Direct Mail Services in a Digital World

In a world where the average American worker spends more than five hours per day working on emails, people are increasingly searching for more ways to disconnect from the screens and have meaningful, tangible experiences. Direct mail gives them exactly what they’re wanting…something real, something tactile, something sensory…something that digitals ads just cannot. If you’re wondering how direct mail is doing in today’s digital world, then you’re in the right place. In this post, we’ll explore some of the ways direct mail is thriving as a competitor in the marketing industry while also complementing other marketing channels.


Direct Mail Gives People a Memorable Experience

People are yearning for tactile, stimulating, physical experiences like never before. With many of us looking back on the past four years as a time of isolation, working from home, and binge watching streaming services, it’s no wonder that people are ready to break away from screens and get back to multi-sensory experiences. Direct mail offers businesses and marketers a unique opportunity to interact with current, past, and potential customers in a tangible way, putting a physical piece of mail in their hands that is not just visually stimulating, but also tantalizes by touch, feel, and sometimes even smell. It’s easy to swipe away one of the endless emails you receive each day, ignore the countless banner and in-page ads, and close out annoying popups. But when you receive a well-crafted piece of direct mail, you don’t want to get rid of it. You want to experience the anticipation of opening it and see what’s inside. It’s a rush you’ll never get opening an email, and those positive emotions associated with direct mail are what forms lasting connections between customers and brands. People will remember that oversized, textured direct mail piece that encouraged interaction with its out-of-the-box opening method, impressed with high-quality materials, and resonated with an ultra-personalized message much more than any digital ad they’ll ever see.


Direct Mail Offers an Impressive ROI

The numbers just don’t lie…direct mail blows most forms of digital advertising out of the water in terms of ROI. In a 2023 survey by LOB and Comparemedia, 74% of respondents reported that direct mail gave them the best ROI of any marketing channel. Additionally, marketers consistently report that adding direct mail to their multichannel campaigns boost their ROI and response rates. In fact, in the 2023 ANA Response Rate Report, the ROI for direct mail to house mailing lists was a whopping 161%, blowing all other marketing channels out of the water! For reference, the average ROI for all marketing channels in the report was 35%, and email campaigns to house mailing lists only garnered a 44% ROI, coming nowhere close to the conversion rates of direct mail.


Direct Mail Allows for Unprecedented Personalization

You may think that digital marketing allows for more personalization than direct mail, but you’d be wrong. People are always astonished at how much personalization can go into direct mail campaigns, especially when using Variable Data Printing. In addition to personalizing the mail pieces with the recipient’s name, data can be pulled in about their location, hobbies, interests, past purchase behaviors, political affiliations, and more to create a truly customized direct mail piece that speaks to their heart and mind. With a meaningful message, imagery that corresponds to their location, and specific recommendations based on things they’ve bought before, direct mail offers businesses a way to connect with their audience like never before.


Direct Mail Extends Reach to Those Who Aren’t Online

It may be hard to believe, but not everyone spends hours each day online. There are many segments of the population that very rarely, if ever, access the internet. Businesses still need to reach these audience segments, and direct mail is a great way to do it. Senior citizens, people with disabilities, people living in areas with no reliable internet service, and teens who aren’t allowed to be on the internet are all groups that can be targeted by direct mail campaigns, allowing marketers to give attention to those who fall through the cracks of digital marketing.


Direct Mail Complements Digital Marketing Efforts

It’s not all competition between direct mail and digital marketing. In fact, these two marketing techniques work best together, one complementing the other and leading to more brand awareness, a more consistent brand image, and ultimately, more sales and exposure. Two of the most common ways marketers connect their direct mail and digital marketing campaigns is with QR codes and personalized URLs (PURLs). By placing a QR code or PURL on their direct mail pieces, marketers are bridging the gap between the physical and digital worlds, allowing potential customers to access photos, videos, reviews, and more while exploring the company and their products or services. In turn, customers who use QR codes or PURLs are giving marketers invaluable data on how people interact with direct mail campaigns and transition from receiving a piece of mail to researching it online to finally making a purchase or taking the desired action. That data is being used to improve direct mail/digital combo campaigns to be more useful, more personalized, and more successful.

Another important advantage that brings direct mail and digital marketing together is USPS’ Informed Delivery service. This innovative feature allows USPS customers who sign up to receive a digital image of their mail before they receive it so they know what to expect and when it should be coming. Marketers can leverage this service by adding links, videos, or even voice search technology to their direct mail, giving recipients even more ways to interact and engage.


Boost Your Marketing Results and Bottom Line With Direct Mail

Direct mail remains a contender in today’s digital-minded world, giving people the in-your-hands experience they’re craving after years of limited real-world interaction. Direct mail can work with digital campaigns to boost ROI, reach people who often are left out of marketing efforts, and deliver a personalized message that connects directly with the recipient’s existing interests.

Action Mail offers expert guidance, reliable service, and real results for direct mail clients in and around San Diego County, CA. Contact us today for high-quality direct mail services, printing, package assembly and kitting, data processing, list purchases, and more.

Sarah Ross