The Ins And Outs Of Direct Mail Marketing

Direct mail marketing is one of the more personable ways of trying to garner the attention of people, delivering physically to someone’s mailbox in an attempt to advertise products or services. While most people have gone the digital marketing route in today’s advanced age, direct mail services still have their purpose as they identify what you’re trying to advertise and can draw more responses compared to more computerized options. Examples of direct mail services include plastic postcard mailers, flyers and catalogs, among other means.

But how does this work? Will such a method cost you? And why go this way when so much has advanced to the point where you’d think something like this would be closer to being obsolete? This outlining of what it is and provides should answer your burning questions about this tactic.

Why It Still Works In The Technology Age?

Direct mail marketing still has its purpose and shouldn’t be outlawed because digital marketing has become such a go-to method for people looking to advertise their services or campaigns. When investigating the median return-on-investment per medium, surveys have found that physical campaigns garnered a higher ROI than paid search and online display ads. It was just one point behind social media, which is considered the second-best advertising medium in terms of ROI that exists.

Responses rates are also higher compared to email campaigns, retaining many of the interactive traits that online campaigns tend to display and continuing to garner consistent interest as a result. The physical way of doing it gets a response rate of anywhere from two to five percent while, by comparison, email campaigns get less than one percent. Not to mention that things such as flyers and laminated postcards may have stuff on them that gets shared within the household and, later, on social media if anything on it is interesting enough that may get their friends’ attention. It’s over five percent more likely to be remembered compared to more advanced methods, which proves its worthiness in an era where it should be out of place.

People Still Check Their Letterbox

The open rates for direct mail marketing are still high, with 47% of initiatives either read or scanned. This is in part due to the fact attention for the letterbox is usually low, so this will trigger high open and read rates compared to their online counterparts.

Consumers also show more trust towards physical campaigns because of their visual elements, elements that stand out more in this way compared to more computerized options. Furthermore, it has more appeal because of the personalization that’s involved. It speaks directly to those who open their letterbox. For example, laminated postcards will feature fancy lettering for your first name and other personal information embedded in the design. The aesthetics will be more colorful and are made to catch the eye at first glance.

It can also be highly targeted to existing customers; used for retargeting, loyalty-building and onboarding purposes to keep you reeled in with updates, promotions and more.

How Much Does It Cost?

Because it needs to be sent through postal agencies, direct mail services have fixed costs attached to them. You may also have to design the mailpiece (a catalog, leaflet, etc.) yourself, which comes with an additional cost. But considering the ROI that comes with using direct mail services, it may be worth exploring for you and your business.

Using outlets that don’t restrict you to a minimum order size are good places to start. Try outlets that offer built-in design templates. You can design one of your own instead or request a custom design.

What Must You Do Before Trying Out Such Campaigns?

Before engaging with direct mail services to carry out your campaigns, ensure you define your target audience first. Researching this can save you money initially and helps you find out where your ideal customers are located.

Another key thing to do is to run tests before releasing your campaign. Once you’ve established your market and determined which areas you’re gonna send these flyers, letters or other physical campaigns to, send out some test batches to determine viability. You should also use something to track customer engagement, such as a coupon code that tracks the campaign’s progress online and tells you how many customers are using it. You can attach a phone number or email address to it so you can record who is engaged and make adjustments accordingly if things aren’t working according to plan.

Other Benefits It Provides

As mentioned, direct mail marketing has an interactive feel to it as it immediately grabs the attention of prospective customers when they open their envelopes or take flyers out of the letterbox for the first time. Some campaigns will come with promotional offers as well as coupons, which usually come with promotions from restaurants and other food places. You’ll also find a call-to-action (CTA) imploring you to do something like bring that coupon to the restaurant or purchasing something at a discounted price.

These campaigns may even trigger some nostalgia considering how old-school going to your letterbox feels in today’s world, potentially evoking more emotional responses, especially with their personalized wording and touch. They can also grab those who are either barely active or not active at all on social media. It’s not safe to assume that everyone has online access or interest in using Facebook or Twitter, so this type of campaigning gains attention and retention with that section of people.

Admittedly, it’s not as environmentally-friendly an initiative as an online campaign, but it still has ample value and purpose. You can merge it with your digital marketing strategy and win customers both on the ground and on the world wide web.

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