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In a world where everything has gone digital, direct mail marketing may seem outdated. In fact, many businesses today see it as an antiquated marketing method and don’t think people have the time to respond to or browse physical mail. The truth is direct mail is a valuable tool that, when included in your marketing strategy, can foster deeper connections with your target audience.

Direct mail usually involves sending catalogs, flyers, postcards, brochures, and other promotional material to your current customers or prospects through the United States Postal Service (USPS) or any other delivery service. A direct mail strategy allows you to not only connect with your audience on a personal level but also take your brand directly into their hands. 

Like everything else, marketing strategies are cyclical. Direct mail response rates have continued to grow with each passing year as marketers use print advertising alongside their digital marketing campaigns. With that in mind, here are five reasons why businesses should include direct mail in their marketing strategy.

Direct Mail Establishes Trust with Customers

The goal of any marketing campaign should be to gain the trust of prospective customers. A 2016 study by MarketingSherpa found that 76% of consumers trust ads and promotional material they receive in the mail. On the flipside, consumers are increasingly learning to distrust company emails as they often come across as phishing scams and spam. 

This is not the case with direct mail promotional pieces since consumers are less likely to see them as an unwelcome annoyance. Direct mail marketing offers a way to personalize your package, so it feels genuinely unique to your prospects and customers.  As a result, you’re able to gain their trust and keep your brand at the top of their mind. 

Direct Mail Has a High ROI

As a business, you want to invest in marketing strategies that provide you with the highest return on investment. Direct mail marketing has a median ROI of 29%. This is way higher than online display ads and paid searches which have an ROI of 16% and 23% respectively. 

Furthermore, direct mail strategy campaigns are pretty low cost. You can find everything from traditional envelopes to window envelopes in bulk at decent prices on sites like Envelope Superstore. Designing postcards and brochures is fairly easy by using a platform like Canva. 

According to the USPS, almost 60% of the mail packages American households receive are promotional and marketing mail. As a business, you don’t want to miss out on the opportunity direct mail presents. With direct mail, you can expect a response rate of 4.9% and 9% for prospect lists and house lists respectively. Digital advertising often receives a 1% return.

Direct Mail Is Engaging and Interactive

In today’s digital world, people are spending more time interacting with digital content than they do print materials. And because of this, they react differently to them. The modern consumer is currently overwhelmed with emails from different brands looking to get their attention. What this means is that you have to cut through all the noise and work incredibly hard to win a response from your customers and prospects.

In contrast, people are always looking forward to checking their physical mailbox to see if there’s something good. Direct mail has an “emotional connection” with your prospects as it triggers desirability and improves their perception of your brand. Make sure you add a personalized touch to your package to make your direct mail marketing strategy more memorable. 

Mail Offers a Personal Touch

Most people think personalization is only possible with digital marketing channels. The truth is direct mail campaigns can be targeted and customized as well. A direct mail strategy allows you to get around the email fatigue your high-intent customers and prospects are already experiencing. It places your brand right in front of them.

It can be highly effective to individually customize each piece and tailor your message to specific customers. Adding a customer’s or prospect’s name to your package has been shown to increase direct mail response rates by 135 percent. Don’t forget to include a clear and attractive CTA in your promotional material. 

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Direct Mail Boosts Other Marketing Strategies

Most businesses are focusing more on digital marketing channels because it’s easier to track progress, follow up with qualified leads, and see results with digital. It’s, therefore, easier for your brand to get noticed with direct mail as there’s not as much competition. But that doesn’t mean these two are inherently at odds.

Final Thoughts

Direct mail marketing, when used the right way, can complement your digital marketing campaigns. A good direct mail ad should invite the customer to take action, whether it’s bringing the coupon to a physical store, scanning a QR code, or visiting your online store. As prospects respond, you can track their interests, habits, and behavior, then tailor your marketing plan to suit those things. Incorporating a direct mail strategy into your digital advertising can produce 118% higher response rates and 28% higher conversion rates.

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