Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Direct Mail: the Facts

It's 2008: time to shake up your business, guide new customers to your services, and affirm your relationship with your existing client base. Is Direct Mail Marketing the right tool to grow your business? Consider this thumbnail primer on Direct Mail:

Old fashioned, or Timeless?

In the digital age, mailings may seem clunky, old-fashioned, and expensive. Despite this perception, investment in Direct Mail is growing -- sales resulting from mailings hit $421.3 billion in past years, and are projected to increase by $8.3 billion. There's a reason why you receive so much direct mail-- advertising by mail can work with rare effectiveness and distinct benefits.


With direct mail, an advertiser can target potential customers down to the finest detail-- based on income, interests, household type, education, and lots more. Nearly every household and business on the market is within reach, giving you an audience with your ideal market.

Maintenance & Tracking

Direct Mail builds and reinforces existing consumer relationships through personalized mailings. Response rate is easily tracked through coupon redemption, return-card/call-back options, or other call-to-action fulfillment. You can gauge the effectiveness of your campaign and adjust it in a way that print advertising, for example, makes difficult.

High Impact, High Response

Because your message reaches prospects interested in your services, and because your advertising
is tangible and engaging, the response rates for Direct Mail are exceptionally high. 50% of Direct Mail recipients read it immediately, and of those, over 40% find the information they received useful; consumers spend on average 10 minutes reading direct mail. Such rates are unthinkable in email marketing!

Costly, but Cost Effective

Ahh, but email marketing is much cheaper. This is true: with mailing list, printing, and postage, Direct Mail has a higher cost-per-thousand than many promotional methods. Because you're reaching the right audience with detailed information targeted to them, however, and because your mailing encourages customer interaction, wastage rates are very low. And Direct Mail is not prohibitively expensive: at, our direct mail postcards site, we can print, address (to a fresh, targeted mailing list), and mail full color postcards for $.28/piece, or even less! This is considerably less than even search engine marketing to give you face time with your best sales prospects.

Direct Mail is not for every marketing need, and works best coupled with sharp copy, and the right call to action. For speaking to your ideal marketing audience, promoting your brand, and filling the parking lot, good old Direct Mail has a lot of life left!


Peter "the Printer" Lineal