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You've got influencer mail: Achieve your campaign goals with personalized mailers
October 21, 2022
Direct mail delivered by the Post in the digital age is not what most businesses think of when it comes to influencer marketing, but it's a medium capable of satisfying all three main influencer types. Done correctly, direct mailers can help a business achieve a variety of campaign goals.
Think beyond simple mass mail
While mass mail is a component of a successful direct marketing campaign, it's necessary to add a degree of personalization in order to rise above the noise of everyday glossy advertisements. My favorite handwriting tool to accomplish this piece is Handwrytten. Handwrytten invented their own handwriting robots that can learn a marketer's handwriting style and use it in creating hyper-personalized materials. It even integrates with major platforms such as Salesforce, Hubspot, and Zapier, so it can be become part of the overall marketing automation process.
Using a tool like Handwrytten, let's explore how we could dial in some interesting campaigns for each major influencer type.
Local celebrities providing star struck outreach
Since the key to a successful direct marketing campaign is proper geographic targeting, it lends itself to the possibility of using local celebrities as a mechanism for achieving aspirational influence for a fraction of the cost of what a national celebrity might charge. The concept works similarly to billboards by co-opting the local aspirational influence initially by visual recognition, which causes the recipient of the mailer to pause while mentally registering the identity of the influencer.
Next, as this is a marketing automation campaign, the local celebrity should address the recipient by their name in a handwritten note that explains the reason for the outreach. Given these are legitimately handwritten notes in the actual style of the celebrity, there is a certain novelty which should keep the prospect engaged to the end of the note.
An ideal use case for this would be auto dealerships using a local sports star that has used the dealership in the past, sending the note to others in his or her city and touching on why they used the dealership in the past. Furthermore, the note could address the compulsion felt to reach out and suggest others do the same. Apparently, Handwrytten has an integration specifically for auto dealers, so it's probably even easier than how I'm describing.
Experts can pair data to prove a point
Geo-specific targeting implies specific municipalities are the focus. This is important for the authoritative influencer use type because one way experts show they are experts is by the use of informed data. The concept that works best for this is similar to what one might find in a niche expert YouTube channel.
As an example, let's say a solar installer wanted to prove their sales pitch to targets. Using publicly accessible data for roof configurations by area size and orientation paired with both expected sunlight conditions for that municipality and energy costs over that period, a simple data table could be created.
Once the data is gathered, the solar installer could send out the hyper-personalized letters to prospective buyers that emphasizes exactly how much in savings might be possible, showing literal back-of-the-napkin math on investment payback with a simple close to the sales attempt that includes contact information and a discount to mention when calling in.
Receiving a handwritten cost breakdown that very clearly understands the specifics of a property and the underlying economics is an impressive feat and not one that can be easily dismissed as postal spam. It's targeted, immediately highlights expertise, and is actionable.
Neighbors looking out for neighbors
Perhaps one of the easiest approaches is that of the peer influencer use type for mailers. Absent personalization, local advertisements are still quite effective in letting recipients know of new neighborhood restaurants and services. To work even better, we want to target a group of people similarly to how we might with Facebook groups created for a township.
This can, of course, be taken further with the handwritten messages to achieve hyper-personalization on top of that hyper-geographic targeting. Imagine a local chef at a new restaurant writing a letter personally inviting potential patrons to visit the establishment and to receive a free appetizer.
Such outreach conveys warmth through the invitation. Additionally, it is obviously targeted, given the small geographic focus. Finally, the outreach is actionable. Who doesn't like free food from a personal invitation? The chef in this case can be perceived as essentially acting as an authoritative influencer.
By tweaking the process slightly, imagine local patrons are chosen to act as the influencer. In the United States, many of us live in regulated neighborhoods governed by what is known as home owners associations (HOA). If board members of these HOAs are first targeted for a free meal in exchange for writing the letters to all the members of the communities they govern, then one can see the power of micro influencers at scale.
Perhaps 2023 will be the year of taking your digital marketing back to the mailbox.