Direct response and branding (or imaging) are the two major types of marketing used by companies around the world today. Direct response marketing is used by many of the products that we see and hear of every day—products like the NuWave Oven and the 5-Minute Shaper—but that may not have the capital or the time to launch global branding campaigns. Larger brands—brands like Kleenex, McDonalds, Coca-Cola, and Apple—use the branding type of marketing that require larger-scale, expensive campaigns, and may have been using these campaigns for years.
Branding on a major scale is every expensive, time-consuming, and often broadcast worldwide. Direct response marketing, however, can be done at a much lower cost and on a much smaller scale. It is still a time commitment, but it is most often counted in weeks or months rather than in the years or decades that some branding campaigns can last.
Direct response marketing is most commonly in the form of infomercials, mail order forms, or distributed flyers on car windshields designed to require an instant response from customers, such as a phone call to purchase a product or a visit to a website to learn more. This type of marketing encourages the customer to act immediately while branding is meant to have the product last in a customer’s mind and be acted upon at a later date.
There are a few characteristics beyond the timeline and the scale that differentiate direct response marketing from branding. Because they operate on a much shorter timeline than branding, it is important that direct response marketing campaigns are trackable, measurable, compelling, and specific.
Direct response marketing needs to be trackable and measurable in order to quickly know if it is successful. With branding, a company might not know why a customer chose its product over the competition, but direct response marketing relies on this type of data to determine the most effective methods for advertising the product.
While all marketing needs to be compelling and captivating, direct response has an even shorter period of time than most advertisements to catch a customer’s attention. The advertisement must also go one step further to evoke an immediate response; to do this, it often uses catchy headlines and sayings, strong copywriting, and one-time-only offers.
Finally, direct response marketing is more specific than branding because it always has a precise audience in mind for each of its special offers. The goal is to get an instant response, so what better way than tailoring an advertisement to snag the attention of the niche audience for the product?
Direct response marketing can be a beneficial way for smaller companies with tighter budgets and deadlines to get word of its product out to the perfect customer. Branding takes far more time, resources, and money to advertise a product worldwide, but not all companies have access to those types of funds. Direct response advertisements generate immediate responses from customers, which translates to immediate success for both the advertising campaign and the company.
Williams Worldwide Television is a pioneer in the field of direct response industry. We market some of the most successful “As Seen on TV” consumer products. To know about the different types of direct marketing, you may also visit Ask.com.
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