The following guest blog comes to us from Caryl Anne Crowe of Insty-Prints

Long gone are the days where the direct mail industry was the king of marketing. Today, online marketing has almost completely taken over. But does that mean "snail mail" is no longer effective for today's businesses? Some experts suggest direct mail marketing in the form of postcards, letters and brochures sent to potential customers' mailboxes is still an effective way to market. However, for it to be a successful marketing tactic, business owners have to rebrand the way they go about marketing this way to their customers.

Advertising Benefits of Direct Mail for Any Industry

The main benefit of direct mail is that it is a proven way for businesses to get advertisements into their consumers' hands. According to a study done by Money Mailer, the impact of advertising done with a national satellite dealer found that their direct mail advertisements led to a 35% increase in their website's activities. Additionally, it has been found that many consumers still like to use paper coupons. Although many consumers still rely heavily on using their smartphones, there is a pleasant feeling that comes with using direct mail physical coupons.

Ways in Which Direct Mail Is Being Rebranded to Be Successful

For a business to stand out from the competition through direct mail, they need to be creative. Boring letters get easily mixed in with bills and junk mail. As an example, one company raising awareness for their campaign created a letter where the words on it only became visible when it was soaked with water. Interactive pieces of direct mail often get more consumers' attention.

Evoke Feelings
Another way to ensure direct mail campaigns are successful is by evoking feelings from the recipients. Emotions are marketer's secret weapons. People rely on their emotions when making buying decisions, not just using logical information.

Why Direct Mail Works

1. It's Tangible - These days, digital noise consumes people's attention. Digital mail can be great at breaking through the digital noise and offering consumers a little moment of peace. It can allow targeted messages to resonate more with the recipients.

2. People Enjoy Opening Mail - Some people view checking their mailboxes as a ritual. For some of those same people, it is more than just a habit.

3. There's Less Competition - Because of the growth of digital marketing, most people have full email inboxes to sort through. Any marketing mail will get lost in the digital pile of bill notices, emails from friends and family and spam mail. Because of this, the opportunity to get your mail noticed through direct mail is easier.

The Intro Of GDPR

General Data Protection Regulation has been a welcomed change for direct mail. As both controllers and processors of personal consumer data, direct mail marketers need to stay aware of how the new GDPR will affect them. Many feel that these changes offer new opportunities to market brands in new innovative ways using the collected data. Brands will not need to get consent from authorities for postal marketing if they can prove the use is legitimate.

Associated Costs with Rebranded Direct Mail

Creative Costs - Businesses can best benefit from hiring a professional copywriter to design their campaigns for the best response rate.

Printing Costs - With a simple design, the costs of the brochures, letters and envelopes can be kept to a minimum. More advanced designs will cost more to print. However, the right design may get better responses.

Mailing Costs - This is often the most expensive cost of direct mail campaigns. Businesses should consider unaddressed leaflet distributions to help keep their costs to a minimum.

Response Costs - This is an optional cost and depends on how you want customers to respond to your direct mail campaigns. If you want to offer reply envelopes with postage paid, there will be more costs. If you want to create a specific landing page associated with a campaign, that will come with its own costs if you must pay someone to create it.

Response Rate And ROI

The basic formula when considering the type of ROI, you can expect from a specific direct mail campaign is to take your total investment costs and divide it by the value of a single sale. This will result in the number of new customers required to respond. In order to assess the success of a campaign more accurately, the value of the full life of a new account would need to be taken into consideration.

Caryl Anne Crowne is a contributing writer and media specialist for Insty-Prints. She often produces content for a variety of marketing blogs.
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