i read up on million dollar letter, think its a great idea, but it seems best to send it out to your noncustomers, so my question is - where do i get all the adresses in my area? and after i get the list - should i just erase every adress that is already ordering from me? sounds a bit complicated. how did you go about it? (eliminating your present customer from mailing million dollar letter)
If you have a database of your current customers from your point-of-sale system, any mailing house should be able to generate a current list for your target area and remove your current customers from it. Then they give you a list of potential customers for you to address the envelopes with.
Do you have a POS system?
i just spoke to mailing house, they told me they may be could provide me with list of all adresses in desired area, but told me i’ll have hard time getting to use it, cause it comes is specific sequel format or something, like it will be listing main street adresses and than jumps to say park st. and then back to main street, so its not excel format… and weird listing, not alphabetical or any way that will make sence to me, but special carior route or postal service kind of way, and they said definetly cannot be done to exclude adreeses that i give to them with my present customers. they pointed me out towards melissadata, com to check if they could do what i want, so i ll post later my findings. i do not currently have a pos, but will have it within few weeks, but i have records of my customers just on paper, that i’ll able to put in pos as soon as i get it.
just got of the phone with melissadata customer service rep - negative, i can purchase a list of adresses in particular area, but it comes in walk sequence and can not be orginazed alphabeticly by street name, so that i could easily take my present customers adresses out.
So, i thought may be to just mail million dollar letter to entire area, but here is the question - how do you know the real response rate? - if say 7% of households are already your customers, and you response rate say turnes out to be 8% - what does it mean - your real return is 1%, because another 7% - are your existing customers who order from you anyway, but just desided to take you up on a great offer? - or i could run a new customers report and see how many new customers i got after mail out, but some of them could be new customer for other reasons. a lot of people claimed responses up to 15% - so how did you know that all those orders came from new potensial customers, and nor existing ones, if you mailed a million dollar letter to your entire zip code or courier route not excluding your regular customers? or if you did exclude them - how did you do it?
Your Melissa data should come in an excel format…Your current customers should also be able to be saved as an excel format…With both files you should be able process the data to produce a separate list of addresses that is not on both lists…So basically you are subtracting your list from their list…
As an alternative, if the list is not too large, you should be able to manually extract the existing clients…Obviously time consuming but necessary for best results…
Subtracting your in-house list from a bulk mailing list is fairly simple using Excel. You can copy all of the data into one sheet, then use the ‘remove duplicates’ (under Data) to find unique addresses. If you color-code the entries from each file first, you’ll be able to tell which came from where, and which ones are left over. I hope this helps, should be a quick fix if you are familiar with Excel. I think sending out a personalized letter (customized for your restaurant) is an outstanding way to reach new clients and start building lasting relationships.
Good luck, all the best!
thats a irregular instance…
thank you guys for your help. now tell me if this is something that can be done also - can i somehow purchase and upload say name, adress and phone number of each resident in my delivery area to my pos and than run report of people who never ordered from me and this way get the desired list? anybody done it? which pos you used?
I’m baffled as to why none of these mailing houses can give you a list of prospects in your area in a usable format.
Try going to the American Clearing House website. They have a feature that allows you to draw your area on a map and generate all kinds of materials from it like map books, wall maps and databases from it. Contact them, tell them what you are trying to do, and ask them if they can give you a list of addresses sorted in the way you want it.
If you already have a digital list, it should be easy from them to subtract your current customers from their list.