Does Direct Mail Work?

February 2021

What is Direct Mail?

Direct Mail is a physical way of advertising or promoting your brand, with a printed message that is delivered in the post. Advertising mail can be:

  • Addressed to the recipient a direct mail item
  • To ‘The Occupier’ or use a marketing headline message instead of the recipient’s name as a partially addressed mail item
  • Unaddressed, door drop media item such as a leaflet, flyer, postcard, or letter which does not use any details of the recipient’s name or address.

Direct Mail is engaging

In 2020 JICMAIL reported that the majority of advertising mail was very engaging

  • 94% of advertising mail is engaged with
  • 70% say mail makes them feel more valued.
  • 87% of people consider mail to be credible

And mail has a strong lifespan, with direct mail items staying in the house for an average of 8.4 days.

How Advertising Mail performed between 2019 – 2020 (JICMAIL)

Visited the sender's website Went online for more information Used a smartphone or tablet
2020 8.7% 5.8% 3.1%
2019 6.5% 4.1% 2.5%
Year on Year increase +33% +41% +25%

Even throughout the pandemic and the number of lockdowns in 2020, there had been a strong increase in interaction rates through Direct Mail.

Why do companies use Direct Mail?

Direct Mail can be a very effective way of communicating with your customers or target audience. With items delivered directly into the home, the promotional piece must be interacted with, giving your message a chance to connect with your targeted homes and stand out in what can be a very busy advertising environment.

Advertising messages via direct mail is a traditional form of promotion, outdating digital opportunities such as email, online, and social media campaigns. Though it has been around for a long time, there is a good reason why it has lasted so long, and not been excluded from marketing plans. Used properly, advertising mail is an effective way to keep your business’s brand and name at the forefront of your audience's mind.

Mail interaction rates have remained impressively high. The average piece of direct mail is interacted with 4.43 times a month on average

The fundamental elements of creating strong Direct Mail campaigns

When planned correctly, direct mail can create strong returns for businesses.  

Targeted: Advertising mail can be highly targeted by demographic and geographic audiences. Specific individuals, audience segments, life stages, or just location-based targeting can be used. 

Integration of Media: With direct mail, you can easily integrate other marketing channels including outdoor, social media, your TV and radio schedules dependent on your media budget, integrated campaigns allow amplified messages and a halo effect to your brands. By using a combined media plan, you can feel much more confident that you will be reaching your most interested. Audiences.

Tangible: A key benefit is the channel's physicality, advertising mail gives your message more space to communicate detail and signpost key information for action to be taken as a result.  

Cost-effective: Advertising mail can be inexpensive. With the right targeting, the delivery of the items will only be sent to homes most likely to respond, saving costs on both printing and the physical postal delivery. Easy to test – Once your schedule, message, and target segments have been defined, mini test cells can be created with variations to messages, from loyal customers to potential ones. Therefore, they only receive offers that meet their specific needs.

Personalised: Using your campaign database, your direct mail item can include relevant personalised information to aid their response to your promotion. Relating your customers’ needs to your company's solution will make them feel like the conversation is directed specifically to them and how you will cater to them individually

Measurable: With direct mail, there are many opportunities to promote your business and brand. Whether you need to highlight a new service, introduce a change in product or a new model. Advertising mail can really grab the attention of your target audience and because you know who you have sent your items to, the responses to the campaign can easily be linked back to the original schedule to understand the campaign response.

Companies that use direct mail or advertising mail, gain more exposure to new customers but also create better relationships and invaluable insights with their customer base.

Have a look at our Direct Mail Best Practice Guide which will take you through some great tips and suggestions on how to create a winning campaign. A successful Direct Mail campaign creates higher interaction rates whilst building brand loyalty, and encourages more consumers to uses your products or services.

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