While the 21st century seems like the era of digital marketing, there are numerous old-school marketing techniques that are still in full swing. One of them is the method of direct mail.
The best way to evaluate the effectiveness of direct mail in 2021 would be to compare it to its digital counterpart – email marketing. Moreover, there are several ways in which the effectiveness of direct mail can be tracked and a couple of methods in which it can be integrated into digital marketing.
All in all, sending mail the old-fashioned way has numerous perks and should, therefore, be integrated into your overall marketing strategy. Here are six ways you can use direct mail to improve your brand’s reach and trustworthiness, as well as some additional benefits.
Opened, Read, and Responded to
Because direct mail has a more personalized approach, people are more likely to open, read, and respond to it. Even if it comes from an unknown source, you are more likely to open the mail and check it out rather than just discard it right away. In other words, even in the digital era, there’s a reason to invest in direct mail marketing.
Then, there’s also the issue of safety to consider. Even though email marketing still seems to be one of the most effective marketing methods, a lot of people are suspicious of emails. Emails from unknown sources may contain malware, and there’s always the risk of phishing. One of the reasons people are more likely to open direct mail is that it’s safer.
Helps Build Trust
Another advantage of direct mail is the fact that it’s more personal. Around 59% of people actually like receiving direct mail from brands they support. Everyone likes preferential treatment, and the idea that someone went through the effort to print and send this shows extra effort. Of course, with the help of present-day digital printing techniques and services, this process is frugal and effortless. Still, it requires more personal effort than sending an email, and that’s what counts.
Moreover, people are suspicious of just how easy it is to set up an online business and reach out to potential customers in a digital environment. Sending direct mail helps them see the analog presence of your business even before they visit your store or receive your product. There’s a certain sense of nostalgia that comes from this, and it’s something that you shouldn’t lose from sight.
Targeted and Personalized
Making an email list is not a simple task, and an organically grown email list is incredibly valuable; however, making a direct mail list is always more targeted. You still need to make profiles of recipients, define your ideal buyer persona, and get the addresses of these people. Nonetheless, using all this information (personal name and details) in direct mail simply seems to be more impactful.
Direct mail is personalized both visually and content-wise. With modern printing equipment and methods, each piece of mail can be made unique. More importantly, this impressive feat can be achieved on a budget. This shows another massive advantage of direct mail as a marketing method – it is cost-efficient.
Chance to Show Creativity
When it comes to direct mail, the majority of people immediately think of letters or brochures. While these two methods are both popular and effective, they’re just the tip of the iceberg. By using interesting materials, cutout methods, and unique printing styles, you can also appeal to the tactile sense of your readers. So, other than just a font and design, you also get a chance to apply textures (even insert 3D objects into the print).
While achieving this requires quite a bit of skill and experience in the field, the chances are that you won’t be printing this mail in-house. Outsourcing to a specialized printing agency (which is the only sensible way of handling this task) will ensure that something so complex and effective is handled rather effortlessly (on your part).
Easy to Integrate with Digital Marketing
There are multiple ways to integrate direct mail with your digital marketing campaign. For instance, you can include a scannable QR code to the mail or add a custom code. This way, you get a chance to also track the effectiveness of your direct mail. On the other hand, you can also add social media handles, URLs or just suggest that they look you up online.
As far as the content goes, printing allows you to recycle your content simply and effectively. For instance, you can use the infographic that you’ve posted a couple of weeks ago and turn it into a brochure that you will send as a direct mail to your audience. This way, you expand the reach of your content, thus giving it a significant boost. This way, direct mail can even serve an invaluable purpose in enhancing your content marketing.
The rule of seven is the marketing concept which states that people need to interact with your brand on seven different occasions before they become paying customers. This is why omnichannel experience is one of the most effective ways to facilitate the customer lifecycle. It explains why using direct mail in unison with other marketing methods (both digital and traditional) is so effective.
Combining emails with direct mail follow-up can yield a 40% higher follow rate, which is a staggering boost to your conversion rate and overall persuasiveness. The effects of this, nonetheless, are not just impressive when combined with emails. Following up on a digital display ad will give you 26% better results. This is an opportunity that is simply too lucrative to miss out on.
In other words, while it may not be as trackable and measurable as digital marketing, direct mail (and offline marketing, in general) still has its purpose. This form of marketing is more traditional, which helps turn the card of nostalgia in your favor. It also allows you to recycle your content and expand your reach, gaining access to a new audience. Since it exists in physical form, it allows you an option to appeal to a tactile sense of your audience, as well. Finally, it is easy to integrate into your digital marketing campaign.