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December 21, 2021

7 Ways to Measure the Impact of Your Direct Mail

by 
Guest Author

Digital marketing is attractive because there are so many ways you can measure campaigns. But the impact of your direct mail campaign is easy to track, too – and you can get results just as accurately.

There are multiple ways you can track the effectiveness of your direct mail campaigns. Some of the more popular methods include:

  • Trackable URLs
  • Coupon codes
  • Trackable phone numbers
  • QR codes
  • Fillable forms and reply cards
  • Social channels
  • Web traffic

Let’s take a closer look at how you can accurately measure the impact of your direct mail

1. Trackable and Personalized URLs (PURLs)

For this method, you create a landing page connected to your direct mailing. The direct mail campaign's call-to-action (CTA) leads customers to a specific page on your company’s website, making it much easier to track which customers visited specifically because of the campaign.

For instance, a software company offering a free trial could set up a landing page similar to www.oursoftwareco.com/free-trial. Analytics can tell you the number of visitors, what actions they took on-page (specifically, if they made the desired action – signing up for the free trial), or if you made a sale.

Check out this simple example from CVS:

A more detailed tracking method is using PURLs, or personalized URLs, for every individual on your list. Each of your customers would have their very own trackable landing page. For example, "Jake Jones" would be directed to www.oursoftwareco.com/jake-jones.

Adding PURLs to your direct mail campaign provides a truly personalized experience for your prospects and customers with just little extra effort on the back-end.

2. Coupon codes

Coupons and other special discounts offer consumers an incentive to take the desired action and become your customers. Using language like "For one day only" or "For a limited time" can inspire customers to take action sooner. The best coupons and codes can be used anywhere you sell:

  • In-store
  • On your website
  • Via phone

Plus, each of these methods is trackable.

3. Trackable phone numbers

Creating a unique phone number for every direct mail campaign helps measure your response rate. Some of the easiest ways to do this include:

  • A dedicated phone number (toll-free is best) that automatically forwards calls to your business phone. Call volume is trackable based on how many calls were forwarded from your dedicated line.
  • A good call-tracking software program. Plus, call-tracking software also lets you record incoming calls. This helps improve analytics but it gives insight into how your customers feel about your campaigns and how they'll likely respond to future campaigns.

4. QR codes

QR codes are machine-scannable codes made up of various blocks of black and white. These codes store URLs and other info that can be read by a smartphone camera. Using a QR code links back to the first method above, trackable URLs. Using a QR code on a direct mail piece helps send visitors to a specific landing page when scanned. Measuring the effectiveness of a QR code in your direct mail campaign is as simple as measuring the number of visitors to that specific landing page. You can also then track how many people take the requested action once on the page.

See how Victoria's Secret and REI used QR codes on their recent mailpieces:

5. Fillable forms and reply cards

Add a postage-paid reply card to your direct mail campaign. This lets your customers respond on their time and helps you easily gather customer information.

6. Social channels

Part of great marketing includes meeting your customers where they are. Providing your social media channels on every direct mail piece helps boost your follower count and gives customers another way to reach out, connect, and interact with you. For highly targeted campaigns, only add your social channel information to mailers for customers who are on social media.

AAA recently included a CTA to stay connected and included images of its relevant social media channels on a letter mailpiece to consumers:

7. Web traffic

Offering free trials, demos, or other services via your website is an efficient yet effective method for tracking how many clients take advantage of current offers.

These are seven of the best ways to measure the success of your direct mail campaigns. Each is relatively simple to implement.

But remember – tracking is just one aspect of your overall marketing endeavors. Using the data you gather from tracking and pairing it with accurate measurement techniques can help you make an impact.

Send Direct Mail with Lob

Lob helps you send automated direct mail at scale. With Lob, you can precisely measure and personalize your direct mail campaigns just like digital campaigns. Only better. Sign up for Lob today.

To learn more, get our Tactical Guide to Direct Mail Campaigns.

This blog provides general information and discussion about direct mail marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.

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