Direct mail campaigns can be tricky to pull off, but an A/B strategy for testing can help you get the most out of your campaign. This article examines why it is essential for maximizing return on investment and shares some A/B testing tips for getting started.
Why Does Direct Mail Testing Matter?
When it comes to direct mail campaigns, subtle changes can make a big difference. For example, changing the color scheme of your direct mail pieces can impact how people perceive your message. You may also find that different call-to-action or designs drive higher response rates from your target audience. By doing A/B direct mail testing of these slight variations, you better understand what resonates with your audience and which elements are most effective in driving conversions.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to determine what draws more attention and increases conversion rates is to develop an A/B strategy and execute it frequently. Even if your direct mail marketing campaign is successful, finding continuous improvement opportunities for your mail testing strategy means one thing—more sales.
A/B Testing Tips to Implement in Your Mail Marketing Strategy
When running tests with direct mail pieces, there are some key A/B strategies to keep in mind. First and foremost, keep track of which variable is being tested and ensure you’re consistent in your criteria. Secondly, set realistic goals, so you have something measurable to compare against the results. Finally, give each test sufficient time before drawing any conclusions. Optimizing a campaign and determining the most effective version may take multiple testing cycles.
Change Color Schemes
Choosing a suitable color scheme can significantly impact response rates, so it’s essential to take time and carefully test different combinations. For example, if you want to make sure your direct mail pieces stand out from the competition, try using bright, vibrant colors that will draw attention. If you’re targeting a more sophisticated audience, subtle tones may be better suited for success. Experiment with different color combinations to see which resonates most with your target audience, while avoiding those that reap negative results.
Alter Call to Action (CTA) Language
Pay close attention to the words you choose and their placement within the piece. Consider trying different phrasing and copy sizes to see what drives the most conversions. You can also experiment using a CTA in the headline and the body copy.
Try writing one CTA as a question and another to leverage actionable language. Using a larger font size, test “Ready to Save 20% On Your Next Order?” against “Order Now and Save 20%.” While the overall message remains the same, you can gain valuable insights into which phrasings convert your prospects.
Tinker With the Design of Your Direct Mail Pieces
From fonts and sizes to layouts and imagery, there are many different elements you can play around with to create more effective designs that result in higher response rates. Remember, people generally respond better to visuals than text, so make sure your design is appealing and easy to read.
If you use a multichannel marketing strategy, which you should, seeing what digital marketing approaches are most effective can pay huge dividends. Have an A/B strategy for direct mail testing that looks for statistically significant differences in responses to QR codes, personalized landing pages, and other ways you attempt to entice your mailing list recipients to take the next step.
Try Different Mailer Sizes and Shapes
This is especially important if you have multiple mailers, such as postcards, menus, and flyers. Test out various sizes and shapes to see which capture the most attention and responses from recipients.
The larger or more complex the shape of your mail piece, the more likely it is to stand out in a crowded mailbox. However, that doesn’t guarantee effectiveness. Send out identical pieces in different sizes and shapes to see which performs better. If the results are similar, if not the same, you may be able to reduce your costs by using a small postcard or flier. Likewise, if the bigger, more noticeable size drives more sales, it’s worth the added costs to bring in more revenue.
Postcards typically come in one of three sizes:
- Standard: 4.25” x 6”
- Large: 6” x 9”
- King: 6” x 11”
How to Analyze A/B Strategy Test Results
Analyzing the results of A/B tests can be complicated, but it’s essential for improving future campaigns. To get an accurate picture of performance, consider both response and conversion rates as measures of success. You may also consider using customer surveys or focus groups to gain further insight into customer preferences or perceptions about some aspects of the mail piece.
- Compare the open rates of each mailing piece to determine which mailer is more effective.
- Examine the response rate, or how many people took the desired action after receiving the mailer.
- Track how long it takes recipients to respond to each mailer and compare these timelines.
- Evaluate how much money each mailer brought in through sales or donations.
- Assess the costs associated with producing, printing, and sending out each piece to determine which one is more cost-effective.
- Determine which design elements have a positive impact on readership rates and engagement with the direct mail pieces.
- Measure customer satisfaction by surveying responses from individuals who responded to either version of the campaign.
- Investigate if certain demographics responded better to one version over another.
It’s important to remember that direct mail testing is an ongoing process. Even if you find a winning formula right away, continued optimization efforts are necessary to maximize returns over time. Keep track of past results and use them as a guide when running new tests to improve performance from one cycle to the next consistently.
With Presort Inc. as Your Direct Mail Company, You Have an Expert in A/B Strategy On Your Side
With over three decades of experience as the leading direct mail company in the industry, Presort Inc. can handle all phases of your campaign, from concept to implementation.
And it’s not just direct mail campaign testing we offer to help your business. Our team is here to help you with everything from mailing list services to sorting services that lower your campaign costs. Reach out today to learn how choosing Presort Inc. as your direct mail company simplifies your A/B strategy and increases your chances of a successful campaign.