Marketing to businesses

MarketingFile - Marketing to businesses
MarketingFile - Marketing to businesses

Where it all began...

B2B marketing established itself in the late 1970’s when B2B companies started to realise they can replicate the marketing material produced by consumer facing businesses – and hey presto a new era of marketing emerged! However, it wasn’t until the early 80’s when competition really hit home for large corporations who were beginning to notice smaller businesses attempting to take their market share. It was at this time mass direct mail began and marketing agencies such as Ogilvy & Mather and Saatchi & Saatchi became the go-to guys for large budget campaigns.

What happened next...

Direct mail became the next “big thing” for B2B marketing with the help of market intelligence and data collection. B2B businesses soon found that by analysing their existing customer data they could determine prospects based on similar data patterns, such as sector, size of business, turnover, number of employees etc. Today the B2B marketing environment encompasses a whole range of marketing services, from direct marketing, social, mobile, video and email marketing.

Although B2B marketing is classed as a discipline of its own, business markets are derived from consumer demand. This derived demand has to be considered when formulating B2B marketing strategy in order to target business markets with strong consumer connections. For example one of MarketingFile’s largest sectors is the automotive industry. Our marketing to dealerships, manufacturers and their agencies is B2B focused keeping in mind their target market, consumers.

5 differences between B2C and B2B marketing:

Complex decision making – the purchasing process a business will go through for any number of business products is a far more complex and will combine numerous decision makers. The complexity of the products are also much higher, with the customer needing to know technical specification and often bespoke products a qualified expert may be needed to assist. As the B2B marketer you will need to determine your clients’ needs and expectations from the product or service they are purchasing.

Few customers – with around 5 million trading entities in the UK the audience for B2B products and services is very small compared to B2C (60+ million) meaning fewer customers  to target. Because of this managing your database is crucial in identifying prospects.

Rational purchasing – unlike consumer purchasing which can be to fulfil a need or want based on behavioural desires, B2B purchasing patterns are based on a rational need for a particular product or service. A B2B customer will often base their purchasing on price, service, quality, brand or business relationships. Recognising which market segments best suit your products or services and how to appeal to them is not an easy task, but the work will pay off as mentioned below!

Larger and longer sales – B2B purchases are (on average) more expensive, they tend to be for products or services that will benefit the company to improve performance and therefore are complex products, as mentioned above. The sales process also can take anywhere from a month to 3 years to finalise, an important factor when allocating marketing budgets!

Personal relationships – All the points above lead to the need for personal relationships to be formed with key accounts. Any B2B customer will expect to deal with the same point of contact for multiple purchases. Forming a strong relationship with your clients will establish a level of loyalty between you and your customers ensuring repeat business.

For business or consumer data MarketingFile are the UK’s largest supplier with access to over 60 million consumer records and 5 million businesses across the UK. If you want to find prospects in your area or that require your businesses needs get in touch with the team today on 01462 437 733 or email [email protected] with your request.

Tips when purchasing B2B data

MarketingFile - Data Protection: are you in the clear?
MarketingFile - Data Protection: are you in the clear?

Using a relevant, clean and well targeted marketing list is an asset for any company undertaking direct marketing activity for prospect customers. Ensuring you are using the right list for you, we have put some pointers together for B2B businesses to follow to know you are heading in the right direction.

Who do you want to target?

The very first point is crucial; any business requiring successful direct marketing needs to have an understanding of their target market and who in that market is the best person to speak to. There are a couple of aspects to take into consideration, which sector, what size company, their location and most importantly, who is the decision maker. Are you looking for the IT Manager, Managing Director or HR department? Will the decision need more than one person to sign off? Contacting the most relevant person may give you a better conversion rate.

Choose the right provider or owner

Deciding on where to buy your data can be difficult, there are many list owners in the market but some of these do come with limitations such as minimum order values or a limited supply of data. This is where list providers are useful, with access to multiple lists these may be the best option for a SME. However, ensure the lists they provide will be relevant and always check their reputation in the market and the DMA.

Stick to your budget and buy the amount you need

Keep in mind your workforce, how many prospects can be contacted in a day or week? Purchasing thousands of records means they will only go unused for weeks until you can get round to using them, By this time they are out of date… re: the above point. There is no use in buying more data than what you need, a trustworthy list owner or provider will advise on how many records you should be purchasing.

Ask to try before buying

If you are new to purchasing marketing lists ask if you are able to try a sample of the list, however you have to bear in mind this is only a SAMPLE and you might not get any sales, but it is a good opportunity to test that you get in touch with the right person etc. Is the data clean and up to date?

You want to make sure the data you buy has the most up to date contacts, so ask how often the lists are refreshed and updated. This averages every 1-3 months, any older than this and the information will be out of date and therefore useless to you. Once you purchase the list ensure you keep it clean as data changes at an astonishing rate, keep in touch with the most relevant prospects.

What are the license terms?

Ask for the different options available for how you can use the data and what the licence terms are. Do you want the records for single or multiple use, and if multiple check the licence period, can you use the data for 6 or 12 months? To ensure you do not break the terms of the licence data owners or list brokers can seed the data, so they can see if you breach the licence terms.

Be prepared for the results

Before you send out 500,000 emails and expect 400,000 people to open, click and then purchase from the email broadcast, please be realistic on the outcome from using the marketing list. When using cold data anything above a 10-15% open rate is great, remember you are emailing a company for the first time, they may never had heard of your business before so having any engagement in your marketing activity will be a plus.

Keep it above board

There are many legal requirements to be aware of when buying and using data and you have to be conscious of these obligations. When using the data ensure the lists are clean and are run past the TPS, FPS, MPS and CTPS (Corporate Telephone Preference Service) so all businesses who have opted out are not called. This is something you should ask your list provider before purchasing, if they do not carry this out there are many online tools to help and it is a service MarketingFile provides to prospect or client marketing lists. Another key factor when it comes to staying legal is to check the company you are purchasing data from is registered with a regulatory body such as the DMA.

Overall cost – any hidden charges?

Depending on the data you need, the fields you require and the volume needed the price will vary. Starting costs for basic records (name and phone number) can start from as little as 10p a record for single use. Again this is another factor to be considered, the licence agreement as this will also change the cost of the data. Before making the purchase ensure there are no hidden costs, such as delivery or minimum orders.

We hope you find these points useful when it comes to purchasing your B2B data. Please get in touch with our team today for a free quote on 01462 437 733!

Pitch Perfect in 10 Easy Steps

MarketingFile - Small business marketing
MarketingFile - Small business marketing

We know what it’s like. You spend weeks preparing, analysing and re-reading your presentation. You nail it every time. Then you step into the boardroom… At this point anything from self-confidence to nerves kick in and your mind goes blank. All those weeks of preparation disappear in an instance and your left looking for words.

Whilst we’re not here to help boost your confidence (directly at least), or to manage your nerves, we can provide you with some great tips to ensure you’re in the best possible position when you step into the room;

Prepare, Prepare, Prepare

OK, so we already covered that you’ve no doubt been doing this for weeks. If you haven’t, you should have been! You know your business/product better than anyone but this can also be your downfall. You don’t need to let investors know every inner detail. Instead, try to step out from the inner workings and only give your listeners the information that they really need to know.

On top of this take a moment to step back and consider the questions anyone listening may have. From “Why should I give you £15 million when the company hasn’t even made £15?” to “Why are you trying to produce, market and distribute 10 products at the same time before you see if a single one sells at all?”. Taking time to cover all the basis may feel long winded now but you’ll thank us down the line.

Practice Makes Perfect

Practicing in front of the mirror isn’t going to cut it. You need to practice to an audience (of real people). Whether it’s family and friends, networking events or local stores. Practicing in front of a live audience is the only way you can experience a share of the nerves on the big day. The more you get used to the pressure, the easier you’ll find it on the big day.

Take a leaf from a comedian’s book. Yes, we find them hilarious but that’s not the case for all their jokes. They spend years trying new material to live audiences, if it works they keep it, if not it’s out the window. At least that way you can judge how your presentation engages and alter it accordingly.

Know Your Figures

Need we say much more? People may think your product is useless, but if you can back it up with numbers that’s all investors care about. After all, it’s all about them seeing return on their investments. If you can show them that’s what they’ll get you already have them hooked.

It’s also worth having multiple projections (best case, moderate case and worst case) to show you really have a grip and understanding of your financial workings.

Less is More so Get to the Point

You may have heard of the term elevator pitch. If you haven’t it may lead to trouble. When it comes to keeping attention, lengthy explanations will only turn investors off. If you can’t get them to believe and understand your concept in under 3 minutes, you can almost guarantee your customers won’t either.

If you’re using presentation slides, the same goes here. Keep your number of slides to a minimum and use them to highlight key points. At no point should you be reading off them like a book!


It’s a nerve racking experience. Don’t forget to breathe. We know you have passion and a will to succeed, but taking deep breathes will help control your heart. With this in check, you can deliver your information without the babble that goes with nerves.

When the questions start the same process applies. Taking deep breathes not only helps you manage the barrage of aggressive comments but also provides you valuable time to think and win investors over with your response and calm head under pressure. Don’t forget, they will often do it just to test you as much as your product.

Showcase Your Personality

Even if they don’t believe in your product, investors may believe in you. Don’t be afraid to show a little personality. It’s more engaging and helps dragons see the person behind the business. Doing so could be the difference between success and failure. As good as your product is, if they feel they couldn’t work with you, you may as well pack your bags and go now.

Tell A Story

While the bulk of presentations are formal and rigid in structure, pitches tend to have more fluidity. This in turn allows you to break away from the facts and present your ideas in a more compelling manner.  

A great example of this comes from Johnny Georges, founder of Tree T-Pee, who appeared on the American show; Shark Tank.

Keep it Visual and Don’t be Scared of Interaction

Research shows that the longer we hold or touch an object – the more ownership we feel we have of it (and the more we want it). This then grows, as the more we feel we own something, the higher the value we place on it. All proving that visual presentations and physical interaction have a positive psychological impact on your audience.

If you still can’t keep away from the old fashioned slides, why not prepare a second version of your presentation. This can be sent on later to provide key facts and information as a reminder to any potential investors.

Have A Negotiation Strategy

Don’t Beg. Begging for investment shows desperation. If you really believe in your business, you know you’ll be able to get money elsewhere so don’t sell yourself short. Confidence in these situations can be the difference so believe in yourself.

You go in pitching for a certain value, but have a back-up in mind. Chances are their will be negotiations ahead. If you have a bottom line price you’ll know exactly where you stand and won’t be led into any rash decisions.

Don’t Even Try to be the Smartest Person in the Room

Knowing what you know is great but you don’t know what you don’t know. Whether you believe it or not, don’t be the smartest person in the room. As well as money, investors have a wealth of resources, contacts and knowledge. Knowing your weaknesses can be more valuable than your strengths as you build a team to take care of all aspects.

Here at Everything DM we can help you prepare for any speech or presentation you need to give. Be it with handout’s, follow up emails or slide design. Call 01462 437 555 and speak to one of our team to discuss your requirements.

Responsive Design for Email Marketing

MarketingFile - Responsive Design for Email Marketing
MarketingFile - Responsive Design for Email Marketing

With PC sales plummeting and mobile traffic on the rise, responsive email-marketing is becoming a valuable asset to any business. There are a number of reasons as to why this is important and evidence to suggest that your campaign success can be solely based on it.

Read on to see our endorsement for designing emails responsively:

What is Responsive Design?

Responsive design is a simple concept, created to keep your digital products looking good on any viewing portal, no matter what its size. Ultimately, this generally pans out as multi-column layouts for landscape tablet screen sizes and larger – and single column design for anything smaller.

In general, the design stays the same but the formatting changes. We are also able to hide elements on smaller or larger screens if we feel they will be ineffective elements at that scale.

Why is Responsive Design Important?

You’re guilty of it right? Checking your emails when you’re out and about? Work, personal or other accounts, we all do it. Let’s face it, if you don’t you’re fighting a snowstorm, already buried six feet under.

This is illustrated by the fact that 60% of emails are opened on mobile phone or tablet. On top of this 38% of click troughs occur from this format also.

Ultimately, it boils down to usability. Emails that are sent un-responsive generally provide the reader with a poor experience. This not only effects your brand image, but often means your marketing budget heads straight to their trash.

When Should I Apply Responsive Design?

Now! The longer you wait, the more your wasting your time and your money. To increase response and improve brand awareness, you should be implementing these changes ASAP. You are better off sending less emails in a responsive format than lots in an unusable format.

How Will Responsive Design Help Me?

Response. 80% of marketers state that their revenue is “directly linked” to their email operations. By creating a mobile-friendly format you make it easier for prospects to click through to your site. You also make your brand more appealing and who doesn’t want that.

How Do I Make the Most of Responsive Design?

There are a number of different things you can do to make the most of responsive design. If you have some time on your hands have a play and test send emails to yourself. It’s the best way to learn what does and doesn’t work for your business. However, if you’re pushed for time you could always give the following a try;

  • Keep content to a minimum so the email can be scanned quickly. Readers spend an average of 17 seconds on each email.
  • Keep text alignment consistent throughout your message.
  • Favour percentage division over fixed size for tables and other elements.
  • Use larger imagery (more than 300px) and keep all images consistently sized.
  • Avoid large white spacing
  • Ensure your margins remain equal on all sides
  • Whatever you do, do not delete the <head> tag. Doing so will render your email unresponsive.
  • Test, test, test. There are plenty of services out there to help you view your email in multiple platforms and browsers prior to send. (Try Litmus or Email on Acid).

Who Can Help Me with Responsive Design?

We can! Here at Everything DM, we’ve been applying responsive design techniques to all of our emails for quite some time and without blowing our own trumpet too much, we’ve become quite good at it.

If you need advice, a one-off email or multiple templates set-up then we’re on hand to help. Just call us on +44 (0) 1462 437 555 or email [email protected]

Call to Action – Are You Getting Response?

MarketingFile - Improve your response rate
MarketingFile - Improve your response rate

Analysing the response to your campaigns can be one of the trickier elements of marketing. Whether it be direct mail, advertising or digital campaigns keeping track of your return on investment can help plan future projects more efficiently. 

Whilst a direct link between your pieces and sales may be what you’re looking for, there’s more to advertising than this. Initially we need to evaluate if the product or service you offer is one of immediate purchase. To expand on this, a car showroom shouldn’t expect an instant flurry of response as most individuals don’t go buying cars on a monthly basis. In these instances, we use marketing to increase brand awareness so that when the time comes, your business is front of mind.

In addition to this, it’s worth pointing out that 6 months down the line, a prospect may not remember where they’ve seen your name, so don’t drop specific marketing channels because nobody mentions them directly.

Whilst, this is all well and good for longer lifespan products and services, some of you may well have the here and now fix, so let’s look at some techniques we can apply to measure our response.

Physical Coupons

Coupons are one of the oldest tricks in the book. They can be applied largely to print materials (see coupon codes for digital), in either solid or perforated formats. This allows you to simply count up how many coupons have been redeemed to measure response rate at a glance. The only downside? This method requires you to offer a discount or benefit of sorts. After all, as a buyer, why use a coupon that holds no benefit to me.

Coupon Codes

The digital equivalent of physical coupons (although they can be applied to print products). Comes with the same issue of requiring benefits (e.g discounts or freebies), but has the added advantage of automated counting to give you instant response rates.

Variable U.R.L’s

The purpose of variable URL’s is that specific prospects get individual web addresses, personalised to them. For example, an email campaign can be sent through to an individual with links directed at the domain This not only allows us to see how many times a page has been visited, but also allows us to pinpoint specific persons of interest for additional/future campaigns.

QR Codes

A format of mixed opinion. However, most QR code generators can provide a dynamic service. This allows us to change the page redirect for single codes in order to provide valuable analytics and measure response.

Landing Page

A more simple method, applicable to both print and digital media is landing pages. By setting up a dedicated micro-site for additional information, not only can we optimise content in mailings, but also track those who are interested in finding out more.


A less effective way to monitor response, is through footfall. Tracking volume of customers or visitors on a daily basis is a laborious task but can give you some insight into marketing effectiveness.


In a similar way to footfall, tracking call and email numbers can also give you an insight. The same can be said about visits to your website through Google analytics. All of which are relative as not directly linked to your marketing, but its worth tracking.

Of course sales can be used as one channel to measure although as we mentioned, direct results are ultimately uncountable.

Track what you can, keep all channels open and never underestimate the power of brand awareness.

4 reasons why your campaigns shouldn’t be a one off

MarketingFile - 4 reasons why your campaigns shouldn’t be a one off
MarketingFile - 4 reasons why your campaigns shouldn’t be a one off

Did you hear about the company who had an amazing response from their first mailing? The one where they earnt enough for everyone to retire to the Caribbean from a single send? No, neither did I.

There is no silver bullet that converts prospects to purchasers in one communication. Especially to cold prospects. There are many articles about how often you need to contact someone before they convert. The numbers vary a lot, I’ve seen anything between 5 and 13 times, but they all agree on one thing.

You need to do it more than once


Timing may be the secret to great comedy, but it’s as important in getting your message read. Even the perfect offer, delivered to the right person will fail if it’s the wrong time. And by wrong time, I don’t mean Tuesday morning or Thursday evening.

I mean the wrong time for the person you’ve sent the message to.

Prospects don’t sit around, waiting for your campaign to arrive. They’re in meetings, trying to beat a deadline or taking the kids swimming. There are countless distractions that stop someone seeing your message – let alone read it all the way through.

Multiple sends give you more than one chance to get noticed.


Receive a message from a household name and you focus on the content. Receive it from a company you don’t know, and your attention moves towards who that company is. Are they reputable, what else do they do?

Unless it’s an impulse purchase, people rarely buy from a company the first time they interact with them. They need more than one contact to convince them to buy.

Multiple sends build up confidence and trust in your brand.

Meeting a need

Companies rarely provide only one product or service. Even when they do, there is more than one benefit on offer. Explaining everything you do in one communication will overwhelm people. Make it simple for your prospects, focus on one thing per message. Build up the full range of benefits over the length of the campaign.

There won’t be one universal benefit that gets everyone to buy. Give people a different reason to buy from you in each message. Different benefits will meet the different needs of your clients.

Multiple sends will allow you to engage more of your prospects.

Buying stage

Even the perfect offer that convinces people they want to buy from you, doesn’t guarantee a sale. Budget or contract issues can prevent people from buying straight away.

You need to remain in consideration until the client is in the market to buy. Regular messages ensure that your product or services are not forgotten.

Multiple sends keep your brand front of mind.

Multiple send campaigns are more than the sum of their parts. They develop relationships through the cumulative effect of recognition and the benefits provided. Which in turn leads to the acquisition of new clients in a cost efficient and effective way.

Whether you are targeting B2B prospects or B2C ones, we can help with targeted business lists and consumer lists that will allow you to run multiple send campaigns. Contact us now to see how we can help your business grow.

Multi-touch campaigns vs a solus campaign. What works best?

MarketingFile - Key questions for your multi-channel marketing
MarketingFile - Key questions for your multi-channel marketing

So what works best; a multi-touch marketing campaign or a solus email.

Well let’s start a brief explanation of each. Multi-touch is just that, it’s a marketing campaign which uses various channels such as email, mail, SMS, phone. The idea is that by combining different approaches you get in front of the customer in a number of ways, with a coherent message, helping you stay front-of-mind when it’s time to purchase / interact.

A solus campaign is just one chance to hit the customer with one message through one channel.

Get your timing wrong

Get your timing wrong with a solus email campaign and you’ve missed your chance. Whereas with a multi-touch campaign if your timing isn’t ideal first, second or even third time round you still have chances to reach your audience.

Tell a story

With a solus email you have one chance to get your message across, this may mean needing to include quite a lot of information to cover everything in your one hit. But too much information can be too much for the reader to absorb, disengaging them.

A multi-touch campaign allows you to tell a story, you can build up your messages, your proposition, your offers and your calls to action.

What data?

Consumer and business data comes in many forms, so it’s important that you know whether you want to run a solus or multi-touch campaign before you purchase. This will ensure that your data will work hard for you.

Single use data is ideal for the solus campaign. As the name suggests you get one use out of the data, you then need to delete it to ensure you are being compliant and within the law. It’s worth noting that data is ‘seeded’ to ensure it’s regulated, so any improper use beyond the licence terms will be flagged. And you could be subject to a fine.

Purchasing multi-use consumer or business data gives you much more flexibility when planning and running multi-touch campaigns. This type of licence allows you to use the data a set number of times within an agreed period. This allows you to tell your story to prospects and nurture them with the aim of converting them to customers. Again, multi-use data will be seeded, so to remain compliant ensure you’re aware of, and abide by the licence terms to ensure you don’t end up with a fine (and a bad reputation).

> To discuss single or multiple use licences you can contact our data team who will be able to help you understand the different terms which are open to you
> You can also run your own consumer and business data counts to give you an indication as to how many prospects may be within your target area

Smart data filtering for better B2B targeting

MarketingFile - Data Protection: are you in the clear?
MarketingFile - Data Protection: are you in the clear?

Knowing where to start when targeting other businesses with your products, services or solutions can be tricky. 

Having a firm idea in your mind about who you want to target is a good start. This could be based on the ‘typical’ company that you transact with, or a wider pool of other businesses who you think would be interested in you and should be learning more about your company. 

But have you thought about how you are actually going to reach these organisations? And here we’re not talking about the channel (such as email, phone, direct mail and SMS) but how you’re physically going to reach them. How do you get that well planned email received without an email address? How do you make the initial phone call without a phone number?

One option is purchasing a list of businesses – which you can then target. However, when purchasing a business list you may assume the solution is to cast your net wide – buying in high volume data numbers to yield high volume enquiries. But it’s not always a numbers game. It’s about being smart in your targeting through intelligent data filtering, ensuring you’re targeting those who are most likely to be interested in you. 

Succinct targeting and filtering may result in a smaller pool to target, but don’t panic – this niche pool should be more receptive to your business. This gives you a better chance of success, reduces wastage and leaves you and spending less time on businesses who have no interest in you.

However, you can only apply smart filtering if the business list you have purchased has the breadth of options. You may find some ‘off-the-shelf’ lists are just too basic, containing limited contact information such as email addresses, with no further insight or intelligence to help you. 

Instead you need to be looking for an organisation who can run tailored data searches for you, based on who you want to target. 

The first step towards successful B2B targeting through tailored data for getting your standard data selections accurate:

Spider diagram looking at data selections

Once standard selections are set you can add further filters to ensure you reach the right businesses. 

It’s vital you’re aware of all filtering options available from your data company as this is how you’ll be reaching the right people; not the wrong ones. These additional filters are how you start to become niche in targeting.

Make sure you take time to really consider what filters will be effective in working for your business.

Additional filters classified as ‘general business’ should include:

Spider diagram detailing additional data filters that can be used

You may be buying data on a single-use licence, so if you’ve purchased an incorrect data list for your business it will be wasted. But this is where your data company should be adding value through knowledge and experience. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, get additional filters added to your standard selections to see the data counts you get back. 

Also have an open mind; you may have a very strong idea on who will want to hear from your business, but take feedback from your data company. This is their area of expertise. They may have new filter suggestions which could make all the difference to the chances of success of your B2B campaign.

Finally ensure you’re buying data which will work for your business; don’t always think that a high data volume with basic information will yield high returns. You need to understand who you are contacting to avoid sending your message to the wrong people. MarketingFile hold data on 5 million UK business decision makers, with 53 data selections available; think what your business could achieve if you harnessed that potential correctly.

Get your postal and email marketing campaigns ready to go

MarketingFile - Get your postal and email marketing campaigns ready to go
MarketingFile - Get your postal and email marketing campaigns ready to go

You are going to send out a marketing campaign and are ready to get the ball rolling. So, to make this process more efficient and as easy as possible, below is a checklist of everything you should have prepared ready to send over to your design and campaign team.


Postage and pages

There are many options to choose from for example is it A4 or A5? It is going to be double sided or single sided? How many pages will it be? Do you want it sent in a printed envelope or as it is with the address printed straight on to it?

OCR Placement

To qualify for this your content should be placed correctly in adherence to the Royal Mail Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Placement guidelines allowing for clear zones where needed. Ask the Marketing File campaign team to send you over the guidelines for your letter and postcard campaigns.


Only use professional high quality imagery to show your business in a good light. For printing the images need to be high resolution – 300ppi (pixels per inch) and in CYMK colour mode. The size of an image and its pixels correlate so the higher the number of pixels the larger and sharper the image so always supply the high resolution version.

Bleed and crop

Supply your artwork with a 3mm bleed around and with crop marks ready to send straight away. All images that reach the edge of your page should be stretched out to the bleed line. Our Touchpoint system already includes crop marks when uploaded so we ask for artwork to be supplied with just a 3mm bleed.

Greeting line

How do you want to address your reader? By first name, salutation surname or salutation, first name and surname? Do you have all the data to be able to do this and more importantly is your data accurate?

Header and footer

Your high resolution logo, contact details and any small print should be positioned here.


​Do you want a signature included? If so, again, this needs to be sent over as a high resolution JPG.

File type

If you have completed the above and your campaign is ready to be sent straight to the printers then all you will need to send over is a high resolution PDF with bleed and crop marks. However, if you want amends made then the original InDesign file will need to be supplied.


Subject line

Make sure it will grab the reader’s attention, don’t be vague and think about spam filters for example ‘FREE’ will flag up as spammy.


Always tell your readers your identity; including a logo displays strong product placement and builds brand awareness.


Again, use professional high quality imagery to promote your business in a good light. For generic photographs you can source these online from copyright free sites such as pexels or through creative commons (check link). These should be supplied as 72ppi in RGB colour mode. The designer will then compress these images to reduce the file size and loading time.


Be minimal and link back to your website to expand on further details. The most important points and your ‘call to action’ (CTA) button should appear at the top. Lastly, your content should be organised into small sections to promote scan friendly reading.


Your call to action button is the main reason why you are sending your email so it needs to be immediately identifiable, tap friendly and repeated again if your email requires a lot of scrolling.


Clearly indicate the URL’s you want attached to images and/or text. Make sure you include your website and all your social media profiles if you have any, and an unsubscribe link as it is illegal to not allow recipients to opt out.

File type

If you want to design your email yourself or already have a designer then it can be put together using creative software such as Photoshop or InDesign and exported as a PDF to be converted into HTML.

14 Top Tips: Before sending your direct mail

MarketingFile - Return to Sender
MarketingFile - Return to Sender

Let’s be honest – being successful with a direct mail campaign is not as easy as it looks, but don’t be disheartened; once you know how, direct mail is an essential tool and should play a vital part in your marketing plan.

That’s why MarketingFile have put together these top tips to follow when preparing your ‘DM’.

Remember – if you’re not happy with any of your answers to the following, then do not send your direct mail; tweak, modify and amend until you are!

1. Pretend you’re the recipient

At first glance, does your direct mail look interesting? Does the headline/title grab you and make you want to read on to find out more?

2. What’s the point of it?

What do you want your customer to do now? What is the aim of your direct mail? Try to keep to this point and don’t confuse your audience by including too much information on other things. If you go off on a tangent then so will your reader – don’t lose their attention, keep them focused on what it is you want them to do.

3. Hard hitting, interesting and desirable

Present your offer in a way that’s going to make your reader sit up and pay attention, make them want what you’re offering.

4. Nice package!

Make sure your direct mail package ‘flows’. Do all the elements appear to fit together as though intended? Or does it look like ‘odds and sods’ just thrown together?

5. Read me! Read me!

Does your DM scream read me NOW? Because if it doesn’t, the chances are, it probably won’t be read later either!

6. What’s the first thing you see?

The letter is the most important part of your DM as two thirds of your audience will make a decision based on it – so make sure any other inserts you may have in the envelope come after your letter.

7. Needs, wants and desires. Does your letter acknowledge your audience’s needs?

Your customers will only take an interest in your letter if you recognize their needs and offer them a solution – if there’s nothing in it for them, there won’t be a sale.

8. Why should they?

Your DM must clearly convey why your customers should do business with you. You’ve brought to their attention that they need what you’re offering, now ensure they don’t go elsewhere for it.

9. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Try to avoid filling your direct mail with ‘pretty pictures’ just because you like them – if they have no significance to the copy then they probably shouldn’t be there. Only include images and graphics that improve or support the copy.

10. Just a note

Include a brief outline of your ‘story’ in your reply device. Does your fax-back form, sign-up sheet, or voucher state everything your reader needs to know and clarify what they need to do next?

11. It’s a onetime only offer

Have you given your readers a reason to reply now? It’s best to coax your audience into action now, rather than give them time to go away and forget about it.

12. Reply now!

Have you made it painfully easy for your readers to reply? Be sure to offer every possible option: Phone, fax, email or postal etc. This should increase the number of responses you receive.

13. Would you?

Take a step back and look at your direct mail, or indeed, ask a colleague to take a look at it for a fresh opinion – if you received this through the post would you respond? Whether it’s a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’, consider the reasons for your answer and act accordingly.

14. Go back and re-read the previous 13 tips

Once you have addressed all of the above, go back and check again. You never know maybe you missed something!