Is Direct Mail Right for Your Business?

by Kat O'Brien

August 4, 2016

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It’s been called snail mail but despite the implied inefficiency of this method, it is still one of the most reliable ways to ensure contact with a customer. With that being said, direct mail is only an effective tool if your audience is receptive to it. If someone gets a postcard and immediately throws it away, that postage was just wasted. However, if someone receives a postcard, reads it and follows a call to action, you just had a successful marketing campaign. So how do you know if direct mail is right for your business?

Know Your Audience

Think about your audience. What demographics are you trying to reach? Who are your customers? How old are they? Where do they live? Do they have mailboxes in their front yards? Do they have P.O boxes that they don’t check very often? Are they students? Do they live in apartments? Ask yourself if your audience would be receptive to direct mail. If you’re wondering how to get this information, consider going directly to the source. Ask your audience. Next time you see a customer, ask if they would be open to receiving mail with news about your business. Or utilize the digital side of marketing by asking about it on social media. For instance, you could write a post saying something along the lines of: “Would you mind getting mail with discounts and other important news about (your business’s name)?” This can give you direct feedback from the customers themselves.

Crunch the Numbers

Do your research about pricing options. Estimate about how much a direct mail campaign will cost you. Then, try to calculate a realistic number for how much revenue you anticipate the campaign will generate. Make sure that your expected revenue will be enough to generate a profit. According to fitsmallbusiness.com, the response rate from direct mail campaigns where the business has secured the prospect mailing list on their own is typically 3.94%. That means that 3.94% of the people who received direct mail responded to a call to action.

What Do You Want to Say?

Direct mail should have a single clear message that you want to be known. Ask yourself what your business has to say. Do you have news that your customers would find helpful? Do you have a new product coming out or a new service being offered? Are you doing a promotion? If you say yes to any of these questions, then you may want to consider direct mail.

Can Direct Mail Integrate With My Established Marketing Campaign?

Yes! Direct mail can integrate very well with an established marketing campaign. For example, if you are planning on posting a blog soon about a specific topic, consider if it would be effective to also send out a postcard driving people to the page to read your content. Or you could try to drive more traffic to your website with a piece of direct mail.

There’s no single, clear cut way to market a business. Every business is unique and you need to determine what marketing strategy is correct for you. However, if you consider the factors above, and find that direct mail may be a good fit, it could be worth your while to invest in this particular marketing strategy despite the overwhelming push to conduct everything digitally. Remember: Whether your strategy ends up being digital, direct, or a combination of both, your business is likely to grow, so make sure you have the right coverage to ensure all of the success resulting from your dedication and hard work is protected.

Sources:

  1. DMA: Direct mail response rates beat digital
  2. Direct Mail – The Ultimate Guide for Small Businesses
  3. Is Direct Mail Right for My Business

 

DISCLAIMER: This post provides general information related to direct mail. Lindbergh is not a law firm. This information is not intended as a substitute for, and should not be relied upon as, legal advice. It is provided for general educational and informational purposes only. Although Lindbergh strives to ensure that its content is accurate, it makes no guarantees. All legal inquiries should be directed to intellectual property counsel in your State or jurisdiction. Lindbergh is not responsible for any errors or omissions in the content of this post or damages arising from the use of this information under any circumstances.

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