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NMOA Direct Marketing Article
Promote Wisely With Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) and QR Code Technology
By Ben Fellowes

Over the past 12 months we've seen a dramatic upswing in the number of companies incorporating QR codes into their layouts for postcard mailers and event flyers, and most recently a rise in combining QR codes with the use of a relatively new service offering from the USPS - Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM). The QR code offers the easiest path from smart phone to web visit, and Every Door Direct Mail offers an easy, low cost way for both awareness and direct response campaigns. The combination of these two new services represents a major new strategy for small businesses to maximize their local marketing reach and company visibility.

In the perfect marketing scenario, a small business owner uses EDDM direct mail services to successfully engage every single homeowner in their immediate area with a QR optimized postcard. The effect is immediate. From mailbox - to customer - to device, there is a direct path from print promotion to customer action; with new smart technologies a customer is able to transfer location directions to someone’s phone, send them to a review page, navigate them to an online menu, or perform any number of web functions.

Here is an outline of these two services and how they can work to successfully promote a business:

Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM)

Is a really cheap direct mailing service that targets by location rather than person. The service is offered by the regular US Post Office and works on a really simple level - the postman delivers a postcard to every house on their postal route. It’s a completely indiscriminate way to target customers and is particularly effective for restaurants, auto dealers, clothing stores, and other businesses that rely on walk-in custom.

The major benefits are as follows:

• Cheap Price
EDDM postcards and flyers are just 14.5˘ compared to traditional direct mailers that cost an average of 75˘ per piece
• Send Large Postcards
The price of 14.5˘ can be applied to ANY size of mailer – meaning that as long as you keep within the postal size guidelines, you can send poster-sized postcards
• No Postage Permit
Businesses don’t need the expensive postage permit that is needed for traditional direct mailing that can cost as much as $450 just to set up!
• No Mailing List
No complex individual address targeting, therefore, no expensive mailing list required

QR Codes

You’ve probably seen them by now, but for those who are still not sure what a QR code is, a QR code is a square barcode that can be added to any magazine, book, or print design to form a bridge between the print and digital world. It carries within it visual data that enables smart devices to link to web pages and carry-out functions automatically.

As long as the viewer has a QR reader application on their phone, they can take a picture of the QR code and the encoded information can be used to automatically trigger a range of actions on the user’s device, including:

• View a webpage, special offer or video
• Dial a number
• Send a text
• Send an email
• View a map location in a device
• View a social media profile

This technology represents an almost instant transfer of function or information from the printed page to a mobile device. The benefits for businesses such as take-out restaurants are obvious. Given the ability to have the customer call their business without having to type a number, or view a menu without the need to enter a url is such a powerful marketing advantage.

One of the coolest things about QR code technology is that it’s mostly free technology! Businesses can go to hundreds of sites online (such as mobile-barcodes.com and zxing) or add a plugin to their browsers to generate their QR graphic.

The EDDM/QR Combo

Now imagine these two essential new marketing tools coming together in a local mailing campaign! The results are extremely effective! As a print company we urge customers to utilize as many of the latest marketing tools that are available to them to help them grow and achieve better business success (it behooves us for our customers to become successful with their print campaigns and place more orders!)

For local businesses that don’t have big budgets, using EDDM to deliver a print promotion and utilizing QR codes to ensure customers act upon the promotion is essential. If you’re planning your own local direct mail campaign or you want to try something new, we advise that you look to EDDM and QR code technology to maximize your marketing efforts.

About the Author:
Ben Fellowes works at NextDayFlyers and is a writer and print marketing expert with over 5 years experience in the marketing industry. Obsessive about design, advertising and marketing, he loves nothing more than to design postcards, flyers, business cards and other print products.

 

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