To answer the burning question of marketers across brands, yes, direct mail is still a “thing.” In fact, it’s a resurging thing, according to Bruce McMeekin writing in Forbes.
“Integrated with new media, savvy marketers are discovering that direct mail is more powerful and return on investment-positive than ever, especially for microtargeting new customers and deepening relationships with existing ones,” McMeekin writes. “While communications channel options evolve at a rapid pace, the premise of putting the right offer in front of the right person at the right time never changes.”
It’s essentially Marketing 101, and it works – really well – in an age where we are inundated with digital distractions. Some of these digital marketing techniques work, to be sure, but direct mail gets its value from its staying power.
“In addition to its pinpoint targeting advantage, direct mail is tangible and has a longer shelf life than email, which users often forget or delete seconds after opening,” McMeekin writes. “A piece of mail with a strong offer might sit on a desk or a kitchen counter for days — even weeks — after your target first glances at it. Because it can be held and touched, it conveys emotion and inspires action in a way that screentime can’t.”
Ready to try a new direct mail campaign? McMeekin offers three tips to position your campaign to succeed.
1. Personalize the message … and the offer.
“We want to be understood and recognized,” he explains. “The more you can connect with this human truth as a marketer, the more successful you’ll be. In fact, according to recent consumer research, people are choosing brands more for their relevance to customer needs than for their loyalty and incentive programs.”
2. Target carefully and succinctly.
Keep the message simple and on point. And make sure it is sent to the people who will find it relevant. When you can reach the right person with the right message, it works. “In fact, the U.S. Postal Service found that 62% of millennials visited a store in the past month based on information they received in the mail,” McMeekin notes.
3. Fuse your marketing methods.
“One study found that people spend 25% more when direct mail is used in combination with email marketing,” McMeekin explains. “The magic happens when you fuse multiple tools together and combine old, trusty techniques with new, trendy ones.”
Magic? Maybe not, but powerfully effective marketing starts with understanding your audience, and what they want. More and more these days, they want highly personalized, relevant information in a format that doesn’t intrude. They want your direct mail.