Depending on the product or service you want to offer, it’s very important to consider the timing of your campaigns. You’ve heard the old saying: Timing is everything. In direct marketing, this is very true.
You need to think from the customer’s point of view.
For instance, if your offer is related to an event like: Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day or some occasion like that, you need to get your message to your target market early enough so they have time to consider your offer and respond to it so you can deliver in time for that event.
Who wants to give their mother a Mother’s Day present a week late?
Two key questions you should ask yourself about timing your campaigns are:
What about different holiday times of the year; will they affect response rates and sales?
I don’t usually send direct mail offers to consumers or engage in much telemarketing activity between mid December and mid January. I’ll always try to have a direct mail offer in their letter box no later than December 10th and not earlier than January 15th. The reason for this is that it’s usually too competitive – there are so many offers cluttering letter boxes during this time of year already.
Not to mention that most people are so busy at that time of year getting ready for the holiday season, they don’t have a lot of time to consider your offer, much less respond to it. Considering the costs involved in getting offers to customers at any time of the year, and how small our universe may be, it’s much better to hold off contacting them until they’re not so busy or bombarded with too many competing offers.
What about different days of the week, or time of day – how do these affect response?
Timing your offers for the right time of week and/or time of day to reach your consumer can be a significant element in your response rates. You may find that some days are better than others for response for an email deployment or direct mail letter. Depending on the type of consumers you’re trying to reach with telemarketing – do you have better contact rates during the day or in the early evening? You need to test different times of the week and times of day to maximise your response to squeeze the most response out of your campaigns to reduce your overall Cost of Sale.
Timing is everything, so make sure you’re not rushing to launch a campaign just because you feel pressure to get something out! When developing your plan, be sure to factor in the different times of the year, week and day for engaging with your target market.