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February 10, 2022

5 Trigger-Based Direct Mail Marketing Examples

Guest Author

Using automated triggers in your marketing programs is an effective approach to maximizing conversions. Depending on the nature of events that occur during a customer’s lifecycle, you can use triggers to move quickly on unique opportunities to engage them.

Direct mail triggers hold much promise. While many triggers are initiated online, there’s no reason for the response to be limited to typical emails, chat messages or other digital communications. In fact, according to USPS Customer & Market Insights:

  • 50% of customers try something new within six months after receiving a direct mailer 
  • 81% look forward to receiving mail
  • Two-thirds of customers pick up their mail the day it’s delivered

When you attract customers at just the right time with the right offer, they may be persuaded to take action. Triggered-based direct mail is powerful whether you want to gain or retain customers. There are many ways to trigger direct mailings, so we’ve compiled a list of five trigger-based direct mail examples to inspire you.

1. New customer trigger

Customers look for connections with brands that supply what they need. When you gain a new customer, it’s the ideal time to ignite those emotions with a direct mailpiece. Some direct mailpieces you can send include a:

  • Signed thank you letter expressing appreciation
  • Postcard with a discount for a repeat purchase

You can also trigger a direct mailpiece when a customer makes an add-on purchase like Verizon does when a customer signs up for a device protection plan.

2. Website visitor trigger

Website traffic metrics can provide you many insights about a visitors intent and interests. You can set up triggers to send direct mail based on website actions taken or not taken. If they've left your site without making a purchase, try sending a postcard with a coupon code toward their first order. You can also test combining an email and a direct mail postcard for even better engagement and response.

3. Shopping cart trigger

It’s common for shoppers to add items to their online cart while browsing products. In many cases, the potential customer may have created an account that includes their delivery address. If they abandon their cart at any point, you can respond by sending:

  • “You forgot items in your cart” email offering free shipping
  • “Come back” postcard with a limited-time discount

4. Renewal trigger

As a marketer, your focus is also on customer retention. You know acquiring a new customer is more challenging and costly than keeping your current ones. If your current customers haven’t renewed their subscription, membership, or other plans, send a reminder. For example, send a:

  • Direct mailer with special members-only or VIP discount for renewing
  • “Did you forget to renew?” postcard, thanking them for their loyalty
  • A personal note from an account representative or management team member

Check out this example from BJ's

5. Life event trigger

College enrollment, marriage, birthdays, and even newly established businesses are event-based moments that you can set triggers for, as well. When one of these conditions occurs for a prospect on your mailing list, you can send a:

  • "Congratulations" greeting with a gift card
  • Personalized message offering a product or service

Birthday mailings are popular and even half-birthdays have become a common event to trigger direct mail. DSW does an excellent job with its festive mailer to celebrate the recipient's trip around the sun.

Wrap up 

It's easy to see that triggering direct mail based on a specific action, behavior or event is a valuable, yet often neglected strategy. Any of these five trigger-based examples can boost customer acquisition, retention, conversions, and revenue. When you combine your online tactics like email marketing with trigger-based direct mail you can expect to see your response rates increase exponentially. 

Lob has revolutionized the direct mail process to help you implement campaigns with greater speed, personalization, and tracking. Automated solutions take away the complexities and manual work to make your team more efficient and successful.