Living most of our lives online and receiving multiple emails per day, we would almost forget that regular mail still exists. It does, and it is a fantastic way to reach out to current or potential customers.
Use direct mail to reach out and add an ‘experience’ to receiving mail, and not just receive a “ping” when an email hits your inbox.
Did you know…
According to a recent study, in contrast to Q2 2020 direct mail data early in the pandemic, Q2 2021 shows a resurgence with a 34% YOY increase. In the second quarter of the year, mailers sent over 7 billion pieces of mail, with a 9% increase in quarterly volume.
- 42.2% of direct mail recipients either read or scan the mail they get.
- Direct mail requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than email.
- Direct mail recipients purchase 28% more items and spend 28% more money than people who don’t get that same piece of direct mail.
- Direct mail offers a 29% return on investment.
- 73% of American consumers say they prefer being contacted by brands via direct mail because they can read it whenever they want.
(Sources: Small Business Genius, Sequel DM)
Incorporating personalized elements into your direct mail creates a bond with the prospective customers. You can create direct mail that personalizes the images appearing on the mailing based upon specific data triggers or copy used. For example, when you create a direct mail for a pet store or brand, and you know the receiver of the mail is a dog owner, you can personalize the images used in the direct mail. This level of personalization only costs slightly more. Using full colour adds even more value than traditional monochrome personalization.
Use an oversized envelope
A standard size envelope is a #10 which is 4 ⅛” x 9 ½”. You can send your direct mail in a slightly larger envelope, such as a #14, which is 5 x 11 1/2 inches or 6” x 9” as in the example below, while remaining within the letter rate postage classification. The different size will help you attract more attention to your mailing, as it will stand out against the rest of mail that your customers receive every day. At the same time, by staying within the same postage category, you will not drastically increase your costs.
Use a stand-out envelope
Lumpy envelopes create intrigue and a degree of suspense. Recipients want to open the mail to find out what the lump is. Moreover, they encourage recipients to open your piece of mail before they open others’.
Your marketing message becomes the center of attention, rather than the latest in a long line of envelopes and letters. As with all marketing campaigns, the key is to balance cost with effectiveness.
Fortunately, promotional products don’t have to cost a lot to be effective. Some charities have folded collection bags and placed them in envelopes. Not only are these inexpensive, but they are functional too. Once folded, these bags take up room and their texture, as well as their bulk, makes them an intriguing proposition to recipients.
The item that you use to create the lump should offer some benefit or purpose. Otherwise, intrigue will lead to disappointment in the eyes of your target market. You don’t want your business to be associated with disappointing results.
Using 3D mail
Standard envelopes with a paper letter have length and width, but they have no depth. Adding depth to your packaging can also add depth to your marketing materials. Alternatively, you can send a box, or even a tube or be creative with bottles and other items.
When considering 3D packaging, remember that the cost of the packaging itself is likely to be higher than a standard envelope. The cost of postage or delivery is also expected to be higher, and you should cost all these elements to ensure that your campaign still comes in within budget. One way to keep costs down is to ensure that your list of recipients is highly targeted. This reduces the number of packages that need to be sent and increases the likelihood of a positive response.
Not only does 3D mail create intrigue, but it literally stands out. Consider that the average recipient is likely to be getting a stack of mail every day. An envelope will slot neatly into the middle of this pile, often overlooked. Your 3D packaging means that your direct mail will have to be put on top of the collection or carried separately.
3D mail is also memorable. If you get it right, your mail recipients will not only remember the message themselves, but they will show their family and friends, and colleagues. They might even share photos and videos of the package on social media and online.
Incorporate Product Samples
Offering free samples to potential customers is certainly not a new tactic, but it remains highly effective: mainly when a person receives a targeted gift in the mail. Recipients will value any free sample, but it is essential to remember that they will judge the sample. The quality of the sample needs to be as high as the quality of the product itself, and you need to ensure that you provide an adequate size of the sample.
Recipients will be unable to test the product properly if they are not provided with an adequate size of sample. Of course, some care needs to be taken when mailing samples to recipients.
The packaging of the sample itself needs to be robust, and it should be branded the same as your primary products. While some people will keep the paperwork that accompanied the example, this won’t be true in all cases.
These are just a few examples of how to stand out in the mailbox. If you are not yet doing it, Direct Mail can be something to look into. Browse the web for ideas and adapt it to fit your company or product.