Frequently Asked Marketing Questions
- What is direct mail?
- What makes direct mail effective?
- What is a typical list rental transaction?
- What costs go into a mailing?
- How often should I mail?
- What is NCOALink® processing?
- What is a Cable Append?
- What is Telephone Append?
- What is the DNC (Do Not Call) Suppression?
- How often do I need to scrub or match my file against the Do Not Call / DNC List?
- What is Deceased Suppression?
- What is CASS Processing?
- What is LACSLink®?
- What is DSF2 / DPV?
- What is Address Element Correction?
- What is Phantom Finder - Patented process!
- What is List Profiling?
What is direct mail?
We all get direct mail to our homes, businesses, etc. Whether it’s a postcard or letter, any type of advertising delivered by the US Postal Service is considered direct mail.
What makes direct mail effective?
Direct Mail Is…….
Tangible: Direct mail is not like any other form of advertising in that you can you can hold it in your hand and respond to it in numerous ways.
Targeted: If you choose your mailing list wisely, your recipient should have some interest in your product or service.
Personal: Direct mail is the purest form of one-to-one marketing.
Effective: If done right, direct mail is extremely effective, and because you can track the results, it’s easy to determine what works and what doesn’t work.
Flexible: You can mail 100, 1,000, or 1,000,000 pieces, choosing from dozens of formats and sizes, whenever you want.
Cost Effective: When you compare direct mail to other media, it can seem expensive in terms of how much it costs to reach a single customer. However, the net cost of reaching the right consumer or business, it can be very cost effective.
What is a typical list rental transaction?
As list experts, we specialize in the research and recommending lists for you. We also handle all of the paperwork and other details in renting a list.
We help you find new lists, identify profitable segments on unlikely lists, help you create a matrix for testing your mailing against other lists, negotiate the best prices for you, recommend other media (such as e-mail) to consider testing, and deliver the list to your lettershop on time.
1. You talk to one of our experienced sales representatives who are specialized data and mailing list experts.
2. You describe your organization’s mission, including what your company does, who you target, and what your marketing goals are.
3. You describe your ideal customer. For example, female, 45 years or order, married, home owner, income of $90,000 or more, has an interest in gardening, and lives in one of 3 states. Your list selections criteria can be very specific or very generalized.
4. You discuss with your sales rep the list selection criteria and quantity of data you need.
5. We prepare the list, typically within ONE hour, and send it to you, your Lettershop, or service bureau.
Keep in mind, we know the list industry. Our clients constantly research and test thousands of lists. Working with a qualified and experienced list broker is vital to the success of your marketing campaign.
What costs go into a mailing?
For a typical direct mail campaign, the following make up the majority your costs.
Copywriting and Graphic Design: If you don’t write the copy yourself, you’ll hire a professional. The same goes with the graphic design elements.
Printing: Printing has come a long way in the past 10 years. Printing costs have come down, and the quality and selection of print options have increased. Still, the print costs and postage remain the biggest piece of a direct mail budget.
Mailing List Rental: If you’re mailing to your customer list, there are no costs other than updating your customer’s information. I.E. NCOALink processing, postal qualifying, postal presort, etc. If you are renting a list, your cost will vary based on the type of list your renting, anywhere from 1 cent to 50 cents per piece. When you’re pricing out your list, prices are based on $ dollars per thousand records rented. For example: A list that costs $30./M = thirty dollars per thousand records. If you’re renting 10,000 records, your cost would be $300. 10 x $30. = $300.00
Keep in mind, the mailing list is often one of the least expensive pieces of the mailing, yet it is also one of the most important pieces. Regardless of how great your creative may be, if you’re mailing to the wrong audience, your mailing will fail.
Data Processing Services: DP services can include removing duplicate records, merging two or more lists, key coding records, preparing the final output, printing labels, postal qualifying the addresses, etc. These services can be preformed by our Lettershop or our Data Processing department.
Lettershop Services: Now that you have the mail piece printed and you have your list, you now need to get the names on the piece and get them in the mail. Lettershop services include affixing the labels or ink-jetting the addresses to the mail piece, folding and stuffing the envelopes, and delivering the mail to the US Postal Service.
How often should I mail?
The only way to answer this question is by testing. Very often, response rates increase with multiple mailings, even with the same direct mail piece. Obviously, you would not mail numerous times if you are trying to generate store traffic for a sale next week. Multiple mailings are beneficial for these reasons
Multiple mailings indicate the marketer has staying power and is not a fly-by-night company.
You sometimes need to repeat to get your message across. A rule of thumb, to get 3 to 4 ad impressions for each person in your target audience in a relatively short period of time.
Be there when a customer is ready to buy. Timing is everything. Just because you mailed this week, doesn’t mean the customer is ready to buy. Keep your message in front of your prospective customers so that your company is visible when your customer is ready to buy.
Some lists are rented for multiple use, and some are for one time use. Check with your sales representative as to the usage permitted for your list.
What is NCOALink processing?
CAS Inc., is a non-exclusive licensee for the USPS Limited Service Provider NCOALink. In addition to 18 months of Move Update information and USPS Return Codes, we are pleased to offer DPV as part of our standard NCOALink offering. Over 40 million Americans change addresses annually. NCOALink 18 Month matches mailing list addresses to 18 months of change of address information for families, individuals and businesses.
This data is updated weekly. NCOALink 48 Month / DMA / LACSLink / DPV CAS is pleased to offer the DMA Mail Preference Service suppression flag, LACSLink updates, and DPV as part of our standard NCOALink offering. Over 40 million Americans change addresses annually. Move48 (NCOALink) matches mailing list addresses to 48 months of change of address information for families, individuals and businesses.
What is a Cable Append?
In cases where your house or prospect file contains only residential street addresses, this service can match the street address and return a name and/or telephone number based on your choice. Match rates vary based on input records age. Charges for Cable Append are based on the number of records matched for Name and number of records matched for Telephone plus a file input passing charge or minimum.
What is Telephone Append?
CAS' phone append software increases phone number accuracy for more effective telemarketing. Records are processed against FOUR of the largest compiled databases in the country, all in one step. No other company can touch the match rates and quality of our phone append services.
The second step runs the non-matched records through our Directory Assistance phone append database. This database, updated weekly, consists of every household and business in the US. From this file, we carry up to 7 numbers per record, helping to increase matches on the verification process.
The third step runs all non-matched records through our Daily New Connects and Disconnects. Match rates are typically lower from the third pass, however these records are the freshest and most up to date. To learn more about Phone Append Processing, CLICK HERE.
How often do I need to scrub or match my file against the Do Not Call / DNC List?
The National Do Not Call DNC list requires you to scrub your list every 30 (thirty) days to maintain it's up to date status.
However, individual states have their own regulations, so check with the states you're calling to make sure you are staying up to date. Keep in mind, CAS maintains all available State and Federal do not call lists to be used in the DNC scrub processing. To learn more about Do Not Call Processing, CLICK HERE.
What is the DNC (Do Not Call) Suppression?
Privacy is a hot topic and keeping up with the legislative changes can be a time consuming job. CAS takes the privacy worry out of your hands for both your Telemarketing and Direct Mailing campaigns. We maintain and update the National FTC Do-Not-Call file, various state Do-Not-Call lists, the DMA Telephone Preference Service (TPS) file and the DMA Pander file. These records are suppressed automatically to ensure that your marketing efforts conform to all Federal and State legislation.
CAS will continue adding Do-Not-Call records as they become available and do everything in our power to keep up with the rapidly advancing legislation. However, it is advisable that you also ensure that your marketing efforts meet all Federal and State legislation, and that you contact your own legal counsel before acting on any information regarding Federal and State laws, or regulations. To learn more about Do Not Call DNC processing, CLICK HERE.
What is Deceased Suppression?
Sending direct mail to the recently deceased adds insult to injury for the remaining members of a household. For others, it can create active hostility toward your company. It is a common complaint and it is impossible to quantify the emotional distress suffered by the surviving members of the family and/or friends.
Not only is this practice bad manners, but it is also bad for business. These useless mailings are not just a waste of time and money, but are also a hindrance to your company's reputation. Let CAS identify deceased customers/prospects using its database of over 36 million records. CAS can screen your entire file instantly and those customers/prospects that are deceased.
What is CASS Processing?
CASS processed addresses verifies whether or not an address is an actual valid address. On average, CASS processed addresses will code 3.96% of a file as bad / non-deliverable addresses.
What is LACSLink?
LACSLink Corrects address lists for areas that have undergone permanent address conversion. The LACSLink database consists of address conversions that the USPS has obtained and verified, primarily a result of 911 address conversions.
What is DSF2 / DPV?
Using an EXACT address database from the USPS, DSF2 verifies whether or not an address is an actual valid address.
What is Address Element Correction?
(AEC Address Element Correction): Takes the addresses, as coded by CASS-Certified Address Matching Software and adds the address element(s) to make them deliverable addresses. On average, AEC will update 1.53% of a file.
What is Phantom Finder - Patented process!
This product identifies prospects on a mailing list that are less than ideal candidates to respond to a direct mail campaign. Through a CAS proprietary negative merge / purge process Phantom Finder can identify and flag prospects that are not "who they appear" to be.
With direct mail expenses continuing to increase and with mail security becoming a prevalent issue, it makes more sense than ever to direct your mailing efforts to the "right person". No longer will marketers have to worry about their personalized marketing message getting into the wrong hands. Fewer wasted marketing messages, less waste of expensive marketing materials and lower postage costs, all combine for a higher return on investment.
Phantom Finder can assure that your marketing promotion is delivered to the right person the first time. CAS has developed Phantom Finder using the highest quality aggregated multi-sourced consumer database in the industry, ConsumerVision. Combined with our proprietary negative merge/ purge technology (patent pending), CAS can add that missing ingredient, "confidence" to your direct mail campaign. Phantom Finder is an essential component for any size or type of direct mail campaign.
Offered exclusively from CAS!
What is List Profiling?
How much do you know about your current customers? CAS utilizes our "in house" national consumer database of over 200 million records, with over 500 demographic and psychographic elements. We'll match to your customer list and provide a penetration analysis of household-level demographic elements such as Age, Income, Ethnicity, Occupation, Marital Status and Gender in a professionally designed report. You will then be ready to target additional prospects with similar profiles and improve your response rates!
You can always send us an email with your questions or call us directly at 866-461-4693.
Data Experts are here to help.