direct mail

Beyond A House: The Biggest Purchase We Make

 

You’re considering one of the biggest purchases of your life and you get – wait for it – an email.

But it’s just like the hundreds of emails you get for everything from drug stores to dental appointment reminders.

If you’re asking someone to make the second biggest purchase of their life (behind housing), shouldn’t you at least take the time to make it personal?

 

Letters and handwritten cards have greater importance now more than ever. These days, our email boxes can feel flooded with junk mail every day, and missives from companies are sometimes automatically filtered out, if not thrown in the junk mail folder immediately. On the other hand, hard-copy letters are fewer and further between now, and each one gets a little more attention than before.

Everyone gets mail. It’s not just seniors, either, as more and more young people are opting out of the web and focusing on life away from screens, phones, and computers. Using traditional mail is still the best way to contact everyone. Forty-four percent of millennials pick up mail at least six days a week, compared to 60 percent of Gen Xers and 73 percent of Baby Boomers.

Finally, according to the USPS Office of Inspector General, the decline in mail volume may be more nuanced than some realize.

“Take the drop in First-Class Mail (FCM), for instance. FCM decline varies widely by location… For example, in Dallas, the percent of First Class Mail (FCM) volume lost was greater than in Charleston, WV – where it was close to zero. Moreover, the rate of decline is slowing or has even stopped in many of the areas that have lost the most mail volume. Declines in U.S. Postal Service mail volume vary widely across the United States.”

Mail providers and the U.S. Post Office ensure that your letter gets to the mailbox of the person written on the envelope. On the other hand, digital documents can easily bounce back for a number of reasons, from misspelled addresses to full inboxes or out-of-office situations to spam folders.

When you come right down to it, paper mail just means more. The key is feelings. Seventy-five percent of the inspector general’s survey respondents said receiving personal mail “made them feel special.”

Doesn’t it make sense that if you’re asking a person to make the first or second biggest purchase decision of their lives, you should at least take the time to put it in writing?

Direct Mail vs. Email: You Get What You Pay For

 

Direct mail vs. email? In a constantly evolving marketing environment, which one really delivers the best bang for your buck? On one hand, dealers tend to feel that “nobody reads mail… they just throw it in the trash.” On the other hand, dealers just can’t get past “how cheap email is… it’s practically free.”  The evidence suggests we need to reevaluate the way we use email. Rather than thinking of it as a cheap form of marketing, how we can utilize its strengths? If we continue to bombard customers, we may risk alienating them. Really, the questions you should be asking are, “How do my customers want to be contacted?” and “How often?”

  • Today, 70 percent of consumers reportedly feel like they receive too many emails.
  • The average lifespan of an email is now just 2 seconds and brand recall directly after seeing a digital ad is just 44 percent, compared to direct mail which has a brand recall of 75.

Credit: Pro Active Marketing

As the effectiveness of email marketing declines, the response to direct mail is on the rise, and printed media becomes a more trusted form of consumer communication.

Credit: Pro Active Marketing

You might be thinking that direct mail doesn’t work with millennials. The truth is, according to the United States Postal Service, 47 percent of millennials actually check their mailbox each day. Not only do young people read their direct mail offers, they actually respond well to direct mail offers. The Data and Marketing Association marks 18–21 years olds’ response rate as 12.4 percent.

Credit: Pro Active Marketing

How often should I mail? It depends.

In all other forms of advertising – newspaper, magazine, television, radio and online – there isn’t a second thought given to spending thousands and even millions of dollars marketing to the same subscribers, viewers, and listeners day after day, and even year after year. Yet, dealers question sending a direct mail campaign twice to the same list. Advertising is primarily about repetition, and direct mail is no exception.

We’re not saying to quit email and put all of your money into mail, but since you’re selling the second biggest ticket item most people will ever purchase, take the time to send a letter, postcard, or custom-printed piece to ask for their business. It just means more.

Why Direct Mail Still Matters in the Digital Age

Direct mail works

Why Direct Mail Still Matters in the Digital Age

Why do thousands of businesses all across the country still use direct mail marketing in the digital age? It’s simple. It still works.

The perception that direct mail is going the way of the dinosaur is contradicted by numerous studies showing that it remains a solid tool to reach prospects that delivers impressive return rates. We’re of the opinion that the internet has actually improved the effectiveness of direct mail marketing efforts for our clients.

Here’s how:

More Targeted Approach

The vast number of databases available online give direct marketers the information needed to provide targeted and, more importantly, personalized messaging to prospects. It’s no secret that personalization makes any marketing effort more effective, but when you combine personalization with a compelling offer that’s targeted to the right prospect – you get better response rates.

Scrub Those Lists So They Are Shiny & New

In the old days, scrubbing database lists was an arduous and tedious process. Now, with the new digital tools available, it’s easier, quicker, and can be done on an almost automated basis. It’s also still an essential piece of any potent direct mail campaign. After all, would you open a piece of mail that lists the wrong person, or a car that you haven’t owned in ten years?

Pinpoint Timing

With the online data mining tools available, you can determine who is currently seeking out a new vehicle, who is due for service or maintenance, or when a lease term is set to expire. This is real-time data that provides an opportunity to reach customers at the exact time when they are going to make a purchase decision.

The internet and traditional direct mail marketing aren’t mutually exclusive. When you combine the two, you’ve got an effective, low-cost marketing campaign at your disposal that generates true ROI for your business. We’re ready to help you grow your business with our direct marketing services. Just let us know how we can assist today!