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When is Direct Mail appropriate? Ask yourself these questions…

Most marketers acknowledge that, when approached correctly, Direct Mail can be a mighty and impactful marketing channel.

Last year, a study by a Canadian neuromarketing firm found that Direct Mail requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than digital media, suggesting that it is both easier to understand and more memorable.

Direct Mail has downsides versus digital channels of course – it can be expensive, a little slower to see results and some might be concerned about the environmental impact.

However when direct mail is specific, timely, personalised and considered alongside your other marketing channels, hell boy, you’ll be in for a treat!

So how do you know if DM is a suitable channel for you? Consider the following:

  1. Have you allowed creative thinking time?

“Creative still wins the day,” Sheryl Sandberg declared at DMEXCO, 2017. We agree with you, Sheryl. Research suggests that 70% of campaign success is driven by creative and 30% by media plan. Let’s make sure the creative is on point, relevant and enticing. A crucial stage before considering…

  1. Is your incentive or offer appealing to your audience(s)?

For example, 10% off a high-value product could be a great incentive. But it could also be perceived as ‘not worth the effort’ in other contexts. Thinking about the type of offer that applies to your various audience(s) will improve your response rate. In addition, a catchy promo code will make your call to action clear, and importantly, allow you to track your campaign’s success. (Note: Make sure to run a risk assessment to ensure you can fulfill your promotional promises.)

  1. Can you be clever with personalisation and segmentation?

Leverage the data you hold to maximise the relevance of your communications. The more relevant the communication, the more likely you are to build engagement. Segment customers based on recency, frequency, value for best results and then use the actual data in their customer record to add the ‘wow’ factor.

  1. Are millennials part of your target group?

Many people avoid sending Direct Mail to millennials in this digital age. However because millennials tend to receive less direct mail, they are often the highest responders. Just don’t forget points 2 and 3 and integrate this channel with others for maximum effect.

  1. To envelope or not to envelope?

Research shows that a simple plain envelope can increase the effectiveness of direct mail. You might remember the simple personalised letter sent by Theresa May to each household in the UK during this year’s election. While her campaign was arguably a bit of a shambles, this particular piece of direct mail stood out in the sea of election pamphlets flying through our doors.

  1. I’m a digital business. Should I use Direct Mail?

As an example, Google uses Direct Mail for their B2B customers to promote their AdWords service, making the most of those open rates, with a super incentive, and overcoming the bulging email inboxes. Clever!

  1. Simplicity – or the danger of trying to do too much. 

Understandably, as DM is a little more costly than other channels, it can be tempting to cram everything in. Giving a focus to your communication will improve response. We work with our clients to derive the key objective. Is it to drive more sales? Or perhaps the focus is re-engagement? Just make sure you establish the most important goal before you start.

If you’d like to consider direct mail as part of your marketing efforts, please get in touch with us. As the UK’s number 1 DM agency 4 out of the last 6 years, we’re well placed to help you elevate your marketing efforts from good to great.

Check out some of our case studies here.

Or get in touch.