Peer review has always been one of the most effective approaches to evaluation. Have you done that in school? If yes, then you know perfectly well that different people are likely to use different approaches to the same task. The analysis of their solutions allows detecting the most common problems your colleagues face & to learn from their experiences. This is also true when it comes to a direct mail marketing campaign. A detached view is a useful resource to avoid common challenges & achieve positive results from the very beginning.
Therefore, Inkit has interviewed representatives of various business fields & asked them a couple of questions to find out:
- Direct mail pros & cons
- What worked really well for their direct mail marketing campaigns this year & should be replicated
- What issues they ran into & how these could be avoided in the future.
In this selection, marketing professionals share their opinion to guide those who are about to start a direct mail marketing campaign. We also had Inkit’s direct mail experts add their expert comments & explain how direct mail automation can mitigate the most common direct mail problems.
Question: Why Did You Choose to Run a Direct Mail Marketing Campaign for Your Business? Pros & Cons of Direct Mail Marketing.
The majority of our respondents have admitted that snail mail is a great way to distinguish yourself from competitors. If properly done, a direct mail marketing campaign can help you build a strong connection with your target audience.
“One of the pros of a direct mail campaign is being able to reach a target audience. With direct mail marketing, you can send information to a specific group that is interested in your product or service & increase your chances of closing a deal (Jake Hay, PopShorts).”
“As the world is becoming more digital, many might think that direct mail is on the way out. However, from my experience, it’s not, & I’ve found that open rates from a direct mail campaign are significantly higher than that of an email campaign. This I believe correlates with the fact that not many letters are sent now in comparison to a few years ago & now receiving a letter through your mailbox is seen as something a little special. However, it is important not to just send out any old letter, targeting your marketing remains crucial even in your offline campaigns so make sure the messaging & design is tailored to each audience (Dan Madden, citrusHR).”
“There are a lot of benefits to direct mail. Done right it can build a bond and establish credibility with a prospect. It’s sticky, meaning I find that my prospects keep my initial mailing piece & the subsequent follow up pieces in a file until they’re ready to make a decision. The stickiness also lets you tell the prospect your story over in my case several months (Dennis Fassett, MetroDetroitHomebuyer.co).”
A direct mail marketing campaign is also an effective way to provide more information about your company. Compared to emails or digital ads, mail pieces have more space for text, images, & creativity.
“Direct mail allows you to provide customers with a piece of detailed information. A detailed letter, event invites, coupons, etc. helps to give a better deal for new customers. Also, companies can provide a picture & detailed information about the product or service in the brochure (Boni Satani, Zestard Technologies).”
“Highly targeted & so more detailed information about your product/ offer can be delivered directly to your audience (Lewis Peters, Online Rock Salt).”
In this case, the views of respondents have divided. Some of them believe that a direct mail campaign is an effective but costly affair. There are also those who consider mailing a great option to cut marketing expenditures & achieve an optimum price-quality ratio.
“Direct mail is really inexpensive compared with other lead generation techniques. I can send a letter for under a dollar, while my colleagues are using google & other online ads and paying 20+ times my cost for each click that they get (Dennis Fassett, MetroDetroitHomebuyer.co).”
“Time & money are two of the most valuable resources & direct mail doesn’t require much of either.
You probably have to buy or rent a list of prospective targets. Direct mail isn’t expensive but this adds to the cost. There’s no guarantee you’ll recoup it as direct mail marketing rarely lands the biggest clients (Morgan Taylor, Let Me Bank).”
“The cons of direct mail campaigns are of course the significantly higher costs of this over online methods, which makes achieving results very highly loaded. There is also the inherent risk involved in ensuring that the company that you entrust with the processing & distribution of your campaign do so properly, and don’t take shortcuts or fail to deliver on time (Mark, English Blinds).”
“The only disadvantage of direct mail is cost. It costs a lot of money to send direct mail in volume. Numerous little organisations spend countless money a month. Postage & printing can be incredibly costly to acquire clients (Boni Satani, Zestard Technologies).”
Expert Opinion: How Direct Mail Automation Can Cut Expenditures
Most people who complain about the cost of their direct mail campaign should consider automation. The likely reason is that they waste extra time & money on printing & mailing chores. Luckily, there are numerous tools that minimise the human role in mail delivery & optimise the process. Third-party providers know how to print and mail with maximum efficiency. In particular, Inkit provides a custom postcard builder with ready-made templates that can allow you to save on professional design. Besides, thanks to automated printing and delivery, you won’t need to look for a printing house or go to the post office. Therefore, automation is the key to getting the most out of your direct mail campaign.
Similarly to the cost, there are different opinions on direct mail campaign effectiveness. Although all respondents have stated that mail marketing generates positive results, their estimations of response rates & ROI differ. Let’s see what they think:
“The cons of direct mail campaigns is that the response rates are fairly low. Some recipients lump direct mail with junk mail, & if they don’t recognise the return address, your email could get lost (Jake Hay, PopShorts).”
“True, it is more expensive than simple Email Marketing, however, the benefits greatly outweigh any cost. Firstly, individuals are much more likely to open a personalised piece of direct mailing compared to a, in some cases, spammy looking email. As a result of this, there is an increase in return on investment, as the direct mailing is more likely to get a response from the customer (Katherine Rowland, YourParkingSpace.co.uk).”
“The main issue with this is that it’s a lot more effort than typing since you have to make sure you’re writing neatly, with the same low response rate as an email marketing outreach. Writing a letter takes more effort, but it can lead to better responses overall (Max Falb, Fueled).”
Expert Opinion: How Direct Mail Automation Can Improve Mail Effectiveness
Remember that any statistic is an average rage based on multiple direct mail campaigns. If you design a mail piece tailored to your target audience & identify the right volume & timing, you can achieve a significantly higher ROI than other.
Authors: Nathan Thompson
Outlet: Inkit, October 2019