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Postcard Marketing Model #18: Increase Web Site Traffic

In the early years of the World Wide Web, simply announcing a new web site earned attention. Postcards bearing a snapshot of the home page sent to a company's list of customers or to targeted strangers therefore got results.

Today you need a more imaginative approach to use postcards as a means of driving traffic to a web site. With inventiveness that's keyed to keen interests and urgent needs of your market, postcards still perform with panache. Here's why.

First, postcards enable you to contact people who fit highly specific criteria. If you sell to consumers, you can mail cards exclusively to individuals in precise locations, within a range of household income, within a certain age range, who have children or not, and so on. If you sell to businesses, you can send cards only to those that have been in business a given number of years or more, to brand-new businesses, to those with a number of employees or a range of annual revenue, etc. It's next to impossible to narrow in on your target market this way via email.

Second, postcards provide a cost-effective alternative or additional way to catch the attention of customers who may not respond to email alone or who dislike email marketing. Most people scan through their mail at a time of their own choosing, when they're in a receptive frame of mind. And because fewer promoters are now using postal mail for customer outreach, the pieces of mail that do arrive have less competition at that moment. Due to their unique format, postcards always get looked at, at least for a few seconds.

But how best to take advantage of that fleeting opportunity in the mail stack so as to convince the recipient to visit your web site? Several tactics work:

· A special limited-time offer, with details on a specific page of your site. This might be a discount, a free preview, a free review or assessment or an appealing bonus if the respondent takes action by a certain date.

· A new product that matches the needs of your market, with details on the site. The postcard should emphasize the benefits and uniqueness of the item and how it outperforms other ways to get those benefits.

· Announce a free report, video, software tool or audio file available on your site. Require an opt-in to receive the freebie, and if its perceived value is high enough, recipients of your postcard register and put themselves in the position to receive a series of related follow-up emails.

· Make a startling or provocative claim, with further details at the site. My favorite postcard marketing technique, this works spectacularly when the surprising statement challenges a commonly accepted belief. Many readers can't resist wanting to find out how and why someone would disagree with what they assume to be true.

The ingredients of postcard marketing success go far deeper than the wording and design of the postcard itself. When the message uses the psychology of curiosity as well as a fine-tuned understanding of the target market, postcards inexpensively and effectively get people to your web site.


Veteran postcard marketer, consultant and author Marcia Yudkin is the creator of The Mighty Postcard Marketing Course, which teaches the strategic, logistical, design and copywriting secrets of successful postcard marketing (www.yudkin.com/postcardcourse.htm ).

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