AMiable Solution #470: 10 Things to Love About Direct Mail Marketing
In the world of marketing, direct mail is often viewed as the ugly step-sister to the more glamorous digital marketing.
But there are plenty of reasons to love the traditional paper format, and plenty of reasons why it has survived since its inception in the late 1800s. Here are 10 of them:
1. Any industry can use it. It doesn’t matter if your business involves machines, muscles, or makeovers: print marketing is a universal tool that any business can use. All you need is a good idea, a great offer, and a reliable printer.
2. Any generation can understand it. As hard as it may be for some to believe, not everyone has embraced e-mail and cell phones. Direct mail requires no equipment to receive (only a mailbox) and no special skill to open and read.
3. Almost everyone has a mailing address and can receive it. No internet service where you or your market lives? No problem. All your prospects and buyers need is a mailbox.
4. Contact information is easily updatable. Thanks to the wonderful workings of the United States Postal Service, any bad addresses you have can be updated and fixed. Not so with bad emails: you need to contact the recipient or hope that he/she signs up again with a current address.
5. It’s versatile. While electronic marketing can be jazzed up with flashy graphics and snazzy music, it comes in only one dimension: flat. Direct mail, however, offers a more interactive and creative experience. It can be flat, 3D, boxed, folded, rolled, etc.
6. It’s touchable. The beauty of print marketing is that you can hold it in your hands, flip it over, feel the texture, highlight it, write notes on it, pass it to your colleague or neighbor, and file it away for later, etc.
7. It can bring readers to tears. Print marketing allows marketers to combine persuasive copy and emotionally charged images on a portable, transferable, savable, shareable format that makes a bigger impact than a small cell phone screen can.
8. It plays well with others. Although it can be used successfully all by itself, direct mail also works well with digital formats. Letters, postcards, brochures, and catalogs can all help direct readers to user- or subject-specific website pages. They can encourage readers to check their email boxes for special offers. They can advertise special communications with QR codes.
9. It is non-threatening and non-invasive. Yes, some people get upset when they receive unsolicited mail. But far more people get upset when they receive unsolicited emails.
10. It feels deliberate. The beauty of email and other forms of digital marketing is that new campaigns can be created and implemented quickly. But sometimes that can be a bad thing. Sometimes they look and feel rushed and impersonal. Direct mail, on the other hand, takes careful consideration. It takes planning. It takes a good eye. The results reflect that, and customers notice.
Let’s all give direct mail marketing the love it deserves.