To version, or not to version, that is the question?

by Graham Dodd on 05/07/2018

I recently came across a promotional piece from one of our competitors, which featured their ability to handle door drops executed with multiple versions.

It rather gave the impression that a special skill set was required, when in all honesty, it’s a pretty straightforward process.

The vast majority of door drop planning is completed at postal sector level, which generates a direct correlation to how versions could be allocated.

Postcode districts EN1 to EN4 receive version 1 and EN6 to EN11 receive version 2, multiplied across the UK dependent upon how many versions you need.

We have a client who regularly conducts split copy tests within the main version breakdown, so as an example, in the 16 postal sectors across EN1, EN2, EN3 and EN4, 8 receive copy A and 8 receive copy B.

When testing copy, another (possibly even simpler) option, is to use a printer who can mix versions at print source.

Distribution is then truly random across each and every postal sector in the schedule.

But do clients make the most of this opportunity?

Not always.

Last year we blogged on the British Gas puffin door drop leaflet, which we still regard as one of the most creative pieces we have seen in recent years.

But, for some reason, versioning never passed postcode area level – EN.

And the salutation suggested that because I live in Enfield, I was eligible for something special.

But I don’t live in Enfield, I live in Cheshunt.

Call me sad, but suggesting my eligibility is based upon living in Enfield when I don’t, immediately personally puts me off and possibly may make others think they are not eligible?

Print processes have developed massively over the years and its really not that difficult to personalise down to postal sector level (EN8 9 – 3,229 households), or even postcode district level (EN8 – 15,982 households), which both have to be better than EN (145,877 households!)?

Many retailers appear to have abandoned store personalisation and direct consumers to an opportunity to use a store finder on their website to find their nearest store?

Other retailers (bravely) don’t personalise or promote a store finder, presumably assuming consumers know where there nearest stores are?

I’d be interested to hear back from my network.

Take your marketing hat off and as a consumer, do you have a preference; individual store personalisation, store grouping personalisation, or being referred to a website to search?

And does your preference vary based upon anything in particular like spend or convenience?

This article was written by...

– who has written 52 posts on Letterbox Consultancy for Door Drop Marketing.

Graham Dodd is the founder of The Letterbox Consultancy - he has over 40 years of experience in the door drop industry and remains at the forefront of innovation in the business.

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