Are You Timing Your Marketing Campaigns Properly?
If you want your next marketing campaign to be successful, there is a lot to consider. You have to put in the time and effort to create amazing marketing materials that are informative and visually appealing. Paired with that, you need a great offer and calls-to-action that entice the recipient of your materials to do what you want them to do.
Unfortunately, all of that doesn’t guarantee that your next campaign is going to run as smoothly as it should. You also have to make sure you time things right.
Timing Considerations to Make
In terms of campaign “timing,” there are multiple things that need to be considered if you want your campaign to run smoothly.
Your Different Strategies
When looking at timing your individual campaign pieces, keep the following in mind for each of the strategies that your campaign utilizes:
It’s a bit difficult to plan out your direct mail pieces that precisely. It typically takes a few business days for them to arrive, and the time it takes will vary between recipient. You also cannot control the time during the day the person receives them; that will depend on when the mail carrier arrives at their location.
Keep in mind that the worst time of year to send campaign pieces through the mail is around any major holiday because your pieces will get lumped into the holiday “junk mail” pile. They may also take longer to get to your recipient.
Most people check their work email first thing when they get into the office. Sending an email before 8AM will get you in front of those people. Another decent time is between 3PM and 7PM when people aren’t as distracted by their regular daily activities.
The timing of your social media posts varies between platforms. According to research:
- Facebook posts posted Thursday-Sunday between 1-4PM get the most clicks.
- Twitter posts receive the most click-through rates on Wednesday around noon, or around 6PM.
- LinkedIn posts perform best between Tuesday-Thursday, either between 7-8AM, around noon, or between 5-6PM.
- Instagram posts that perform best are the ones posted on Monday or Thursday between 8-9AM or around 5PM.
Some of your campaigns, especially the somewhat larger ones in which you are targeting prospects, are going to involve a cold call. Research has found that the best time to call is between 4-5PM, the second best time is between 8-10AM, and the worst times are 11AM and 2PM.
You might find that for you, these times aren’t actually the best. For example, your target audience might respond better to emails in the middle of the day if they’re checking their emails before or after lunch.
That’s why it’s important to monitor the results of your campaigns, and tweak things during your next run to try and improve your results the second time around.
Order of Materials
When determining the timing of your campaign materials, you should also consider the order that you send them out.
Unfortunately, since the campaign materials that you send out vary so much between different campaigns, there’s not really a “best” order for things to go out. However, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Educate, then Sell: Organize your campaign materials in a way so that pieces more focused on education are sent first. They might not necessarily be soft-sell touches, but they shouldn’t be as hard sell as your later materials. This progression corresponds with the logical thought process your target audience will go through during your campaign, and will make your campaign more effective.
- Sense of Urgency: In your messaging, you can gradually increase your sense of urgency in any time-sensitive campaign that you run so that the pieces toward the end of your campaign evoke a Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) response.
- Intermix Your Touches: For most of your campaigns, we recommend intermixing your direct mail and digital marketing touches. If an individual you are marketing to is only seeing your digital touches or only seeing your direct mail touches, this helps ensure that they don’t feel bombarded by your campaign materials.
- Save the Best for (Almost) Last: If your campaign is going to include a cold calling aspect, that call should be last or toward the end of your campaign. When they are, you can use the previous campaign touches as an excuse to reach out, which allows you to better get your foot in the door.
Time Between Materials
If you push out your campaign materials all at once, back to back, the recipients of them will feel bombarded. At the other end of the spectrum, if you space them out too much, then the message of your campaign won’t have the compounding strength that marketing campaigns aim to create.
What is ideal?
Again, because the campaigns that you may be running vary so much, it’s hard to say...but there are still a few things to keep in mind.
You may have some pieces that go out at the same time. For example, you may have a social media post going out the same day as an email. That is okay, as they are different mediums. But, you wouldn’t want direct mail pieces from the same campaign arriving on the same day, or even one day after the other.
With your campaign materials, you have to find a balance that is appropriate based on the variety and number of communication methods that you are using.
Seasonal, Situational, and Holiday Considerations
Certain campaign topics are going to perform better during certain times of the year, depending on how the tone and messaging within them is framed. For example, it wouldn’t make much sense to run a campaign promoting your backup & disaster recovery services using natural disaster-related messaging when the weather is not going to be like that for months!
Going along with this example, if you live in an area that has hurricanes, you can run a campaign shortly before or during the start of hurricane season promoting these services. Similarly, if you live in an area that deals with flooding, do the same around the time when the flooding is the worst - whatever makes sense based on your local area, and what peoples’ concerns are going to be during certain times of the year.
You can also take advantage of current events that are in relation to your service offerings. For example, you may already know that Windows Server 2008 will be reaching its end of life on January 14th, 2020. You can use this to push local businesses to migrate away from this with your help before the official support for it ends. There may be other unexpected opportunities that come up too, such as a well-known network breach by a larger company located in your state. Just make sure that you spin up your campaign quickly so that the event is still relevant when your campaign materials go out.
Framing your entire campaign around a holiday can be effective as well. Whether it’s a commonly celebrated holiday or a tech-related holiday, framing your campaign using a holiday can give you an ‘excuse’ to reach out to your audience.
Run Your Next Marketing Campaign the Right Way
If you’re worried that your campaign isn’t as optimally timed as it should be, let us run your next one for you! We have experience running multiple types of campaigns and can make sure that your campaign runs smoothly.
Reach out to us to learn about your options.