A few weeks ago I sent out postcards to all of WifiPDX’s Portland WiFi hotspots. My request was simple: recipients follow a unique link to add a description of their businesses. We received a reply from about one in three shops.
With a quick internet search, I couldn’t determine the average reply rates most direct mail campaigns receive. I’m sure response varies widely, depending on how much of a commitment the item requests. My postcard made a point to say the process was quick and free.
I would have liked to have seen over 50%, but I’m pretty happy with those numbers considering that many might have seen this simply as junk mail. All in all, it was a pretty cheap (~$30) way to reach the group that I think are more important than readers in building up WifiPDX.
If the owners, managers, and employees of the coffee shops, cafes, and bars with WiFi believe we’re enhancing the community, they’ll speak positively about our publication. Otherwise, they likely won’t speak at all.
This is why I’m determined to avoid/delay hitting up the businesses themselves for sponsorship. Maintaining this trust is probably the biggest thing I can do to improve the results next time.