The following article comes to the Strategic Sourceror courtesy of Eire Direct, a direct marketing specialist firm based in Chicago, IL.


As direct marketers, we’re always singing the praises of good old direct mail. And that’s because it works! (Editor's Note: The Strategic Sourceror agrees!) We understand that an integrated, multi-channel marketing approach is best, and direct mail deserves a nice slice of the overall budget. Check out these stats from the 2015 DMA Response Rate Report:

  • Direct mail response rates outperform digital channels by a long shot. Direct mail achieves a 3.7% response rate with a house list, and a 1.0% response rate with a prospect list. All digital channels combined only achieve a 0.62% response rate (Mobile 0.2%; Email 0.1% for a Prospect list and 0.1% for House/Total list; Social Media 0.1%; Paid Search 0.1%; Display Advertising 0.02%). Telephone had the highest response rate at 9-10%. 
  • Cost-per-acquisition for direct mail is very competitive. Direct mail stands at $19, which fares favorably with Mobile and Social Media (both at $16-18), Paid Search ($21-30), Internet Display ($41-50) and even email ($11-15). 
  • 82% of respondents expect to use the same amount of direct mail, or more, in the coming year. 
  • Formats are playing a role. According to the study, oversized envelopes have the best response rate at 5.0%, followed by postcards at 4.25%, dimensional 4.0%, catalogs 3.9% and letter-sized envelopes 3.5%. 
  • Marketers continue to embrace multi-channel marketing, with 44% of the respondents using three or more channels for their marketing efforts. In these instances, the most popular channels tend to be email, direct mail and social media. 
  • Direct mail offers strong return on marketing investment. It returns the same ROI as social media (15-17%). 
It’s also important to remember that mail tends to have a nice long life span. In fact, the average time advertising mail is kept in the home is 17 days.* Once it catches the attention of the reader, it will likely be left out or passed around the home. That “sharing” means your message is reaching more people and your audience is growing!

*1IPA Touchpoints 5, 2014 (Data based upon Monday to Saturday reading)
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