How to Use Data Driven Marketing Images in Your Messages

A standard rule of thumb in direct data driven marketing is that the copy in a communication is what sells, not the images. The offer and the call to action need to be explicitly stated. But that’s not to say that images don’t have their place.

How to use data driven marketing to integrate your advertising campaign messages

The first challenge in marketing to consumers is to make them aware that you exist. Much of your company’s marketing budget is spent doing exactly that. Advertising is largely concerned with establishing brand recognition and keeping your brand top of mind for consumers.

Advertising, particularly TV advertising, is largely a visual medium. Companies regularly employ celebrity spokespeople precisely because people recognize them. Others use well-established cartoon characters or develop characters of their own to build recognition.

Animals are popular as well. MetLife has adopted Snoopy and even given him his own blimp. One of the more endearing examples is the Travelers Insurance dog, Chopper. It’s said that Chopper was rescued from an animal shelter by an employee of the advertising company that produces the TV ads.

Take advantage of this association. By putting your company logo or iconic advertising image on your mail piece, you gain instant recognition. In the case of direct-mail pieces, put it on the envelope. Prominently displaying your logo on your communications is better than any introductory paragraph you could write.

How to use customized images in your communications with data driven marketing

One commonly referenced hurdle that marketers need to address is convenience. You need to make it easy for the customer to do business with you. Many marketing communications reference some variation of visit a store near you. In the case of direct-marketing communications, you can do better than that.

If you’re trying to drive customer traffic to “a store near them,” show them where it is. If you’re mailing a postcard or letter, you know where they live. And you know where your stores are. So give them a map.

Including a link to a mapping website is standard operating procedure with e-mails. But in the case of a direct mail piece, it’s still possible to print a map that will get them where they need to go.

Being relevant to the customer is another key marketing challenge. You can use images in this regard as well. Including images that reflect their past purchases is a good way to be relevant. It shows that you understand and value your relationship. This idea is best illustrated with a couple of examples.

Every once in a while postcards or letters are mailed regarding your cars. The messages vary. Sometimes they want to buy them back or take one on trade for a new car. Others are service reminders.

The communications that really impress are the ones that actually show a picture of the car you have. One company in particular actually gets the color right. They also reference the make and model and even the year in the text of the solicitation — but the image really drives home the point that they’re paying attention to who they’re talking to.

Another example that might impress you relates to a recent cruise that you took. A few months after you booked you got a notification that it was time to book your shore excursions. The e-mail contained a list of the available excursions on that particular cruise.

But the e-mail also contained images that portrayed those particular excursions. In this case, the images actually sold you. The majestic landscapes that were portrayed got you thinking, “I’ve gotta see that!”

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