Make it real

I highly recommend having offline communications with your clients to back up your online messaging. As an example, AFG’s quarterly Haven Newsletter can be emailed as part of their monthly SMART fee, but at the tick of a button you can opt to have it printed and mailed by paying the additional associated costs.

As a bare minimum, there should be at least one physical item delivered to your clients every year, but I’d really suggest at least a quarterly printed newsletter of several pages in size. Yes, email and e-books have the benefit of being free, but they are also much more easily ignored and deleted. They are of lower perceived value to your clients because they know it is the easy and free option for you.

Mailing or dropping something off immediately increases its value to your clients by the simple fact you have taken the time and expense to get it to them that way. The effectiveness of a physical item will always outweigh the same thing emailed. This is particularly so when it is a sizeable item or package, rather than just a standard envelope of a few pages which is more easily disregarded or discarded. Bulky or odd shaped mail is always opened, and opened first.

I have had people who have started reading the e-book version of my 7 Easy Steps to Mortgage Freedom tell me that it wasn’t until they were several pages in that they realised how substantial and how many pages it was. Their first thought when they got it that it would be quite short, like most e-books.

That tells me that all the people who got the e-book version but didn’t take the time to start reading it don’t realise how extensive it is. Of course, when I hand the real book over to people they get the immediate impact of a tangible

book comprising hundreds of pages — so even if they never even open it their perception of me improves.

With so many businesses solely using online customer contact systems, targeted, personalised physical mailings are an easy way to stand out. Most businesses are moving to have their bills and statements sent to people online now, so the letterbox is going to become more and more empty over time.