Direct Mail | Does It Really Work? Part 1

direct mail for window cleanersI once wrote a 1200 word essay on direct mail postcards for a client. It’s sad that I had so much to say on the topic. What’s even worse is that I had to edit it DOWN because I just had too much to say. Yes, this is my life. It’s what happens when you own a window cleaning business for close to two decades.

In my opinion, direct mail postcards are the “next step”. When you are a newbie, you start with fliers, something simple that you can print cheaply at home. You can mail them to your existing customers or you can do what’s called  “10-10-20”. Realtors use this trick often. When you clean the windows at one house, send a note to 10 houses to the left, 10 to the right and the 20 across the street. Spend five minutes before you leave and jot down the addresses by hand. It takes a minute, but it’s free.

And, when I say send, I mean via the post office. Do not leave them stuck on the front door, the mailbox flag, the windshield wiper or anywhere else you think is cool. Most homeowners hate this and get frustrated later in the day when they see them blowing down the street like common trash. And, FYI, it is actually illegal in many municipalities in Michigan for this very reason. I am sure the same rules apply in other states as well.

So, what do you say in this flier? In my years of experience, two things worked very well for a simple flier.

1) Tell them that you just cleaned the neighbor’s windows and you would love the opportunity to clean theirs as well. People like to use companies that their neighbors use. We had subdivisions where we did every house on the street, which was awesome for scheduling.

2) If it is one of those subdivisions where every house is the same (or close), spell out your price. This may seem to go against the grain of traditional business thinking, but try it. For some reason, people are under the mistaken impression that window cleaning is very expensive. In fact, when we printed right on the flier what the cost was ($60 out only, $120 in and out – for example), we had close to a 10% response, which is huge! People think that because it would take THEM all weekend to clean the windows that it MUST be super pricey. I frequently had people call just to ask if it was a misprint.

 

 

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