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Webinar Recap: 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights
Direct Mail
July 28, 2023

Webinar Recap: 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights

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Stephanie Donelson

We recently held a webinar where we revealed the top takeaways from our 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights report!

The webinar was hosted by our very own Senior Director of Content at Lob, Kim Courvoisier, and she was joined by Meaghan Hinchey, Manager, Primary Research at Mintel Consulting, and our friend Paul Bobnak, Direct Mail Evangelist.

From CTAs to personalization, the 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights report can help marketers craft ROI-driving direct mail campaigns by understanding what consumers expect from this marketing channel.

Prefer to watch the recording? Find it here.

3 key takeaways from the 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights webinar

We partnered with Comperemedia to survey 2,000 US consumers aged 18+ that are nationally representative of age, gender, income, education, and region. The survey featured about 50 questions with some open-ended follow-ups. Let’s dive in and share some key highlights from the webinar on the findings in the 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights report.

Key takeaway #1: Direct mail is a crucial element in your marketing strategy to drive action

The report shows that 64% of consumers say direct mail has inspired them to take action including exploring websites and reviews or making a purchase.

Another interesting insight from the report shows that there was a 10% increase in the demographic of those aged 18-34 compared to 2022.

“My assumption is that marketers are just better at doing mail, from personalization to reach customers to making it a more phygital experience. I have noticed personally more QR codes included in my direct mail pieces and that makes it substantially easier to take initial action,” said Hinchey.

The report also shows that 65% say an offer or promotion caught their attention.

Bobnak shared his expertise on creating offers in direct mail and said, “Discount offers seem to work best, those are dollars off or a percentage off. They want to know WIIFM - What’s In It For Me? That most often means price or discounts. This is a great time to point out that you can make 2023 the year to test your offer copy. With AI tools you can test all kinds of variations of your copy and your pricing based on segments of your target audience.”

Key takeaway #2: Hey, First Name, personalization matters

The report shows that 68% of consumers are more likely to engage with a brand’s message when it’s personalized to them. And, over half (55%) of consumers expect direct mail to be personalized to them.

Bobnak said, “I love this data point. We’ve becomes so accustomed to 1:1 communication thanks to a lot of the digital marketing we get every day. It’s based on data. Which is what intelligent mail is based on: customer behavior, demographics, and other data in your CRM or CDP. With all this data centered on customer needs and wants, you can test all kinds of copy and offers to figure out what is most relevant to the customer.”

Bobnak and Courvoisier discussed using technology to dynamically insert personalized content and images into direct mail marketing campaigns to drive better results.

“There are just so many possibilities,” Bobnak noted.

Key takeaway #3: Direct mail may not go viral online, but it is shared

The report shows that 80% of consumers share direct mail with their family and friends, especially coupons and free offers. Courvoisier asked Bobnak, what can marketers do to make their direct mail shareable?

“A lot of retailers offer friends and family offers where there are coupons that are punch out or peel off cards that can be scanned in store. Or another way you can go is provide a separate response code, URL, or QR code for the family member or friend to take advantage of.”

Courvoisier was excited by that example and noted that that second option, “It becomes very measurable and trackable, which we all love.”

Q&A recap

Our attendees asked some great questions during the webinar:

Q: How can you personalize a direct mailpiece when you have a lack of or poor data?

A: Courvoisier noted that she knows data is a challenge and she herself hasn’t worked at a company that had perfect marketing data, but there are ways to work with your data (or collect it). You can append the data you do have, such as say you have email addresses but not physical addresses. You can acquire those mailing addresses through third-party list vendors. If you have mailing addresses but are worried about the quality or accuracy of those addresses, a service like Address Verification can standardize your address data and ensure it’s deliverable.

Q: If you were to run an A/B test to optimize your direct mail offer for conversion, would you test the offer copy or the mode of redemption. And why?

A: Bobnak took this question and said to test everything. Test your offer, the copy about your offer, your segmentation.

Q: What three elements or tactics can you incorporate into your direct mail campaign to make it highly relevant so that people will act on it?

A: Hinchey answered this first and said it’s about the phygital experience, like QR codes, and making it seamless. She also noted that there needs to be a smooth omnichannel experience as no consumer is just looking at one medium. Lastly, personalization isn’t optional. Everything has to be personalized.

Bobnak offered his perspective and agreed about personalization via targeting and segmentation. He added that local businesses should focus on driving traffic to a physical locatio and providing a great customer experience. Finally, test everything as you’ll get different results from different segments of your customer base.

Watch the webinar recording to uncover all six key insights, demographic-specific data, and industry-specific data, or download your copy of the report, the 2023 State of Direct Mail Consumer Insights.

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