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Direct Mail
January 23, 2024

Direct Mail: Timeless and Trusted

by 
Guest Author

Despite the dominance of digital media, direct mail remains a vital, trusted channel for brand communication.

The 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights report highlights this relevance. 48% of consumers view direct mail as crucial in fostering brand relationships. Another 47% perceive direct mail as more significant than email.

These statistics reveal that direct mail, with its unique personal appeal, occupies an important spot in consumer preferences.

The benefits of direct mail

Here's what's unique about direct mail:

The landscape is less saturated

Every corner of the digital landscape is filled with ads vying for consumers' attention. However, direct mail is much less saturated. Your physical mailbox might contain a couple of pieces of direct mail.

This quiet, uncluttered environment means that each piece of mail has a better chance of grabbing your attention and holding it longer.

To capitalize on this attention, explore creative direct mail initiatives, like Nike's stadium in a box. This campaign was designed to encourage more kids to become professional athletes. It consisted of a shoebox fitted out to look like a stadium. The "stadium" also included an integrated speaker, which played the sound of a roaring crowd.

Direct mail doesn't intrude

Direct mail doesn't interrupt consumers when they're scrolling social media or watching an online video. Instead, it waits its turn, allowing consumers to choose the right moment to give it their attention. It's there for consumers whenever they're ready, whether after a busy day or with their morning coffee.

Offering choice shows respect for the consumers' personal space and daily rhythm. A gentle approach makes the whole experience of engaging with direct mail more pleasant and pressure-free.

It fits the consumer's timeframe

Digital ads are convenient, but they don't have a lasting impact. They're consumed quickly in the hustle of daily life and promptly forgotten. Direct mail, however, presents a different scenario.

Consumers can take their time, enjoying the experience at a pace that suits them. This lets consumers absorb the message when they're most relaxed and receptive, whether during a quiet evening or as part of their weekend routine.

It's not about a quick glance but about taking the moment to engage fully. This personal, undisturbed time with direct mail turns it into a more significant, intimate part of the consumer's day, making the message resonate deeper and last longer in their minds.

Direct mail doesn't eavesdrop

Devices such as Siri or Alexa might overhear a personal conversation, and suddenly, you see ads about what you just talked about. Direct mail chooses a more respectful, less "creepy" path.

Direct mail marketing uses information about you, such as data from your shopping habits, which can trigger the timing and type of direct mail you receive. But it doesn't rely on overhearing your private talks.

Knowing private chats aren't turned into marketing data gives consumers peace of mind. It also helps build a strong, trusting bond between consumers and companies.

A postcard is more memorable than a blinking online ad

Print advertising has a 70% higher recall rate than online ads.

That's because direct mail is a tangible item you can touch, examine, and sometimes even smell. It can be colorful and have attractive designs or a unique feel. The "feel" is quite different from digital ads.

While an online image may be pleasant, you can't hold it or stick it on your fridge or memo board.

To develop a truly memorable direct mail campaign, take a look at what Jeep did to promote a new product. They created a "DNA kit" featuring elements that Jeep is known for, such as freedom and adventure, and mailed it to previous customers.

This campaign resulted in 76% of recipients attending a dealership to test-drive the new Jeep Cherokee.

Direct mail is genuine and trustworthy

Opting for direct mail marketing shows consumers that a business is willing to invest resources and attention in communicating with its customers.

This approach fosters trust, showing customers they value a sincere and lasting relationship over a quick transaction.

In December 2023, Sky Creative won a Data & Marketing Association award for their campaign, which coincided with the King Charles coronation weekend. The campaign featured a personally addressed gold envelope addressed to previous Sky TV subscribers.

Inside was an invitation designed to look like an invitation to the coronation. However, the invitation was for consumers to re-subscribe to Sky and watch TV from the comfort of their living room. It featured a phone number to "RSVP," a dress code (wear what you want), and the consumer's address.

The campaign was highly successful, garnering 7% more re-subscribers than the initial target. This proves that a company's willingness to invest time, money, and creativity into direct mail can produce a significant ROI.

Direct mail marketing by the numbers

Want new insights into the world of direct mail? The 2024 State of Direct Mail report highlights how direct mail remains a key player, even in a world dominated by digital media.

Get your copy to learn how automation and personalization are creating new opportunities for direct mail marketing.

2024 State of Direct Mail Marketing report