Berbay recently blogged about getting a refresh in marketing basics from a handyman’s advertisement. Now, I’m being reminded of marketing fundamentals in all kinds of unexpected places.
Take this direct-mail ad I received from a plumber the other day. It’s a great example of marketing basics, offering lessons for every profession.
- It’s distinctive. The ad is big; it’s basically an over-sized postcard. It’s bright—red and black text on a yellow field. And because the mailer itself is a peel-off label, it’s eye-catchingly shiny.
- It’s memorable. First, the ad takes the unusual form of a sticker. Second, it instructs the recipient to apply the sticker to their water heater so they’ll have information easily accessible in an emergency. This means every time the recipient looks at their water heater, they’ll see the ad and remember the plumber.
- It’s informative. At Berbay we have found that we receive a greater response to mailings when we send informative, rather than promotional, material—something that doesn’t just appeal to the recipient, but offers them something educational as well. This ad does just that, providing information on what to do in an emergency as well as a safety-inspection checklist. The ad also does a good job of persuading the recipient that the information is critical, noting that the info has been updated for 2012 (Translation: “If you think you already know what to do in an emergency, that might have changed”).
- It features a call to action. The ad is a reminder of why the plumber’s services are necessary by cautioning that “a trained service technician should perform all maintenance and repairs” (Translation: “Kids, don’t try this at home”). Finally, it entreats the recipient (should they need water-heater maintenance or repairs) to call one of the plumber’s telephone numbers.
Plumbers provide services based on their possession of specialized knowledge: They’re professionals, just like lawyers, accountants or engineers. Are your marketing materials as distinctive, memorable and informative as this professional’s? How could they be more effective?