Home > Direct Mail > Direct Mail Has Risen from the Dead – By Suzanne Stock of Marketscan Ltd

Direct Mail Has Risen from the Dead – By Suzanne Stock of Marketscan Ltd

My digital marketing team have been pestering me for blog content for a week now (ok, it’s nearly 2 weeks). Usually I’m prolific with the old verbiage but have obviously suffered from blogger’s block of lately. I am therefore hugely indebted to Suzanne Stock of Marketscan for the post on the subject of Direct Mail. Couldn’t have put it better myself (and didn’t in fact, I cribbed off Suzanne)!


Just because we have TV doesn’t mean we don’t have books, and just because we have email marketing doesn’t mean we don’t have direct mail.

In a world of technological progress and a wealth of online marketing tools, it’s all too easy to assume that direct mail is a lost cause – but that’s not true at all. In fact, the ROI of Direct Mail has increased year-on-year for the last decade. And here’s how:


Everyone likes getting post

Business professionals suffer from inbox overload – and with just under 300 billion messages sent each day it’s hardly surprising.Perhaps in reaction to the plethora of emails arriving every day, a study conducted by the The Direct Marketing Association DMA) in April 2012 found that the response rate for direct mail to an existing customer averages 3.4%, compared to 0.12% for email.

Add to this the fact that receiving something interesting (note: you have to make it interesting) in the post is a bit of a novelty nowadays, and that the cost of printing smaller quantities of personalised mailers has fallen dramatically, and it seems like DM should definitely be back in contention for a slice of your marketing budget.

DM + online interaction = true love

The DMA also says that print DM is a good way to drive digital interaction and that the move to digital marketing has actually driven more innovation in print DM, rather than killing it off. Being creative in your DM design helps to drive better results too and using ‘dimensional mail’ rather than traditional flat paper in envelopes has been shown to get significantly higher response rates in the B2B world.

Research has shown that dimensional mail:

  • has 20 times the penetrating power of flat direct mail
  • boosts response rates by as much as 75%
  • scores 80% or better in generating positive opinions among recipients

Making the most of DM

So now that print DM is officially back on trend, how can you create mailers that will get the response you want? This article from B2B Marketing has lots of great tips, including:

  • Focused targeting – don’t mass send to everyone in your database. Be selective, develop the right messages and send only to the right people. Remember – this will only be successful if you’ve got good, up-to-date data lists.
  • Get really personal – use of first name just doesn’t cut it anymore. You have to speak to the business pain your prospects are feeling or your mailer just won’t resonate, no matter how pretty it is.
  • Don’t go it alone – like all marketing channels, integration is the key and your amazing DM campaign needs to be surrounded by other marketing activities for maximum impact.

To-do list: how to do DM right`

  • Make an integrated plan that surrounds your DM with digital activities, so the mailer also creates a buzz online
  • Go for small, targeted groups rather than blanket mails for better results
  • Remember that, although the costs of a DM campaign may seem high compared to digital, if you get it right the potential ROI is a lot higher too.
  • Create a dimensional DM that has impact

Author: Suzanne Stock Marketscan Ltd

Categories: Direct Mail
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