Mail vs. Email: Which is Better for Business?

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There’s no doubt that industries have boomed because of the internet but what are the other ways to boost your business? It might be called ‘snail mail’ but direct paper mail could be more powerful than you think. Both email and direct mail marketing can be used as effective tools to contact potential customers, promote your products or services and keep current clients engaged. But is one form more useful than the other? Here’s a quick overview of their strengths and weaknesses that could help you decide what’s best for your business.

Engagement and Results

Yes, email is interactive in the sense that it has clickable links and can include different forms of media such as sound, picture or video but with the boom in potential for email marketing, direct mail hasn’t necessarily gone down-hill. You can still include links on your paper mail with QR (quick response) codes that people can scan with their smart phone to directly access a webpage. However, tracking is optimised for online behaviour as it is easier to monitor results such as open rates, clicked links and conversion details with email campaigns.

Reaching the Right People

Targeting your market is extremely important for effective business and you can buy many mailing lists from ‘list brokers’. However, email lists are not as reliable as direct mail lists because the direct mailing industry has been around for a lot longer, and this means that there is a larger database of ethical and effective list brokers.

In this way, a lot of email marketing is simply written off as ‘spam’ and quickly ignored whereas direct mail has to be sorted through and gets the message into the consumers hands whether they agree to the product or not. Emails are read when people are busy with other things but direct mail is read when people take the time out to look at their post.

Cost of Production

One of the main advantages of email is that it is fast to create and cheap to send. But this also means that email is disposable, even more so than direct mail. Even though your initial front-end costs will be higher, with an intelligent, attractive and targeted design including the right branding, paper and quality envelopes from a supplier such as 1st class envelopes, a direct mail marketing campaign can be useful and effective in growing business with a bigger ROI.

The best strategy is to have a well thought-out email campaign combined with an invested direct mail send out that complement each other. There are pros and cons to both methods and it is best to highlight their strengths to maximise your business potential.

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