Direct Mail’s Value in Marketing Strategies
Want to get new customers for your grand opening? Have something exciting, like new products and services available to announce? Want to increase the website traffic or foot traffic to your store? Are you running a promotion or a special event at your business? How can you spread the word?
Here’s a media channel that you may not have considered: direct mail. In recent years, due to the rise of digital marketing and social media, many marketers have started to question direct mail’s value in their marketing strategies.
Start with WHY
Direct mail is an old-fashioned marketing tool that has stood the test of time. As Simon Sinek, one of the top marketing consultants, advises us, start with WHY.
So why should you use direct mail in your marketing campaign? Here are a few reasons:
1. Direct email can be extremely targeted to businesses and individuals in your ideal market. It is very important to understand your target audience, making an impact with your message is easier once you can pinpoint them.
2. Direct email is more personal. 70% of Americans say that mail is more personal than an email. Direct mail takes more effort to produce than crafting emails. That’s why the message will be tailored just for the right audience.
3. Mail is a very private form of communication. In the US it’s actually a federal offense to open someone else’s mail.
4. Mail is reliable. It is always delivered summer and winter, no matter the weather. And there isn’t a spam filter on a mailbox.
5. Mail is a tangible good. Direct mail gives people something to hold in their hands, that comes in bright colors and can be touched, smelled, handled, cut and opened, and thrown out or kept. It is a user experience involving all 5 senses, an experience that only a direct mail piece or a letter can provide.
6. Direct Mail stands out from the crowd. Email accounts now consist of over 70% spam. And 78% of consumers have unsubscribed from a company’s email list because the company was sending too many emails. Digital marketing tactics have become so overcrowded that approaching other marketing techniques is crucial to stand out from your competition.
7. Direct mail has a longer shelf life. Unlike emails, mail often stays on desks long after it has been received, leaving the opportunity to be remembered and to have a lasting impression.
8. Printed materials offer the opportunity to make an emotional connection with the audience through a sensory experience. Paper-based marketing materials have been proven through MRI imaging to leave a deeper emotional impact on the receiver than the same piece in digital format. With emotional connection comes trust, an added benefit to a business-customer relationship. People tend to be more suspicious and vigilant in the online world. This makes them more likely to disregard emails due to fear of viruses or scams.
9. Mail helps to reach the mainstream, the underserved, technologically challenged, the aging segments of the population, or the younger consumers of today. If your target is in the Baby Boomer demographic, born in 1946-1960, you should be considering direct mail for your next marketing campaign.
Knowing why to use direct mail is important, but you also have to know exactly who you want to reach. Direct mail works best when you know your target audience. It can be a waste of time and effort to use direct mail instead of paid content promotion on social media if your target audience is addicted to their smartphones.
If your potential customer is old enough to own a home or apartment and check their mailboxes often, direct mail is your ideal marketing tool. It’s all about understanding your customer’s needs.