Have you ever received a letter in the mail urging you to visit a webpage that has your name in the URL?  For example, I’ve seen postcards and letters that say, “Go to PhilFrost.domain.com” or “Get it now at Domain.com/PhilFrost.”

It’s hard to resist checking out a website with your name in it.

And that’s why PURLs, or personalized URLs, are so effective at boosting response.  The fact is, most people love their own name and it’s only natural to want to visit a website that appears to be built just for ME!


Why PURLs Boost Response

As I already mentioned PURLs will boost your response in direct mail and email.  The reasons are fairly obvious:

  1. Using your prospect’s name makes the URL stand out from the page because everyone quickly recognizes their own name.
  2. URLs are usually not pretty and in most cases are not easy to remember.  A PURL overcomes this hurdle by making the URL almost as easy as remembering your own name.


How PURLs Precisely Track Response

A unique PURL for every prospect allows you to precisely track your response rate.  For example, you’ll know exactly who visited your URL and who did not so you can follow up with an appropriate message to move your prospect closer to a sale.

This can have a dramatic impact on your marketing.  For example, without PURLs there’s no way to determine who already responded to your message, but didn’t yet take your desired action (i.e. completed an online form or called).

But with PURLs you’ll have this data because you’re tracking each unique URL and you can match that to your prospect list.  Therefore, you can follow up with different messages based on whether or not your prospect already visiting your website.


Remarketing With PURLs

If you’re familiar with remarketing, or retargeting, then you already know how to bring prospects back to your website after they visit.

But with the use of PURLs you can take this one step further and customize your remarketing campaigns.

If your PURL includes the name of your prospect then you can welcome your prospect back to your website by addressing her by her name!  This requires a little knowledge of how cookies work, but any credible webmaster can set this up very quickly.

Now when your prospects click on your remarketing ads to visit your website they’ll see a page customized with their name and any other information you want to include in the PURL.

I hope that sparks some ideas for how you can improve your direct mail, email, and remarketing campaigns.  Please share in the comments below.