Many people who set up an Internet based affiliate marketing business tend to focus all their marketing efforts on online promotion and neglect off-line marketing techniques altogether. This is a pity because there are many excellent ways to promote a website or an affiliate program off-line as well as online.
One such method is direct mail marketing. The great advantage of promoting your business by direct mail is that you can very accurately measure the results of your marketing efforts. Many affiliate programs include attractive promotional postcards as part of their marketing portfolio. Promotional postcards allow affiliate marketers to run their own direct marketing campaigns without the hassle or expense of writing their own copy. Promotional postcards can be bought in bulk from the affiliate company at attractive prices and posted in bulk for cheap rates at the post office.
Some affiliate marketing companies may also supply their marketers with the names and addresses of leads, so all they have to do is address the postcards, add their affiliate code and drop them in the mail box.
Another option for more ambitious marketers is to obtain the services of a list broker and purchase a list of people who have responded to offers in the same niche market as your affiliate business. This kind of list is called a “response list” and it will consist of several thousand names and addresses. At this stage you do not want to send your postcards to every address on the list. Instead you need to run a test mailing to see how responsive the list actually is to your offer.
It would be a good idea to check with your post office to find out the minimum number of cards you need to send to benefit from their bulk shipping rates. You will want to send several hundred postcards in order to get a reasonably accurate result. Another point to consider is the amount of time you will need to allow for people to respond. Two months is a reasonable amount of time, although you may get a trickle of responses coming in even after that amount of time.
Now you need to work out the total cost of your mailing and divide that by the number of leads you received, and/or measure it against the total sales that were generated. If the finances work out in your favor, you can now roll out your postcards to the rest of the list and feel reasonably confident that you will get a good result. On the other hand, if you have lost money it may be that you need to more closely define your target market. Contact your broker and see if you can exchange your list for another one that is more tightly defined, or find a different broker and try again.
Prewritten postcards for affiliate marketers are a cheap way to get into direct mail marketing however, there is one big disadvantage to using prewritten postcards in this sort of campaign. They do not give you the scope for running a split test. Split tests are a great way for marketers to improve their results over time. If you’re affiliate marketing company only offers one type of promotional postcard you won’t be able to run a split test.
On the other hand, if you design your own postcards you can easily make two versions each one with a different catch copy on it, and each one pointed to a different squeeze page on your website. Test the cards by sending out 500 copies of each version and see which squeeze page gets more signups to discover which postcard is more effective. You will want to keep that postcard and drop the loser. But don’t stop there. Now you will want to replace the loser with another card with a different catch copy on it to compete against the winner and run a second split test. Each time keep the winner and replace the loser.
You could apply to a similar split testing technique to your list brokers until you find the ideal combination of the most effective postcard and the most responsive list. That way your marketing efforts will gradually yield better and better results. You will then be able to duplicate in growing your downline to achieve dynamic affiliate marketing success.