Email “prospecting” is losing its power and direct mail is gaining strength. And for this reason some of the biggest Internet names (Google, Facebook, Microsoft) are major direct mail users. Marketers that use direct mail will gain an edge on competitors that skip direct mail. And, it’s not just for the big guys. It’s for the little guys who want to grow.
Here are 15 reasons you should be using direct mail instead of email to get new customers and more business:
1. DIRECT MAIL GENERATES ACTION :
A DMA (Direct Marketing Association) study demonstrated the following behavior of people receiving direct mail:
… 46% direct mail recipients read/looked at their direct mail.
… 23% visited the sender’s store location
… 21% visited the sender’s website
… 12% called an 800# listed on the mailer
… 9% replied via email
2. HIGHER RESPONSE:
Another recent study by the DMA shows direct mail being 10 to 30 times more effective than email in generating “new” customers and prospects. On an overall basis, the average response rate for direct mail (DMA, 2013) was 4.4% and an anemic rate of 0.12% for electronic media.
3. CONSUMERS PREFER DIRECT MAIL to EMAIL:
An Epsilon study found that over 50% of consumers prefer regular mail to email. And 67% feel direct mail is more personal than the Internet. Seventy per cent (70%) preferred mail for receiving unsolicited information from unfamiliar companies. (In fact if you have low name recognition, you have a very low chance of your email getting opened.)
4. MORE TRUSTWORTHY:
The Epsilon study also found that 25% of consumers found snail mail offers more trustworthy than email offers.
5. MAILING LISTS MATTER:
High quality email addresses are very difficult to acquire – mainly because most people do not opt-in for third-party offers. And when available they are expensive. Typically a direct mail list offers 80% more prospects.
6. LESS COMPETITION:
More than ever consumers are bombarded with digital offers that they don’t want. Email is now the cluttered option, while postal mail represents the uncluttered option. With direct mail your offer will not get loss in avalanche of competitive offers.
7. LONGER LIFE: The shelf-life of an email offer is measured in seconds, while a direct mail piece can linger on a coffee table for days…if not weeks. Special offer mailings I have done for clients see a healthy percentage coming in or calling weeks later.
8. MORE SELECTIVITY:
Most email lists do not offer the extensive array of selectivity factors available with a direct mail list. With a direct mail list you can pinpoint your best prospects … cream of the crop prospects, while email often forces marketers to take the old-fashion shotgun approach.
9. HIGHER DELIVERY RATE:
A direct mail list is typically 95% deliverable. On the other hand, the great majority of email lists being advertised have a delivery below 50%.
10. HIGHER OPEN RATE:
With the great majority of email “prospecting” campaigns, 95+ percent of all emails are not even opened. The email recipient will either delete or transfer to the SPAM box … without even peeking at the email … or your brand name. On the other hand, standard mail is a tangible item that typically captures a glance. The receiver may not read every word, but your company name/brand will gain much more awareness with direct mail than email.
With the growing threat of identity theft, viruses, and SPAM, people are becoming more and more hesitating in responding to on-line offers … even legitimate interesting offers. Regular mail is safe … the user can visit website on own time schedule and without having to click potentially dangerous links.
12. IMPROVES EMAIL RESPONSE RATE:
One sure way to boost email OPEN and CLICK-THROUGH rates is with direct mail. One week before the email blast, send the email recipient a postcard informing that a special “email” offer will soon arrive. This one-two punch will increase the odds that the email recipient will OPEN the email … instead of deleting before even blinking at the email.
13. MORE CONTROL:
The majority of quality email list suppliers will not release their email addresses. With standard mail you can receive the direct list. Having a prospecting database in-house … offers innumerable marketing applications / opportunities; for example, data append, market analysis, market penetration reports, Sales Force Prospecting Management, Telemarketing Follow-Up Campaigns.
14. INCREASE WEB TRAFFIC & ONLINE SALES:
Direct mail has a tremendous influence on generating online sales. Per USPS study, over 60% of direct mail recipients were influenced to visit promoted website – with the greatest influence on first-time shoppers. Direct mail recipients purchased 28% more items and spent 28% more money than non direct mail recipients. The study also noted a revenue lift of 163% for websites supported by direct mail as opposed to those that were not. (SOURCE: USPS survey of 5,000 visitors to retail websites.)
15. CONSUMERS LIKE THE TACTILE NATURE OF DIRECT MAIL:
In focus groups consumers said the interactive part of direct mail helped them connect to the brand and left a lasting impression.
NOTE: Email is a very effective medium for communicating and selling existing or past customers. However, from the perspective of prospecting — finding new customers —direct mail is much more effective.
NOTE 2: If your prospect is not familiar with your name or brand, email is the least
likely way to get a response. Surveys have shown that businesses/consumer open emails when they know the sender and are interested in their products/services. That’s not so true in direct mail. If the package presents the company well, the recipient will open an unknown brand/company’s mail out of curiosity.
If you enjoyed this article, please share with your friends and colleagues. If you have other reasons why businesses should be utilizing direct mail, please tell us about it. Visit our website www.themarketinggarage.com to learn more about what we can do to help you grow your business.