3 Steps to a Better Targeting Plan

Photo by cliff106We’ve talked about targeting in the previous post and how it’s done for a front-door campaign. In general, though, leveraging available consumer information, whether third-party or in-house, is one of the most important steps in a campaign.

Here, we share three steps you can take to creating a better targeting plan for your next campaign.
 
1. Start with the right strategy
Take a moment to understand how you are reaching your customers. If it’s through the front door, then evaluate whether your message will resonate in the same way that it does via a television commercial. Ask questions: What do we hope to achieve? Can we make a unique, high-value offer specifically for the front door? Is the offer compelling enough to drive ideal customers to action?
 
2. Leverage existing customer information
Many brands already have well-developed customer profiles, created from either internally managed sources or response data from previous campaigns. Leverage this information to create a unique profile for your campaign. Doing so will allow you to identify any new learnings from the campaign and enables you to track these customers and their behaviors more accurately. Furthermore, data modeling of this customer data can help find “look-alikes” and even predict future behavior.
 
3. Add other quality data sources
If you don’t have years of curated internal customer data, then use third-party resources. Resources like Nielsen Claritas, Simmons, and the US Postal Service provide demographic, behavior, and purchasing data that helps you further understand your target audience. Also, be certain to use up-to-date information, such as in the case of the Census demographic information.
 
What are some other ways you’ve improved your targeting plan? Share with us your ideas in the comments below.
 

Are You Targeting At the Right Level?

A look at  DMA, zip code, and block group level targeting

Can you visualize who receives your marketing message? Is it 10,000 people or just 100?

Prior to the skillful targeting capabilities applied today, front-door media, like other many other media, was delivered based on zip code or even DMA market saturation. That meant everyone within a zip code (approximately 13,000 households) or a market would receive the same media message regardless of demographic importance or project objective. However, by abandoning this type of approach and moving to the use of US Census block groups — census-defined territories consisting of 100 to 400 households–marketers can now define and execute extremely targeted distributions.

How targeted are we talking about? Here’s a simple map illustration of the difference between targeting at the DMA, zip code, or block group levels.

DMA-ZipCode-Block-Group

And here’s a more detailed look at the difference between the zip code and block group levels.

Block-Group-ZipCode

How are you currently targeting your ideal customers? Is your message targeted enough to help achieve your marketing goals?

Why Print Media Isn’t Dead, According to Forbes

Print-Isnt-DeadAccording to this recent article from Forbes, print media is far from dead–it’s still a powerful and necessary component of any ad campaign.

Read the full article here, and here are some of the main benefits–all of which we agree with!–of the print media that makes it a strong contender in today’s marketing world.

  • Tangibility – The physical nature of print media increases its longevity, a direct contrast to the ephemeral nature of online ads.
  • Credibility – A sense of legitimacy is still inherent with print media. Unlike online ads which have spawned a fear for spam and viruses, there’s no danger posed with print media.
  • Target Marketing – The variety of print media options means you can target and reach any specific audience, no matter how niche.
  • More Engaging – Websites and online ads are skimmed, usually within 15 seconds. On the other hand, print media is tangible and thus, more engaging.

Are you currently using print media in your ad campaigns and, if so, what advantages have you seen over other media channels?

5 Terms to Help You Evaluate Your Front-Door Program and Partner

Defining-Front-Door-MarketingOver the years, we’ve worked with a multitude of clients within various industries, all of whom have needed some education, in some form, in front-door marketing. Instead of providing all of our sales collateral and presentations, we’ve listed five key terms (and their definitions according to PowerDirect) to help you frame a better understanding of front-door marketing, and how to evaluate future front-door partners.

1. Front-Door Marketing
(noun) A highly specialized and measurable discipline that uses creative, precisely targeted media to reach and engage consumers through one of the last uncluttered environments — their front door.

Contrary to popular opinion, front-door marketing isn’t just door hangers. Polybags, boxes, and express envelopes are among the different print materials and construction that can be delivered to the front door. In front-door marketing, the focus is on the uncluttered space, rather than the media type. Your front-door partner should be able to develop any type of front-door program for you — and not just using door hangers.

2. Block Groups
(noun) Formally known as US Census Block Groups, these are Census-defined territories of approximately 100 to 400 households, and typically smaller than a zipcode, which includes approximately 13,000 households.

Block group targeting and delivery is unique to front-door marketing because it allows for extremely targeted and efficient distribution, while still providing enough market coverage. Ask your front-door partner at what level they target and deliver (DMA, CBSA, zipcode, or block group) to determine overall program efficiency.

3. Reco or Counts
(noun) Short for “recommendations” and “household counts”, these data sheets outline the program’s targeting recommendation based on specific consumer demographics

Recos and counts are a good demonstration of a partner’s targeting capabilities and experience. What typically happens in the targeting analytics process is that the front-door partner will rank all the block groups in your desired market based on your ideal customer profile (or specific demographics) and select the “best block groups” for your campaign. Ask your front-door partner for counts or recos in a specific market; your front-door partner should be able to provide you with recommendations that include not only demographic, but also psychographic and expenditure information.

4. GPS Delivery
(noun) Delivery that can be tracked and verified via a global positioning system

The use of GPS technology varies across the front-door marketing industry. What doesn’t vary is the back-end reporting and analysis of the GPS “maps”, which log GPS coordinates and movements on a satellite map image. Ask your front-door partner to provide you with a post-campaign GPS map and analysis. Their GPS teams should be able to provide you with information on how fast the delivery occurred, any indications of abnormalities in delivery, and a grade for the overall delivery.

5. Overages
(noun) Block groups that are similar to program-selected block groups, and have been identified as “contingency” zones in the case that program-selected block groups cannot be delivered to.

Overages are basically contingency areas. Most front-door marketing companies recognize that not every city is a perfect delivery zone. Geographical limitations may prohibit delivery in certain block groups; thus, overages will address this challenge. Ask your front-door partner what limitations they have on delivery and what their policy is to address these limitations.

Are there any other front-door marketing terms you’ve encountered and don’t have a definition for? We’ll be happy to help you define them; just leave your comments below!

The 5 Most Common Myths About Front-Door Marketing

Truth-Myths-Front-Door-MarketingTo be frank, when we say “door hangers”, there are certain perceptions attached to the media. Yet which of these perceptions are true and which are actually just myths? Learn the 5 most common myths about front-door marketing and door hangers, and the truths about consumer perceptions, delivery, and dumping.

Myth #1  Door hangers are a flimsy, low-quality media for mom-and-pop shops, not major brands.
The truth? While door hangers have historically been perceived as cheap and used by small pizza and laundry-mat chains, today’s door hangers are nothing like their predecessors. PowerDirect’s industry-leading standards have reinvented the media into a large format size (5.5” x 17”) that is printed on quality stock, and is visually impactful. Fortune 500 clients like Comcast, Clorox, and Verizon have recognized the value of the media and regularly employ it as part of their marketing campaigns.

Myth #2  During delivery, delivery crews dump the door hangers into the trash.
The truth? Dumping used to be an industry problem, but the introduction of technologies like GPS and dedicated auditing teams have minimized dumping issues. Furthermore, having worked with our delivery teams for more than 10 years, PowerDirect has trained and educated the delivery teams to meet our exacting distribution standards.

Myth #3  People don’t like door hangers, and response rates are dismal.
The truth? Less than 1% of all calls received through our Customer Service line are opt-outs from people who don’t want to receive door hanger advertisements. As for the response, while the industry average varies due to the different delivery standards, PowerDirect’s clients have seen response rates between 1% – 2% and usually greater than other comparable direct mail or solo mail efforts.

Myth #4  I don’t want to deal with all the consumer complaints.
The truth? Our policy is to direct all consumer inquiries, including complaints, to our in-house Customer Service team. Our team handles all opt-outs (usually less than 1% of all calls), requests for additional door hangers (yes, we do get these very often!), and miscellaneous inquiries. Aside from our phone support team, our in-field Auditors also deal with any field issues as they occur. 

Myth #5  Door hangers are more expensive than other print media.
The truth? The pricing for front-door media will vary depending on the media type (door hangers, polybags, boxes, etc.), but we’ve found that our pricing is very comparable to solo mail. We’ve also found that the ROI for front-door media campaigns are higher than other print media because front-door marketing, delivered to one of the last uncluttered spaces, successfully engages consumers. 

What other myths have you heard about door hangers or front-door marketing? Leave your comments, and we’ll add them to the list!