Distribution Logistics

Direct mail: the forgotten marketing tool?

B2B Editor1 March 2015

Mail is tangible, reliable and versatile. Although the general thinking in many circles seems to be that direct mail is an antiquated and expensive form of marketing, there is mounting evidence of an increasing respect for the humble letter, brochure or catalogue received in the home or office letter box.

People who use email regularly have become savvy at blocking sales messages with advanced filters. In fact many reports and much anecdotal evidence suggest that consumers are now more likely to open and read marketing, advertising and other information received in the mail compared to opening and reading unsolicited emails. We have become overwhelmed by the continuous barrage of emails.

Direct mail is highly targeted and can be tailored for a specific audience, thus ensuring customers only receive offers or information that are of interest to them. By targeting as opposed to randomly pitching your product or offer you will spend less and achieve a far more effective outcome. Design, size and presentation are critical and can really make a huge impact on your audience. The world of technology has in fact increased our love of tangible things, where receiving something in the post has become somewhat of a novelty.

A variety of formats and options, from postcards and brochures to magazines and catalogues, make direct mail a suitable strategic component for almost any campaign. Contrary to popular belief, direct mail doesn’t have to be boring! Thanks to sophisticated marketing software and digital printing, savvy marketers are personalising messages and engaging prospective customers in incredible ways. Envelopes that catch the eye and engage the reader with customised teaser copy, highly customised letters that include handwritten notes and vivid brochures/inserts that showcase further details, capture and engage readers.

Building a cohesive marketing campaign, that includes both traditional approaches, like direct mail, and new technology, will ultimately increase the impact of your brand by enabling your target audience to experience a tangible and exciting range of media rather than the standard barrage of emails. When balanced with the right creative and optimal data, direct mail can deliver more than just a meaningful piece of mail, it can boomerang a powerful return on investment and bring traffic to your online efforts.

Online marketing has become the new and shiny toy, but don’t forget direct mail is still a reliable way to deliver compelling messages on an individual level. Together, direct mail and online marketing offer the perfect combination to turn prospective buyers into loyal customers.