Marketing Ideas and Interactive Marketing Products For Direct Mail

Response rates generated by promotional pop-up mailers are known to be far in excess of those created by bog-standard leaflets and flyers but what is it about pop-up mailers that make them such a success as direct mailing pieces? The answer lies in one word and that word is “interactive”. Here are some suggestions and ideas for interactive marketing products but first, I should perhaps try to define what I mean by interactive.

“Interactive” is one of those new words that is used a lot in marketing but what exactly is an interactive mailer or interactive marketing product? Let’s try this for an explanation – once the user has opened the promotional mailing pack and has experienced the surprise of the pop-up, the next thing to happen, almost inevitably, is that the pop-up mailer is put back in the pack and the user does it all over again! After that the pop-up mailer is put back in the pack once again and passed to an unsuspecting colleague. When I refer to promotional pop-ups as interactive mailers, that’s what I mean.

Pop-up mailers have a combination of positive attributes that are not always present in standard promotional print. Let’s look at automatic pop-up products as an example. Powered by rubber bands, the various pop-up items all bring with them the element of surprise which inevitably leads to laughter – so they are fun products. That fact alone already puts pop-up mailers higher up the league table that an A4 flyer.

However, not all interactive mailers have a pop-up action – but they still make very successful direct mail pieces. In these instances the interaction might be different but nonetheless, the reader will perform a level interaction with the marketing product which will make a very significant contribution to the success of the campaign.

There are many types of interactive mailers and each has something different to offer that gives them that something extra. It might be the fact that the product has a long desk top life such as promotional penholders, pen pots and desk tidies which stay on desktops for absolutely ages giving your message a very long exposure indeed. Cardboard-engineered pen pots are supplied flat in a size suitable to fit standard envelopes and are erected by one simple interactive push-up action that makes them a popular choice as a promotional mailer.

It could be that the movement fits perfectly with an advertising message. Take interactive marketing products that turn, for example. I don’t think that enough use is made of the humble eyelet in the design of promotional marketing products. The simple task of eyeletting can add car wheels that turn, steering wheels, turning hands on a clock, items that spin such as propellers – all kinds of things – and each with an interactive turning movement.

Another type of mailer has an interactive movement that makes pictures change. These promotional advertising products are known as dissolvers and are heaven-sent for a multitude of advertisers. The old classic theme of “before” and “after” pictures is brought up-to-date by these tremendously interactive advertising products. Absolutely everything is down to the smooth way in which, by the simple interactive pull of a card, the picture at the focus of all your attention changes from one scene to another.

Or how about interactive marketing products that jump. Promotional products in the “Jack in a box” or “Crackerjack” style offer much more of a surprise than you would ever imagine from the size of the pack. They have a very high and instant impact and are very successful at drawing attention to any campaign. Even when the person opening the pack knows exactly what is going to happen next you will see that they open the pack with some trepidation – being wary of the crackerjack effect.

Assuming that the advertising and marketing agencies have done their jobs well and assuming that the direct marketing team are sending the interactive mailer only to serious business-to-business sales prospects then you have a winning formula for a successful promotional mailing campaign.

Marketing Ideas – Promotional Marketing Products From a Cardboard Engineering Background

Coming up with new advertising and marketing ideas can be difficult. Creative professionals might go to many different sources of reference for inspiration. Inspiration for many campaigns is to be found in movement and my suggestion is to start your search by looking at promotional marketing products that provide movement.

Promotional marketing products and interactive pop up mailers can provide an innovative solution to many advertising problems and can prompt countless creative advertising ideas. When you are looking for promotional print with a difference, maybe a printed advertising product with that bit of something extra or maybe a promotional mailer that can give your direct marketing campaign a lift – then pop-ups and interactive mailers with interesting and clever movements are the products to prompt the sparks that develop into creative advertising ideas.

Pop-Up Products and Interactive Marketing Products Prompt Fresh Advertising Ideas

Vibrant pop-up and interactive products can set your mind buzzing with creative advertising ideas. The high impact characteristics and vitality of automatic rubber-band powered pop-up products alone present countless opportunities for the creative processes to get to work. For instance, all automatic pop-up marketing products are designed to jump to life as soon as your customer opens the pack. The very action throws lots of creative advertising ideas and suggestions into the air – growth, life, fun, surprise, bounce, vitality, energy, action – how many suggestions for fresh advertising ideas do you need?

Unique, Innovative Marketing Ideas

Translating unique and innovative marketing ideas into an actual marketing campaign is quite definitely an art! Promotional pop up products can help you transform innovative marketing ideas into reality. Imaginative use of paper and cardboard engineering techniques is the key to making a unique pop-up marketing product. Applying an innovative marketing idea to the movement in that pop up product can be the key to creating a highly individual piece of promotional marketing. From there onwards, the application of professional marketing skills can transform that initial marketing idea into a successful promotional marketing campaign.

These types of promotional products will help you to produce an extremely successful promotional mail shot or an array of promotional print options such as exhibition giveaways; magazine cover mounts and corporate event invitations.

Pop-Up Movement and New Creative Marketing Ideas

New creative marketing ideas start with a spark of imagination. That spark could be generated by virtually anything – music, colour or movement for example. But if movement is the key, then what pop up movements are available to set you on the way to having those all-important creative marketing ideas to translate into your unique promotional mailer? There are interactive marketing products that turn; pictures that disappear and change; pop-ups which jump; pocket media full of fun folds – and each one creating a very tactile and interactive promotional marketing product. All that you need is that initial spark, that innovative creative marketing idea to start the ball rolling.

There are several reasons why promotional marketing products prove to be so popular within the advertising and marketing community. From a creative point of view it is that the products are so versatile, lending themselves so readily to so many new creative marketing ideas, ideas that can jump, ideas that can grow, ideas that can turn and so on. However, the main reason for the popularity of the products is that the results are so very successful. Everyone who has ever been involved in a business-to-business direct mail campaign knows the result of pinning big hopes on a bog-standard leaflet or flyer. It might appear to be relatively inexpensive but in all likelihood a very high percentage will be bin-bound! That has proved not to be the case with promotional products that originate from a cardboard engineering background.

Discover Your Web Market From the Inside Out

For you to see web marketing in a different light I first need to introduce a new picture of the web, and then a different understanding of web marketing can emerge. Following that introduction this article can then talk about what is important about social media, along with beliefs and values, as they pertain to search engines and web marketing.

In the mid 90’s a lot of media pundits were trying to say what the Internet, and more specifically the web, was all about – but no one really knew. Some compared it to television and some compared it to newspapers and others said it was most like the telephone because it behaved like a one-to- one communication media.

It looked like television because of the screen similarity, and it looked like newspapers because of the text content, and it acted like a phone conversation in how it behaved as a one-to- one communication media.

All of these different metaphors missed the primary difference that the web brought into being and that was the search engine. Without a search engine the web would be as useless as a library without index cards. It would be a tangled mess of invisible and unsorted web sites, and the great pool of information would largely be invisible.

Search engines ground the web into a usable reality through the written word when a search is conducted, and then search engines became the eyes of web users for finding their way around in the depths and darkness of billions of web pages.

Search engines give us social media

In the same way that you and I search for information others search for other people and find their groups to belong to. Just as the search engines make finding specific information a reality they also make it possible for groups to form and for people to find the group they have affinity with.

How do people find their groups? How do they search? And why do we need to know how this works in order to develop a web marketing strategy?

Deep Pockets

If your business has deep pockets then you can use contemporary marketing research methods by conducting expensive testing with market research firms. But what if you don’t have deep pockets? And what if your market is anonymous like the web market is? What options do you have?

As you are probably aware, a web market does not provide you with demographic data to help you target a market. Until a visitor to your web site has decided to contact you they remain anonymous and you do not know a thing about them in terms of marketing information. How could you even conduct a proper test if you do not have any boundaries to work within?

Your web market is an intangible, yet very real market. Your web site is simply on a fishing expedition with your keyword signals that you are using for bait. What does your market feed on and what should your keywords be?

Who is your market and where are they?

Are you going to throw your line into the big pond with all your competition and fish with popular keywords for bait? You have to wonder if your market is really in the big pond, especially if you are looking for a niche market. How can you possibly find your market without very deep pockets? And what if you are fishing in the wrong pond with the wrong bait?

I suppose, with enough time and experience, you will find out which pond to fish in and what keywords your market feeds on, but this could take years of gathering information and hours of analysis. And even then you may still be guessing.

Turn the focus inward

So far I have asked external questions and the answers you would get back are not the answers you want to hear. What keywords to use? Where to find your market? Who are they and where are they? The answers are all the same… more testing and keyword research.

What if you turned the questions inward instead? What if you asked questions you already have the answers for? Suppose you asked yourself what you value the most about your business? What is your attitude toward your market? What gives you the greatest sense of reward in running your business?

Answer those questions and you’ve got the beginnings of a marketing strategy to send signals to your market – and let them find you.

On the web, this makes finding your market easier than by using demographics because the search engines do the work for you. For those that have difficulty leaving factual data behind they could use demographic keywords and try to signal income levels, for example, but your business values will cover more ground and work better.

Why do values work on the web?

On the web people find their groups. News Groups were one of the first social networks long before they were called social networks, and people found their groups by the values they shared. The same is true for Facebook, MySpace and YouTube. Add to this list other web connections like blogs and article sources and you see that the web is a unique media for sharing values.

If you prefer to market yourself in true fashion to who you are then you would need to look on the inside of who you are and the values you hold. This sounds easier than it is, and yet it is all about integrity in marketing. In either method you need to play with psychological values, or you need to hire a marketing shrink to sort it out for you.

You can see why most web marketers are sticking to the demographic style of marketing because it feels more tangible even though the web as a medium is anything but tangible.

We’ve discussed briefly why demographic marketing has difficulty dealing with anonymous web users, and why looking inward can provide a marketing strategy to target anonymous market segments.