campaigns get results. His first year in business he didn’t send postcards at the holidays, and sold $1000 in gift certificates. The next year, he sent a Christmas mailing announcing this offer: “Buy a gift certificate by Dec. 31st, and get the second one for 25% off.” His sales increased to $4000! Many clients who bought one the year before, bought two the next. Jon emails the same offer for a “double hit,” as he called it. But he added, “With postcards, there is a nice looking card to hold in your hand. With email, people delete a lot of messages every day.” Jon sent 320 cards at Christmas. Since then, his mailing list has grown to 400. And half the bookings since the holidays have been new clients due to gift certificate sales, an impressive boost for his business.
- Barbara Green-Hyduchak gets a great return on massage postcard mailings — 40 to 50%! She gives $5 off in her ongoing birthday discount program, and mails Christmas postcards (“cheaper than greeting cards”), offering 10% off gift certificate purchases. The only lackluster response she received was when she sent “It’s been awhile” cards to folks who had not scheduled for some time. On her Christmas postcard this year she hand wrote “Happy Holidays” and special offers for both gift certificate purchases and aromatherapy sessions. She sent 400 postcards to regulars as well as clients going back 2 years. Barbara has found her offers work fine without an expiration date — she doesn’t want anyone to miss out.
Try It Yourself
If you haven’t tried postcard mailings, target a group of clients you would like to see more often and mail them an offer, or even a gift certificate promotional. But make sure you track your response. Better yet, send some of your clients postcards and some emails, and see if one gives your superior results!