Selecting the right direct mail service can be the difference between a successful direct mail marketing program and a complete flop. In a blog entitled, “Choosing a Print Mail Dealer,” DeAnna Spencer lists four different steps you should follow before working with a fulfillment and direct mail marketing service.

The first two steps that Spencer lists involve finding a print mail dealer. Spencer says that by adding yourself to a print mail dealer’s mailing list, you can get some examples of their work before sending out any of your own. Once you’ve found a company whose mailings are up to your standards, Spencer says that the next step is to find out what companies make up the service’s mailing list. According to Spencer, “The best mailing lists in mail order are made up of people who have bought within the past 30 days. Anything over 90 days old shouldn’t be used.”

Now that you’ve selected a fulfillment and direct mail marketing program that is right for your company, you are ready to begin printing. Spencer says that when making your first order, you should request that a copy of the mailing be sent to you. This way you can see exactly what the mailing will look like. The final step Spencer suggests is to ask for a receipt for your mailings, listing the number of pieces mailed and what day they were mailed on.

Although starting a direct mail marketing program can be a little scary, these four steps can make you feel more comfortable when selecting a direct mail service to market your product or service. By knowing more about the mailings they’ve done in the past, and keeping them accountable for the mailings they will eventually do for you, you can increase the chances of having a successful direct mail marketing program.