Give it a Chance.

chess-1Marketing is sometimes like playing chess, not checkers. It’s a long game with the Return On Investment (ROI) cycle varying.

In our world of instant gratification and streaming the entire season of a show over one weekend (House of Cards anyone?), we need to remember that marketing results are not instant. Even in the extremely low attention span targeted social media marketing – it can takes time up to 6 months to see leads and new customers come in the door.  We must have patience for results that last and the same can be said for direct mail.
A direct mail piece may take several weeks to pull in some leads and up to a month to get that customer walking into the door. This also varies depending on your business. The smaller the purchase, the faster the cycle. Consumers will make a faster decision for that slice of pizza than for an extension on their house.  You must give it the time it needs to run it’s course.
More is better. Is one mailing enough? As with most marketing, more usually results in faster and more consistent growth. But once you get that engine running, you’ll see a steady stream of leads and new customers. You just need to give that engine time to get going.
How long should I give it? A good guide to give your marketing the best chance for success:

  • Direct Mail: 12 months – you may see results in a month but the best guide is to run a longer cycle and adjust it along the way.
  • Newspaper: the smaller the ad, the longer you need to run it to make a difference. Sometimes up to 40 weeks for a small ad.
  • Inbound Marketing (social media, blogging, emails) 6 months to build a relationship.

Be sure to track your efforts and make adjustments as you go to improve. Listen to the advice of your marketing professionals – they watch these cycles day in and day out and can give you insight on what you can expect.